Campaign invites visitors to step back in time

Campaign invites visitors to step back in time

Visit County Durham has launched a new national marketing campaign aimed at promoting the county’s diverse and fascinating heritage. 

Visitors are being invited to step back in time and experience Durham’s past through award-winning attractions, enthralling exhibitions and exciting events at venues including the world-renowned Durham Cathedral and Castle UNESCO World Heritage Site, Palace Green Library and Beamish Museum.


Exhibitions and events visitors can look forward to include Durham Cathedral’s Magna Carta and the Forest Charters (19 June to 9 September), presenting a unique opportunity to see all three issues of the cathedral’s Magna Carta. In addition, there is the anticipated return of the Treasures of St Cuthbert, a permanent collection of Anglo-Saxon artefacts (from 29 July).

Durham University’s Palace Green Library is the venue for a new exhibition, Time Machines: the past, the future, and how stories take us there (27 May to 3 September), where visitors can also see pages from the original manuscript of author HG Wells’ novel, The Time Machine.

Summertime at the world-famous open-air Beamish Museum brings a programme of special events, including the Georgian Fair (1-4 June), Festival of 50s (6-9 July), and Great North Festival of Agriculture (31 August-1 October).

VCD’s heritage campaign runs throughout April and May, and includes a Durham section on the Guardian website which will run for four weeks. The campaign has been made possible through the destination management organisation’s partnership with Durham Cathedral, Durham University’s Palace Green Library and Beamish Museum.   


Michelle Gorman, VCD’s managing director, said: “We’re proud to be running our heritage campaign which will further raise our profile nationally and attract even more visitors to experience our wonderful county – boosting the visitor economy. What sets Durham apart are the opportunities to really get hands on with history, and during 2017 there are even more exciting chances to get a glimpse of times gone by.”


Ruth Robson, Durham Cathedral’s head of marketing and events, said: “We are delighted to be involved in Visit County Durham’s campaign to promote the wonderful experiences that Durham has to offer, including our highly anticipated Open Treasure exhibitions Magna Carta and the Forest Charters and the Treasures of St Cuthbert. Durham Cathedral is steeped in history and heritage, just one of the reasons why we have been voted as BBC Countryfile Magazine’s Heritage Site of the Year 2017, and we hope this campaign will encourage many more people to visit Durham and experience its historic charm.”


To find out more, visit:



CAPTION: Michelle Gorman, managing director of Visit County Durham, second left, with representatives from Beamish Museum, Durham Cathedral and Palace Green Library’s Time Machines exhibition (featuring a young HG Wells).





Katharine Capocci  T: 03000 261223




Notes to editors:

  • Beamish – The Living Museum of the North is a world-famous open-air museum, telling the story of life in North East England, during the 1820s, 1900s and 1940s.
  • Magna Carta and the Forest Charters exhibition runs from 19 June – 9 September in The Collections Gallery of the Open Treasure exhibition space at Durham Cathedral. The exhibition presents a unique opportunity to see all three issues of the cathedral’s Magna Carta.
  • Time Machines: the past, the future, and how stories take us there, runs from 27 May – 3 September at Palace Green Library, Durham University. The library holds Durham University's special collections. The galleries are open to all and display treasures spanning millennia and the globe.

About Visit County Durham:

  •  Visit County Durham (VCD) is the Destination Management Organisation for County Durham working on behalf of businesses and public agencies. We came into being on 1 April 2006 and are a private, not-for-profit company limited by guarantee, with a board of directors including an executive director.
  • The company’s main funder is Durham County Council. The private sector also contributes financially to our work in return for benefits and activities that meet their needs.
  • Visit County Durham assists the county to fulfil its potential as one of North East England’s lead destinations, attracting visitors to the region from across the UK and from target overseas markets. Its objective is to ensure that the tourism sector performs to its maximum capacity and brings economic benefits to the county in the form of wealth and job creation. Its broad aims are to attract people to the area and to provide visitors with the best possible experience.

Published: 24, April, 2017

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