Autumn Leaves, Students Return, Alumni Thrive


Defining Inspiration

It’s an honour to be writing to you having been recently confirmed as Director of Development and Alumni Relations at Durham University.

I grew up 20 miles away from Durham and the University was simply a palace on the horizon to me - it was a beacon of aspiration, learning, beauty and success. Many years later, having worked here for almost nine years and having met with so many of our alumni and supporters around the world, I realise that my younger self didn’t know the half of it.

It is a great privilege for my team and I to serve this incredible global community: bringing you together, keeping you engaged with Durham, and working in close partnership with you to advance the cause and potential of this wonderful institution in so many ways. We hope we can continue to work with you into the future to make the experience of being connected with this institution second to none.

And this has been an EPIC year for our alumni and supporters...

Over 5,500 of our alumni have registered for almost 160 Durham events around the world. In this month alone - the ‘September to Remember’ - we have welcomed almost 1,000 graduates and friends across 13 cities in the United States and Asia, joined by senior academics and figures across our network.

Over 2,500 of you volunteered your time to assist with reunions, providing internships, participating in advisory and development boards, giving talks to our students, hosting local and national events, mentoring and supporting recent graduates, launched and funded businesses: the compendium of ways in which our community gives back to Durham and, importantly, to each other is endless.

Over 110,000 individuals have engaged with our alumni stories via Newswire, our alumni web pages, and social media. Our ambition is to use our communications and media resources to bring you even more content, and to give you a range of access points to university and alumni resources, making it easier to stay connected and helping to raise the profile of Durham across the globe.

As we have started work on the very early stages of our Durham Inspired campaign, we have received some of the most transformative philanthropic donations in the history of the University, all of which will support the next generation of inspiration and leadership at Durham. We have received over 1,075 new donations, providing scholarships and bursaries to help our students reach every corner of their potential, enabling research which shapes society, and making our college and university facilities truly world-class.

As a University, our mission is to inspire the extraordinary. Working with our alumni and friends in new ways, we hope our shared mission, together, will be to define that inspiration - to make it visible, tangible and beneficial in so many ways. We look forward to making this yet another incredible year for Durham.

With sincere thanks

Get in touch:

Andrew Harston BA (Hons), CertPFS
Director, Development and Alumni Relations
The Palatine Centre, Durham University
Stockton Road, Durham DH1 3LE

t +44 (0) 191 334 6093

Assistant: +44 191 334 6308

Development and Alumni Relations Office
The Palatine Centre
Stockton Road

0191 334 6305

The full team is currently working out of the office due to Covid-19. We always love to hear from you but it may take us a little longer than usual to respond - especially by mail or telephone. Thank you for bearing with us. Please do get in touch with us online for anything time-sensitive at