Ushaw was founded in 1808 from the former English Catholic College at Douai in France and was purpose-built in its beautiful setting four miles from the City of Durham.
Ushaw underwent major expansion, beginning in 1845 and continuing through the remainder of the 19th century, and boasts significant examples of the work of Gothic revival architects including the Pugin and Hansom families. Augustus Pugin began this with the first chapel on the site, which was later replaced by a much larger chapel by Dunn and Hansom in the 1880’s.
Other notable buildings include the refectory, theatre and the Library, all completed by 1860, and each contributing to the wealth of the architecture and setting. The majority of our buildings are listed, and Ushaw was developed with the specific intention of providing a self- sustaining existence, with farms, gardens and designed landscape. The Divines Café, historic gardens and main-house are open to the public.
Mondays to Fridays: 11am - 4pm (Last entry 3pm, hot food served in cafe until 2pm)
Saturdays: 11am - 4pm (Last entry 3pm).
Open all year.
Between Durham City and Esh Villiage, four miles NNW of Durham City.
As we are such an old establishment, sometimes SatNav systems get a bit confused and send visitors to the wrong entrance. For the best results, please use DH7 7DW, which will bring you in the correct way.
Durham City is on the East Coast main line. Ushaw is four miles from the City centre and is easiet reached by taxi from the train station. However, there is an infrequent bus service from Durham Bus station, the 52. Other buses the 48 and 43 reach villages one mile from Ushaw every 20 minutes.
- Offers bike storage
Paddy's Taxi's Ltd 0191 386 6662
Free entry for Historic Houses members from 2020.
(15 +) £3 - Day Pass £6 - Annual Pass
Free- under 5 £1- day pass Aged 5-15 £3- Annual Pass Aged 5-15
- Accessible toilets
- Wheelchair ramps/routes
- Accessible parking
- Guide dogs welcome
- Hearing loops
A word from the owner
We have a wonderful team of volunteers who keep Ushaw open to the public, provide tours and maintain the historic gardens.
Ushaw holds the largest collection of the Pugin family Gothic Revival architecture in the UK. Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin (1812-1852), famous for his work on the Houses of Parliament, was involved with Ushaw's building expansion from the 1840s to his death. Consequently, his sons Edward and Peter Paul Pugin both carried on his legacy and designed chapels, a museum, infirmary, dormitory and Junior School for the site. Later, Pugin's grandson Sebastian Pugin- Powell designed Ushaw's memorial chapels for those who died during WWI. The interior of Ushaw also boasts furniture, textiles, church plate and stained glass to the Pugin family designs. Our Eagle Lectern and Paschal Candlestick in St. Cuthbert's Chapel were both exhibited in Augustus Pugin's Medieval Court at the Great Exhibition, 1851.