College celebrates 65th birthday

This week Bishop Auckland College is celebrating its 65th anniversary.

In those 65 years, the college has established itself as a first-class provider of further and higher education in County Durham.

The forerunner to the College was a Technical Institute, with classes run in the Mechanics Institute in Victoria Avenue and other town centre locations.

The Technical Institute was opened in the old Railway Offices, Station Approach, in September 1950, enrolling 250 part-time day and evening students.

It was the demand for engineering courses needed by local industry that led to the first buildings for the Bishop Auckland Technical College (now Bishop Auckland College) on Woodhouse Lane, which were formally opened by County Alderman F. Hunt JP on February 26th 1958.


A new four-storey block was added including a gym and library in 1962.

Old building

The college was based there for 50 years until the opening of the new £32m campus at the same location in 2008. Bishop Auckland College Nursery opened its doors in 1988.


Other key developments have included the launch of a strategic partnership in 2014 with South West Durham Training (SWDT), an Ofsted ‘outstanding’ rated engineering and manufacturing specialist training provider located within the Aycliffe Business Park, Newton Aycliffe.


We’ve dug out a few photos from our archive as we take a trip down Memory Lane. We hope you like them!