The 900-year-old Auckland Castle in Bishop Auckland is the former private palace of some of the most powerful and influential men in British history and one of the best-preserved medieval bishops’ palaces in Europe. The castle will once again welcome visitors from November 2019, following the completion of multi-million pound conservation work.
Known popularly as Prince Bishops due to the authority and wealth they commanded on a national scale, second only to the monarch. These men governed the North of England for more than 750 years and were granted exceptional secular and religious powers by the King of England in 1081. The significance of the Prince Bishops and legacy of their power from medieval times to the present is displayed through the story of Auckland Castle.
From 2 November 2019, visitors to Auckland Castle will be able to follow in the footsteps of former Bishops and witness how these figures changed history, uncovering the fascinating stories and personalities of its past residents.
Visitors will begin their journey at St Peter’s Chapel, the sacred heart of the palace and an active site of worship, before following the impressive 18th century processional route through the Castle’s State Rooms. Visitors will discover private apartments, where the Bishops lived together with their families - open to the public for the very first time.
Each room in Auckland Castle will present episodes in the life of a particular Bishop, capturing a specific moment in time. Art lovers will be able to admire the extraordinary Jacob and his Twelve Sons, the famous series of 12 paintings by Spanish master Francisco de Zurbarán, which were purchased by Bishop Trevor in 1756, alongside Nicolas Poussin’s The Triumph of Pan from the National Gallery’s Collection, which will be on display at Auckland Castle from 5 October 2019 – 5 January 2020.
The Auckland Project is located just 11 miles from the historic Durham City and only 10-15 minutes from the A1, it is the perfect place for a group day out.
Groups receive a special discounted ticket price when booking in advance for visits taking place from Wednesday to Friday and can book tailored group menus, for both lunch and afternoon tea.
See below to download more information about group visits to Auckland Castle.
- Access Statement - Please see below
Travel & Trade
- Free/Discounted Entry for Coach Driver
- Free/Discounted Entry for Tour Guide
- Groups: Discounts Available
|Auckland Castle Park (1 Jan 2020 - 31 Dec 2020)|
* Kindly note: the Castle is now closed for restoration, however keep a look out as we will have many activities throughout 2019.
Pre-booking is essential by calling 01388 743 797 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org