All your latest news and events
August 2021
Farewell From Our Vice-Chancellor and Warden, Professor Stuart Corbridge
Following his six-year leadership of Durham University, our retiring Vice-Chancellor and Warden, Professor Stuart Corbridge, says farewell to our alumni and supporter community in this video.

From 1 August 2021, alumnus and current Provost & Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Antony Long, will take over as interim Vice-Chancellor until the arrival of Professor Karen O'Brien in January 2022.

*Photo credit: Anna Horwich
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2020-21: End of Year Round-up
As this academic year draws to a close, we reflect on some of the many achievements of our Durham community.
Take a look back
Record Number of Durham Stars Going for Olympic Gold at Tokyo
We are proud to announce that we have one current student and six fellow graduates representing their home nations at the upcoming Tokyo Olympic Games. Durham University has a rich history of sporting success: since 2013, we have been Britain’s Number 1 Team Sport University, supporting over 50 capped internationals per year, in addition to developing an ever-growing performance and participation programme.

We have seen early success in the medals tables with Angus Groom (Natural Sciences, Hatfield College, 2010-13) winning a silver medal in Rowing.
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Chancellor's Circle: Celebration of University Philanthropy at Mansion House
On Monday 19 July, eleven new inductees were welcomed into the University Chancellor's Circle - a community of our most senior benefactors and supporters. Sir Thomas Allen welcomed Circle members and was proud to preside over the presentation of an honorary degree, the Dunelmensis Award and several Chancellor's Circle medals and certificates
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World-Class Music Experience at DU Marked by New Steinway Partnership
At least 58 new Steinway & Sons pianos are to be installed across our campus as we join the All-Steinway Initiative, with an intention to become an All-Steinway University in 2022. Joining the initiative makes a significant statement about our commitment to excellence in music, with the new pianos set to join our existing collection of nine Steinway instruments.
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Durham Recognised for its Support of the Armed Forces
We’re are deeply proud to announce that we have received a silver award by the Ministry of Defence’s Employer Recognition Awards Scheme (ERS) for our support of the Armed Forces.
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University to Offer Free Skills Bootcamps as Part of a National Scheme
We are delighted to be able to offer two national Skills Bootcamps, developed by the Department for Education to boost career prospects in the technology sector.
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Partnering Durham’s First Fringe Festival
We are proud to be a partner in Durham’s first Fringe Festival, taking place across the city from 28 July until 1 August 2021. The Fringe Festival will bring 27 performing arts companies to the city, with a varied programme.
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Countdown to COP26 – Inspiring Change
Last month in our Countdown to COP26 series we were looking at our own sustainability commitments and how we’re innovating and inspiring others.
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Upcoming Events
Effective Job Applications
Wednesday 4 August 2021, 6pm (BST)
Our careers team join us to give some practical advice on applying for new opportunities, whether for your first job, a new challenge, or getting back into the job market.

Skills for the Future
Wednesday 11 August 2021, 6pm (BST)
In an ever-changing world, developing the right skills to advance your career has never been more important. Join us to find out more about what skills will be necessary in a digital employment environment, in this interactive session with our Durham careers team.

NanoBattleBots: Defender of Mankind
Wednesday 15 September 2021, 6pm (BST)
Our ‘nanomachines’ are the ‘laser-guided missiles’ in humanity’s fight against cancer. They ‘burst’ cancer cells by drilling into them, leaving healthy cells alive. This precision-guided approach could be a versatile treatment for many types of cancer with minimal side-effects. Join Robert Pal, Associate Professor of Chemistry to talk about this fascinating research.

COVID-19 Detection Dogs - The Research
Wednesday 29 September 2021, 6pm (BST)
Our medical detection dogs have been trained to sniff out Covid-19 in people and the initial results show they can do it very reliably. Join Professor Steve Lindsay, from our Department of Biosciences, to learn about the findings from this widely publicised study.

Crystal Structure in Pharmaceuticals
Thursday 14 October 2021, 6pm (BST)
Ever heard of blue tomato ketchup? Seen hair-like braids on the nanoscale? Professor Steed from our Department of Chemistry takes us on a journey through the wonders of polymorphism – multiple types of crystal packing in solids. Polymorphism is now big business in areas such as drugs, agrochemicals and explosives.

Thursday 4 November, 5.30pm (GMT)
Convocation is the annual meeting of alumni. We hear from Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost, Professor Antony Long, on the past year and a view to the future along with the opportunity to ask your questions.

View all upcoming events
Check our events pages regularly for all of the upcoming alumni events across the world.
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Dunelmensis Award
Vice-Chancellor Professor Stuart Corbridge was delighted to host Professor Carl Stephen Patrick Hunter OBE (Arts Combined, Hatfield College, 1981-84), his wife Dorothy, and members of the Coltraco team at Hollingside to present Professor Hunter with his Dunelmensis Award. In addition, outstanding 2020 and 2021 awardees include: Charles Wilson (Geography, Grey College, 1983-86) for his longstanding support to the Dept. of Geography and the Institute for Hazard, Risk and Resilience; Smiti Kumar (Management Studies, Graduate Society, 1980-81) for her leadership of Dunelm USA and advisory support to Durham University Business School; Joanna Baker MBE (French, Collingwood College, 1977-81) for her exceptional contribution to Council, the Durham Inspired Campaign Board, the Institute for Medieval and Early Modern Studies, and the School of Modern Languages and Culture; and Rashmi Misra (Computing, St Mary's College, 1989-92) for her commitment to Computer Science and supporting alumni engagement in the US. Richard Roberts (Law & Politics, St John's College, 1976-79) received his award earlier this year for his foundation and ambassadorship of the Durham Student Art Prize.
New Purple Radio Show - Durham Island Disks
Student Charlotte McCann will be interviewing Durham alumni to discuss life after university, careers, and of course your favourite tunes, all interlaced with nostalgia and your Durham memories. If you are interested in being interviewed, please email Charlotte.
Louise (Luna) Gladman (Economics, Van Mildert College, 2001-04)
Louise looks back at her time at Durham and discusses writing her first book.
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Andy Egerton (Chemistry, Grey College, 1995-98)
Since graduating, Andy has gone on to enjoy a successful career at Ready Steady Store. 
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Class Notes
Dr Karen Aplin (Natural Sciences, Trevelyan College, 1994-97) is the 2021 recipient of the James Dungey Lectureship of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Police Chief Constable Simon Cole (English Literature, St Cuthbert’s Society, 1988) has been awarded the Sir Robert Peel Medal by The University of Cambridge for outstanding leadership in evidence-based policing, recognising the contribution of Leicestershire Police under his leadership.

Professor Mike Hulme
(Geography, Grey College,1978-81) has recently published Climate Change in the Key Ideas in Geography series from Routledge.

Florence Jackson (Sociology, St Cuthbert’s Society, 2011-14) is to swim the channel raising funds for Tom’s Fight, aiding Thomas Lazarides after his accident last summer.

Thomas Lazarides
(Business Studies, 2018-21) was involved in a life-changing accident last summer. You can follow his rehab story @toms_fight

Danielle Phillips
(Business Administration, St Aidan’s College, 2017-21) business Inside Out Communications Consulting has recently celebrated its first birthday since it was launched.

Muhammad Faisal Sharif (New and Renewable Energy, Ustinov College, 2015-17) a Commonwealth Scholar, works for the Government of Pakistan's Ministry of Energy Power Division.

Martin Ferguson Smith
(Emeritus Professor of Classics), is the author of In and out of Bloomsbury: Biographical Essays on Twentieth-Century Writers and Artists, published by Manchester University Press in July 2021.

Dr Natalie Starkey (Geological Sciences, University College, 2001-05) science book Fire & Ice: The Volcanoes of the Solar System will be published in September.

Tim Wellock (Geography, Hatfield College, 1970-73) has written a cricket book called The Best of Durham, outlining the highlights of the first 26 years of the county's first-class life, which he covered for The Northern Echo, Wisden and Daily Telegraph. Tim was a member of the university team which won the UAU Championship in 1972. Email Tim at to purchase a copy.

Former Dunelm USA Director and North American Development Board Chair, Commander Dr Anthony Wells (Modern German History, St Cuthbert’s Society, 1965-69) latest novel Room39 and the Lisbon Connection was published last month.
Neville's Cross
Neville's Cross College was founded in 1921 and celebrates its centenary this year. There will be a celebratory reunion on Saturday 23 October. We will be compiling recollections and photographs of the old college, with an aim to display them at the 100th anniversary event in October and we would be delighted to welcome any of our alumni members who may have connections with Neville’s Cross College to the event.
St Cuthbert's Society
To mark the end of Professor Elizabeth Archibald’s time as Principal, St Cuthbert’s Society are thrilled to launch a Performing Arts Appeal to support our finalists who go on to further study in the creative industry.
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St John's College
St John's is looking forward to the next Lumiere and hopes to welcome Johnians for an alumni event in College on Saturday 20 November. If you plan on visiting Durham for the festival, get in touch with us at
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Trevelyan College
At Trevelyan, we encourage our students to venture out of their comfort zone and be the best they can be, as reflected in our tagline – Explore without limits. We are delighted to report that there were a number of successes for Trevelyan students at the recent Durham University Volunteering Awards, including ‘Volunteer of the Year’, the ‘Best Educational Project Award’, the ‘Best Fundraising Activity Award’ and the ‘Above and Beyond Award’. Our students have worked incredibly hard and created amazing impact on the community.
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University College
Castle’s alumni reunion is going virtual again this year. Whether you would like to learn a little bit more about the past year and our plans for the future at a reception with the Principal, meet up with your old friends for a tea party or simply grab a pint and try your luck at our evening quiz – we hope there will be something for everyone to try! We look forward to seeing as many of you as we can on Zoom on 10-11 September 2021. Registration details will be circulated shortly.
Ustinov College
The Pantomath, which aims to reflect and celebrate the breadth and depth of research and scholarly activity undertaken by the entire Ustinov College community, is looking for new submissions. We are looking for short summaries of your academic work or interests. Format will follow the Harvard referencing style. Please consider that your audience will not be specialized and reduce technical terms where possible. Contributions are warmly welcomed from our alumni so if you want to contribute to the issue, just let us know by emailing by 30 September 2021.
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Business School
The Lemonade Principle podcast returns with a special live episode recorded during a recent virtual event for Durham students on the subject of global trade.
Alumnus and long-standing friend of Durham University, and former guest on the podcast, Dr Carl Stephen Patrick Hunter OBE recently joined our host Chris Roberts for our first ever episode of the podcast to be recorded in front of a live virtual audience.
Listen to podcast
Careers & Enterprise
We are delighted to announce that Careers & Enterprise have recently been awarded the Building Effective Partnerships AGCAS Award of Excellence for the DICE project. The submission was commended on developing internal and external partnerships that have resulted in regional business growth, job creation and graduate retention.
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Centre for Catholic Studies
All invited to our online conference on Lived Catholicism – investigating how Catholicism is actually lived in the real world.
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We are sorry to report the death of distinguished composer and musicologist Dr Anthony Payne (Music, St Cuthbert's Society, 1958-61). Professor Jeremy Dibble shares his memories.
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What's it like to be a man in the 21st Century? How are feminist issues relevant to men? Join practitioners, activists and researchers to discuss these questions and more on Now and Men, a new monthly podcast exploring masculinity, gender equality and the lives of men and boys.
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