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Supporting St Mary's College

A message from the Principal...


Thank you for taking the time to visit St Mary's College online donation pages, I'd like to use this opportunity to update you on College developments and on what we would like to achieve in the forthcoming year. 

Through the kind gifts we receive, we are able to support a wide range of student activities. In the last year, this included the purchase of sports equipment for a range of our teams, such as new footballs and ball bags for the Football Team, a cox box and walkie-talkies for the Rowing Team, and a rounders set and first aid kit for the Rounders Team. Similarly, donations have also been used to support student music and drama events, namely the fantastic production of ‘Grease’ – undoubtedly one of the most impressive student performances I’ve witnessed at St Mary’s.

This year the College also welcomed 250,000 new full-time residents with the establishment of the St Mary’s College Beekeeping Society, the first and only of its kind in Durham. Development Fund resources were used to buy protective clothing and other essential equipment, as well as food to help sustain the new bee colony over winter. Thanks to these developments, the first batch of St Mary’s College Honey should be available later in the year. 

To those who have donated in the past, I thank you sincerely for helping us to support all of these varied activities. As I am sure is obvious, the support provided by our alumni really enhances the College experience of our current students and helps them to engage and benefit from a wide range of extra-curricular experiences.

I am acutely aware that we remain in difficult times financially and many people do not have significant funds to give away. However, if you are considering donating to College again, please be assured that your gifts, whatever their size, are both sorely needed and hugely valued. Any gifts we receive this year will go straight to work funding activities in College. Our priorities this year are:

  • Launch of the 1899 Club: If you are in a position to help us in our plans, we would be extremely grateful.  A single gift of £100, £50 or £25 would have real impact, however, an ongoing regular gift of £18.99 per month, per quarter, or even per annum, would allow us to plan ahead more, as we could be assured of this income in future months and years. To acknowledge and thank donors who kindly give regularly to St Mary’s College, helping us build a lasting legacy and provide the best possible supportive environment for our students, we have created the 1899 Club. Named after the year in which St Mary’s College was first established, the 1899 Club awards its members a number of small benefits to thank them for their generous support. Like any donation, the direction of your regular gift can be specified on our donation form (e.g. Student Financial Hardship, Travel Bursaries, Development Fund etc.). We hope the benefits awarded to 1899 Club members demonstrate how much their regular kind financial support for St Mary’s is appreciated. More details about the 1899 Club can be found by selecting '1899 Club' in the drop down menu.

  • Student Financial Hardship: We continue to support students in hardship and financial difficulty.   Any of our students who run into financial difficulty whilst they are here are incredibly grateful for help we can provide with the cost of accommodation, books and general living. We provided a number of targeted grants of approximately £500 to students in this position last academic year and are keen to increase the number and size of the awards we can offer.  We are also keen to be able to support our postgraduate students for whom accessing funding is particularly difficult and would like to establish a postgraduate bursary or bursaries that can be awarded on an annual basis.


You can specify to which area you wish to donate using our online donation form.   ‘Student Financial Hardship’ will support undergraduate and postgraduate students who find themselves in financial difficulty through no fault of their own.  ‘Academic Support’ will provide funding for textbooks and other study resources which students can request directly from College.  ‘Postgraduate Bursary’ will target your donation towards our postgraduate students.  We are particularly keen to support our undergraduate students who wish to pursue postgraduate study at Durham.

  • Development Fund: Continues to help with funding student activities at St Mary’s. This is our primary fund open to all students and makes a huge difference to our students’ time here in College. Donations to this Fund remain a big priority. Any donation is greatly appreciated as student requests to this Fund can range from £50 to £500 depending on the club or society seeking support.  

Finally, this year we are also launching the ‘Sponsor your old room scheme’. In return for a donation of £150, we are giving Mary’s alumni the opportunity to sponsor a bedroom in College of their choosing (availability permitting) and have this room named after them for a period of 5 years per donation. A plaque bearing the details of the alumnus, including their name and date of attendance at St Mary’s, will be included on the plaque, which will be fixed upon the corridor wall beside the bedroom door. This is a great opportunity to leave a lasting and tangible legacy in College, and at the same time support our students. If you would like to sponsor your old College bedroom, please click on the Sponsor your Old Room' page under the 'Get Involved' section. The money donated through this scheme will go directly to our Student Facilities Fund to help invest in improving the facilities we can offer at St Mary’s College.

If you decide to give, please complete a donation form on the following pages on this section of our website, selecting which area within College you would like your donation to support.

As always, I shall look forward to welcoming you back to your College whenever you can come. With very best wishes.

Yours sincerely,

Simon Hackett
Principal, St Mary's College

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The 1899 Club - Regular gift

Leaving a Legacy

St Mary's College
Elvet Hill Road
+44 (0) 191 334 5719