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LEISURE & LIFESTYLE

Leisure & Lifestyle

What’s happening in and around East Durham

believe housing invites staff and community to be part of new allotment

believe housing invites staff and community to be part of new allotment

It’s good for the environment, produces free fresh food and is a great way to get fit and make friends – what’s not to love about gardening? That is the question posed by believe housing as it invites schools, groups and individuals to get as busy as bees on its new...

Seaham funday will help raise funds for melanoma

Seaham funday will help raise funds for melanoma

A fun day to raise money for, and awareness of, melanoma is being held in Seaham on Sunday, June 26. The 'Melanoma Me' event, at Seaham Park Cricket Club, will take place between 11am and 6pm. It will include stalls, a bar, live music, a raffle and games. All proceeds...

First celebrity chefs announced for Seaham Food Festival

First celebrity chefs announced for Seaham Food Festival

A Saturday Kitchen star and a formidable TV judge are the first celebrity chefs confirmed to appear at a popular seaside food festival. Seaham Food Festival returns on Saturday 6 and Sunday 7 August, bringing back sensational street food, family entertainment and live...

Trees planted by believe housing for Queen’s jubilee

Trees planted by believe housing for Queen’s jubilee

Believe housing has planted two special trees to mark Her Majesty the Queen’s platinum jubilee – supporting a veterans’ charity and the environment at the same time. Bill Fullen, Chief Executive of the County Durham-based housing association, was joined by Board...

Customers can help Believe Housing award community grants

Customers can help Believe Housing award community grants

A housing association with 18,000 homes across County Durham and beyond is inviting customers to help it allocate grants to community projects. Throughout the year, believe housing supports projects and activities that make a difference to people’s lives and wellbeing...

Seaham’s Lickety Split recognised at environmental awards

Seaham’s Lickety Split recognised at environmental awards

County Durham’s green-minded residents and community groups have been celebrated at a virtual awards ceremony. The annual County Durham Environment Awards, which are run by Durham County Council on behalf of the County Durham Environment and Climate Change...

Food Review: The Hearty Hedgehog at Hallgarth, the Manor House Hotel

Food Review: The Hearty Hedgehog at Hallgarth, the Manor House Hotel

Hallgarth, The Manor House, in Pittington has long been a firm favourite for happy couples tying the knot. But recently, thanks to a six-figure investment committed by its new owners, the venue is branching out. EDB editor Leanne Fawcett went along to see how the...

County Durham showcased to UK City of Culture 2025 judging panel

County Durham showcased to UK City of Culture 2025 judging panel

Ambitious plans to drive growth, spark creativity and celebrate the extraordinary people and places of County Durham have showcased to the UK City of Culture 2025 judging panel. An exciting and immersive timetable of activities was arranged for the judges’ eagerly...

Army Cadet Force recognised with Chairman’s Medal

Army Cadet Force recognised with Chairman’s Medal

An organisation which has helped countless young adults to develop their skills, broaden their horizons and become better citizens, has been awarded County Durham’s highest honour. Durham County Council’s Chairman, Cllr Watts Stelling, presented the Chairman’s Medal...

Free swimming sessions to promote water safety

Free swimming sessions to promote water safety

Families in County Durham can enjoy free pool fun as part of a campaign to encourage safer swimming. Durham County Council is offering free pool-based activities for children and young people aged 18 and under who live in the county, in support of national Be Water...

Record-breaking 30,000 people visit Bishop Auckland Food Festival

Record-breaking 30,000 people visit Bishop Auckland Food Festival

Bishop Auckland Food Festival returned to its original spring date this year and was a roaring success, as people travelled from County Durham and beyond to celebrate all things food. The Durham County Council-run festival saw record-breaking visitor numbers this...

Travel information for Bishop Auckland Food Festival

Travel information for Bishop Auckland Food Festival

With just one day to go until Bishop Auckland Food Festival, visitors are being encouraged to plan their journey ahead of the weekend. The free Durham County Council-run event will be returning to Bishop Auckland town centre this weekend on Saturday 23 and Sunday 24...

Dalton Park welcomes new Centre Manager Richard Kaye

Dalton Park welcomes new Centre Manager Richard Kaye

It’s all change at Dalton Park, as the North East’s largest outlet shopping destination bids a fond farewell to Centre Manager Jerry Hatch after 16 years at the helm. New centre manager Richard Kaye is excited to take over the role. Having spent over 5 years managing...

Just two weeks to go until Bishop Auckland Food Festival

Just two weeks to go until Bishop Auckland Food Festival

Organisers of Bishop Auckland Food Festival are counting down the days until visitors are welcomed back to celebrate all things food. There are just two more weeks to go until the Durham County Council-run festival, which will take place on Saturday 23 and Sunday 24...

Anticipation builds for reimagined DLI Museum and Gallery

Anticipation builds for reimagined DLI Museum and Gallery

A first glimpse of an exciting new cultural venue for County Durham has been revealed. Durham County Council has released a visualisation of what the former DLI Museum and Gallery will look like after it is transformed into a vibrant exhibition centre, gallery and...

The Five Quarter in Peterlee takes part in 12-day beer festival

The Five Quarter in Peterlee takes part in 12-day beer festival

A range of real ales, including three from overseas brewers, will be available at The Five Quarter in Peterlee during its 12-day real ale festival. The pub in Hailsham Place will host the festival from now until Sunday,  April 10. The overseas brewers are from...

New eatery the Palm Courtyard Cafe in Seaham officially opened

New eatery the Palm Courtyard Cafe in Seaham officially opened

The Palm Courtyard Café at Seaham Town Park has been officially opened. The opening was conducted by the Mayor of Seaham, Councillor Leanne Kennedy; Seaham Town Councillors, Cllr Kathryn Brace, Cllr Jenny Bell, Cllr Sonia Foster and Cllr Georgina Fuller; and Hayley...

Partners and residents support Murton Parish Council litter pick

Partners and residents support Murton Parish Council litter pick

Murton Parish Council have been leading an initiative in partnership with Dalton Park and Morrisons, and with the support of the Dancing Betty and Durham County Council, so that Murton can call itself a litter free community. On Saturday, March 19, 2022, the council...

Headline acts announced for this year’s Durham BRASS festival

Headline acts announced for this year’s Durham BRASS festival

A double MOBO Award winner, a Mercury Music Prize and Brit Award nominee, a band fronted by the current British Poet Laureate, and arguably the most famous brass band in the world will headline a popular music festival when it returns this summer. Tickets for a range...

Final chef announced for Bishop Auckland Food Festival

Final chef announced for Bishop Auckland Food Festival

With six weeks to go until Bishop Auckland Food Festival, organisers are excited to announce the final celebrity chef making up the weekend’s line up. The Durham County Council-run festival will delight foodies from across County Durham and beyond on Saturday 23 and...

Dalton Park’s first EcoFest event hailed a success

Dalton Park’s first EcoFest event hailed a success

Dalton Park’s first EcoFest event has been hailed a huge success by shoppers, traders, retailers and official partner Climate Action North. More than 1,500 people attended over the weekend with all workshops and activities fully booked in advance. The two-day free...

East Durham Business magazine review: The Royal George, Old Shotton

East Durham Business magazine review: The Royal George, Old Shotton

The Royal George at Old Shotton has long been a firm favourite among the East Durham food scene so when we were given the chance the visit the popular eatery to sample a two-course lunch, we were more than happy to accept. East Durham Business editor Leanne Fawcett...

Council bringing empty homes back into use across County Durham

Council bringing empty homes back into use across County Durham

The importance of bringing derelict properties back into use to benefit communities is being highlighted by a North East council as part of National Empty Homes Week. Durham County Council is taking part in the week of action from Monday 28 February to Sunday 6 March...

Lucy Wood blog: Overcoming emotions and achieving your dreams

Lucy Wood blog: Overcoming emotions and achieving your dreams

The beginning of January was such a turbulent time. Both my parents had caught Covid-19 on New Year's Eve and were having to isolate in a room separate to me. I tested myself and I was negative, which was a bittersweet moment because as much as I was pleased that I...

Save the date as this year’s Seaham Food Festival confirmed

Save the date as this year’s Seaham Food Festival confirmed

A popular festival will bring delicious street food, celebrity chefs and more to the County Durham coast when it returns this summer. Food fans are being invited to save the date for Seaham Food Festival, which will take place this year on Saturday 6 and Sunday 7...

First celebrity chefs revealed for Bishop Auckland Food Festival

First celebrity chefs revealed for Bishop Auckland Food Festival

One of the North East’s most popular food festivals has announced its first line up of celebrity chefs, as organisers prepare to welcome foodies back to Bishop Auckland this spring. Bishop Auckland Food Festival will be returning to its April date after taking place...

Councillors to consider new tenancy strategy to meet needs of residents

Councillors to consider new tenancy strategy to meet needs of residents

Plans to implement a new tenancy strategy will be considered by County Durham councillors next week. As a housing authority, Durham County Council must keep its tenancy strategy under review in light of changing legislation and other factors. The council may amend it...

County Durham finalises its bid for UK City of Culture 2025

County Durham finalises its bid for UK City of Culture 2025

Being named UK City of Culture 2025 will attract millions of visitors to County Durham and the north east, create thousands of jobs, and significantly support the region’s levelling up. Today, Durham County Council has outlined its plans for the Durham 2025 campaign,...

Festival to celebrate choral music in County Durham

Festival to celebrate choral music in County Durham

World-famous artists will be part of a returning festival which helps to further young people’s learning of choral music in County Durham. Durham Vocal Festival was established by Durham Music Service (DMS) in 2017 to celebrate the heritage and depth of choral music...

Chinese New Year to be celebrated in Durham City

Chinese New Year to be celebrated in Durham City

Communities and venues across County Durham are preparing to ring in the Year of the Tiger with a host of traditional events and activities. Durham City will be celebrating the Lunar New Year on Saturday, 5 February with activities, performances and entertainment from...

Home Time exhibition explores life under lockdown

Home Time exhibition explores life under lockdown

An exhibition exploring the lockdown experiences of some of County Durham’s most vulnerable residents has gone on display at Gala Durham’s Gala Gallery. Home Time tells the story of life under lockdown through the eyes of care home residents, those who had to shield...

Gala Durham announce packed line up of shows this spring

Gala Durham announce packed line up of shows this spring

Critically-acclaimed live theatre, high profile stand-up performances and family fun are just some of the components making up an eclectic season of shows this spring at Gala Durham. The Durham City venue, which is operated by Durham County Council, opens its new...

Strong performance at Dalton Park leads to 26 new job opportunities

Strong performance at Dalton Park leads to 26 new job opportunities

A strong performance during 2021 has led to the creation of 26 new jobs at the North East’s biggest outlet shopping centre. Dalton Park Outlet Shopping Destination saw like-for-like sales increase by 13% against the same period in 2019, despite hugely challenging...

Early bird offer for Gala panto following Robin Hood success

Early bird offer for Gala panto following Robin Hood success

Organisers at a County Durham theatre have hailed the success of its recent Christmas pantomime, and are already looking forward to entertaining audiences once again next December. Durham County Council’s Gala Durham production of The Adventures of Robin Hood has come...

Residents invited to have their say on the future of library services

Residents invited to have their say on the future of library services

Residents across County Durham can have their say on the future of local library services. Durham County Council held the last review of the county’s library service in 2012. In recent years society has experienced massive digital and technological advancements and as...

NHS app turns three with 22 million people using it

NHS app turns three with 22 million people using it

The NHS App, launched just over three years ago, on 31 December 2018, now has over 22 million users and is one of the UK’s most downloaded apps. More than 22 million NHS App users (over 18 million registrations since the NHS COVID Pass was added on 17 May) The NHS App...

Castle restoration work takes regional award

Castle restoration work takes regional award

Work to revitalise a medieval castle in County Durham has won a regional award. Auckland Castle, in Bishop Auckland, is one of the most significant complexes of medieval buildings in England.  As a favoured residence of the bishops of Durham for at least 800 years, it...

Archive office takes first steps towards new premises

Archive office takes first steps towards new premises

Changes to a County Durham archive will mark the beginning of an exciting new era for the service, as it prepares to move to a vibrant new local history centre. From January 2022, Durham County Record Office’s search room will temporarily close to visitors to allow...

Council claims top award for custom build housing work

Council claims top award for custom build housing work

A North East council has won a national award for its work on a pilot project which helps buyers custom build their own homes. Durham County Council has been working with Custom Build Homes to develop nine serviced plots at the new Trinity Mews development on the...

Accessible pantomime performances available for families over Christmas

Accessible pantomime performances available for families over Christmas

With pantomime season in full swing, two County Durham theatre venues are providing accessible performances of their Christmas shows, so that all audiences can share in the festive fun. Since late-November, Gala Durham and Consett’s Empire Theatre have been hosting...

Traders invited to apply for Bishop Auckland Food Festival

Traders invited to apply for Bishop Auckland Food Festival

Traders are being invited to apply for a stand at one of the region’s most popular food festivals ahead of its return next spring. Durham County Council has confirmed Bishop Auckland Food Festival will take place on Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 April next year. This...

HR Dept, Durham blog: Let’s get creative with Secret Santa

HR Dept, Durham blog: Let’s get creative with Secret Santa

You know that the festive season has well and truly arrived when temperatures are going down and lights are going up! Plus, of course, the return of Mariah Carey, Michael Bublé and co to the airwaves. The pandemic is still making headlines, but virtual or otherwise,...

Festive fun for all the family at Prince Bishop’s Place

Festive fun for all the family at Prince Bishop’s Place

Prince Bishops Place is full of festive cheer this season with visits to Father Christmas, a children’s Christmas trail and a magical pedal powered tree! Plus the centre is raising funds for Treetops Children’s Ward at the University Hospital of North Durham....

Selective licensing scheme set to improve housing in County Durham

Selective licensing scheme set to improve housing in County Durham

A scheme which aims to drive up standards across County Durham’s private rented housing sector has been approved by the government. Durham County Council has been successful in applying for a large-scale selective licensing scheme, requiring all private landlords to...

Horden charity DDS secures National Lottery funding in support boost

Horden charity DDS secures National Lottery funding in support boost

Durham Deafened Support (DDS) has been given an early Christmas present with a further funding boost. The Horden-based charity has received an award from the National Lottery Community Fund to enable it to continue the valuable support that it provides to those with...

New tasting menu restaurant coming to Durham city

New tasting menu restaurant coming to Durham city

Plans for a new restaurant, offering diners an affordable six-course tasting menu using locally sourced, seasonal ingredients, have been unveiled. Coarse will be based in the heart of Durham city centre and will open in the new year. Ruari Mackay, former chef at...

Local authority working to help those affected by Storm Arwen

Local authority working to help those affected by Storm Arwen

Supporting those affected by Storm Arwen is a key priority for the North East’s largest council. The storm, which brought gale force winds, heavy rain and heavy snow over the weekend, saw many households lose power, roads forced to close, and damage caused to housing...

New campaign urges North East shoppers to be kind this Christmas

New campaign urges North East shoppers to be kind this Christmas

Crimestoppers and retailers are urging shoppers across the North East to #ShopKind when they visit local high streets this Christmas, as new national polling reveals that over one third of shoppers (38%) have witnessed violence and abuse against shopworkers. With at...

Ho Ho Ho… Come and see Santa at Castle Dene Shopping Centre

Ho Ho Ho… Come and see Santa at Castle Dene Shopping Centre

The Countdown to Christmas is on and from this weekend, you can visit Santa Claus at Castle Dene Shopping Centre in Peterlee. From Sunday, and then every Saturday and Sunday between 10am and 4pm until Christmas, you can pop down and meet The Big Man. No booking is...

County Durham pupils spread international Christmas cheer

County Durham pupils spread international Christmas cheer

Primary school pupils across County Durham have started spreading early Christmas cheer amongst their international peers. As part of an annual festive project, Durham County Council has brought together more than 300 schools from 19 different countries to help...

Christmas is coming as festive shop opens in Prince Bishops Place

Christmas is coming as festive shop opens in Prince Bishops Place

Prince Bishops Place is delighted to welcome Elvet and Bailey’s Handmade Christmas to the centre. The new venture is the second shop from the people behind Elvet & Bailey and specialises in locally produced, Christmas themed gifts. All products stocked are...

Eleven new jobs created as Etto Caffe opens at Dalton Park

Eleven new jobs created as Etto Caffe opens at Dalton Park

A brand new eatery has opened its doors at Dalton Park and is already welcoming guests in with a tempting range of hot and cold drinks, a delicious brunch menu, tasty artisan cakes and authentic Italian Gelato. Etto Caffé is part of the Massarella Catering Group, a...

Innovative new project connects Blackhall with years of history

Innovative new project connects Blackhall with years of history

East Durham Creates is working together with Durham University on an innovative new project which connects a former mining village in East Durham to thousands of years of history in the university’s collection. As we emerged from lockdown in 2020 local arts engagement...

Funding boost to support proposals for passenger rail service

Funding boost to support proposals for passenger rail service

Plans to develop a passenger rail service from Weardale to Darlington are to be further considered thanks to £50,000 funding. Durham County Council and The Auckland Project have been successful in applying for the grant from the Department for Transport’s Restoring...

County Durham parks awarded for being kept in tip top shape

County Durham parks awarded for being kept in tip top shape

Parks across County Durham have been handed Green Flag Awards after being kept in tip top shape during the past year. The awards recognise excellence and good practice in the management and development of parks and open spaces. Ranging from parks to cemeteries, to...

Appeal launched to find more foster carers in County Durham

Appeal launched to find more foster carers in County Durham

More people are being urged to consider becoming foster carers to help make a difference to the lives of children across County Durham. Durham County Council has launched an appeal to recruit more carers for children with additional needs and disabilities. This could...

Lucy Wood blog: Battling mental health when circumstances change

Lucy Wood blog: Battling mental health when circumstances change

Since returning to college at the end of August, I’ve been at a constant battle with my mental health. Mainly my anxiety. This is due to me having to make new friends after my friends from last year have now moved on with their lives and have jobs or are going to...

Spa days are back… Seaham Hall Hotel and Serenity Spa review

Spa days are back… Seaham Hall Hotel and Serenity Spa review

Seaham Hall Serenity Spa Review by Leanne Fawcett for East Durham Business magazine... Nearly two years after my last visit to the wonderful Seaham Hall Hotel – a real gem in the North East’s crown -  because of the coronavirus pandemic, it was with open arms and...

Thousands of people attend Bishop Auckland Food Festival

Thousands of people attend Bishop Auckland Food Festival

People across County Durham and beyond came to Bishop Auckland to celebrate all things food, when a popular festival returned at the weekend with extra flavour. Thousands of people attended this year’s Bishop Auckland Food Festival, laid on by Durham County Council,...

Christmas is coming early to East Durham Garden Centre

Christmas is coming early to East Durham Garden Centre

It might only be October but next weekend Christmas is coming to East Durham Garden Centre. On Sunday, October 9, the centre will officially launch its festive displays, with decorations, trees and gifts all available to buy. The incredible Christmas displays are...

Greggs renews partnership with Seaham-based Redu Retail

Greggs renews partnership with Seaham-based Redu Retail

Greggs has reappointed retail marketing and branded payments provider Redu Retail to lead its Corporate Gift Card provision. The agreement marks the continuation of a collaborative partnership intended to facilitate further growth for the UK’s leading bakery food...

The Five Quarter cutting food and drink prices for one-day special

The Five Quarter cutting food and drink prices for one-day special

A Peterlee pub is to cut the price of all food and drink by 7.5 per cent on Thursday, September 23 - to highlight the benefit of a permanent VAT reduction in the hospitality industry. Prices at The Five Quarter in Hailsham Place will be reduced for one day only to...

Community groups encouraged to apply for bulbs to brighten up their area

Community groups encouraged to apply for bulbs to brighten up their area

Community groups across County Durham have the opportunity of winning 2,000 bulbs to brighten up their area. Green-fingered champions across each of Durham County Council’s 14 Area Action Partnerships (AAPs) are in with a chance of securing the floral treats for their...

Free activities are keeping young ones entertained this summer

Free activities are keeping young ones entertained this summer

From bug hunting, basketball, den building and dancing, children across County Durham have been taking part in fun activities thanks to a summer holiday programme. Summer holiday activities are being supported by Durham County Council’s Area Action Partnerships...

Lucy Wood blog: What will adult life look like living with MS

Lucy Wood blog: What will adult life look like living with MS

Tomorrow (August 19), I will be celebrating my 18th birthday. An age that is supposed to mean the start of adulthood and becoming independent. In the past couple of years, I have learnt a great deal about my condition. What I have learnt has made me revaluate the...

Food fans enjoy a weekend full of flavour in Seaham

Food fans enjoy a weekend full of flavour in Seaham

County Durham’s foodies made the most of the sunshine and showers to enjoy this year’s Seaham Food Festival. Thousands of people visited the Durham County Council festival over the weekend to support independent traders, boost business recovery and enjoy two days of...

Flagship homes coming to Wingate housing development

Flagship homes coming to Wingate housing development

Bellway Durham is delivering 250 homes from its flagship Artisan Collection at a new development in Wingate. The developer is building a mix of two, three and four-bedroom detached, semi-detached and terrace houses at Wellfield Rise in the village. All 250 properties...

Covid secure space allows expansion of East Durham community support

Covid secure space allows expansion of East Durham community support

Vital community support programmes, halted due to the coronavirus pandemic, can now return safely thanks to funding from a local housing association. Residents in east Durham, with a particular focus on Blackhall Rocks, Deneside in Seaham, Shotton Colliery, Wheatley...