welcome to the collections gallery, at the heart of open treasure.


The Collections Gallery is a state-of-the-art exhibition gallery, designed to showcase some of the Cathedral's most precious artefacts through an exciting rolling programme of exhibitions. There will be a new exhibition every three to four months!

EXHIBITION PROGRAMME 2016


Saturday 5 November - Saturday 11 February 
TEXTILES: PAINTING WITH THE NEEDLE


Textiles have always played an important role in church and domestic life and Durham Cathedral boasts some of the best examples of church needlework from the past 1,100 years. A selection of the finest textiles from the Cathedral’s collection are included in this display.

Highlights include the Anglo-Saxon Dalmatic and 12th-century Peacock Silk from St Cuthbert’s tomb, embroidered fragments from the grave of Bishop William of Calais, and the embroidered Bible of Lady Arabella Stuart, cousin of King James I.

Also on display is the Charles I Cope, a rare example of 17th-century church needlework, and the Coronation Cope worn by the Bishop of Durham at the coronations of the last four British monarchs.

Contemporary textiles will be explored through the work of the Cathedral Broderers, and visitors can enjoy an exciting programme of talks, demonstrations, workshops and special events. 

To complement the exhibition in the Collections Gallery, a piece by Grayson Perry will also be on display in the Monks’ Dormitory. Created for his recent Channel 4 documentary series All Man, the piece explores the concept of masculinity and its place in the modern world. 

Monday 20 February - Saturday 10 June
BEASTS!


An exhibition of the weird and wonderful beasts and monsters which have fascinated people from earliest times. From illustrations of lions and dragons in medieval manuscripts, to early printed books of natural history which feature sea serpents and wyverns alongside images of the rhinoceros or giraffe, and the ‘evidence’ presented to prove the existence of such fantastic creatures as griffins and unicorns, this display will capture the imagination! 

Monday 19 June - Saturday 9 September
MAGNA CARTA AND THE FOREST CHARTERS


A unique opportunity to see all three issues of Durham Cathedral’s Magna Carta, including the only surviving copy of the 1216 issue, and further issues from 1225 and 1300. These will be displayed alongside their associated Forest Charters, from 1217, 1225 and 1300. In the 800th anniversary year of the first Forest Charter to be issued, this group of six documents will be displayed together for the first time, alongside an exhibition exploring the continuing significance and impact of these charters, and what they meant for Durham and the North of England.

COMING LATER IN 2017...

MAKING A JOYFUL NOISE! MUSIC AT DURHAM CATHEDRAL


A look at the lively tradition of music at Durham, from the earliest days of the monastery through to the present, and which still forms such a vibrant part of life at the Cathedral.

SAINTLY SISTERS

An exhibition exploring the lives of female saints, particularly those associated with the North.  Visitors will be able to trace the stories of well-known figures such as St Hild, St Birgit and St Margaret, as well as lesser-known ones such as St Ebba, St Everilda, and St Hereswitha.