A vibrant and diverse evangelical Christian community.

‘By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established’  Proverbs 24:3

Cranmer Hall, St John’s College,

3 South Bailey, Durham DH1 3RJ


There are various options available to anyone thinking of training at Durham.

Most single and married ordinands move to Durham and there is excellent provision for families as well as students. Each year, though, many also choose to commute, some who live locally anyway and others who commute on a weekly basis.

There are a variety of options for those who come without their family. Students can ‘live in’ with a room in St. John’s College or ‘live out’, sharing a house with other ordinands. In either case food is provided during term time and provision is made for accommodation in vacations. The basics like power and internet are also provided if a single student is living in accommodation arranged through college.

If you would prefer not to move your family we offer the ‘weekly boarder’ option. You live in Durham during the week, returning home at weekends.

Andy Grant, a former ordinand, says,

“My experience as a weekly boarder is very positive. I have a good sized room that is well furnished with internet connection. Whilst college life is very busy, I sometimes find space in the timetable to return home mid week to see my family, and see them as well every weekend (apart from two working weekends in the first year).

The food is of a very high standard, and you are kept well supplied with tea and coffee each day. There is a team of dedicated household staff who work hard to keep the college clean and tidy, and they also clean students rooms which is a welcome bonus. Cranmer Hall is also supported by an efficient team of administration staff who without their help and dedication, life would be far more complicated.

In all I strongly recommend Cranmer Hall as a place of theological learning and development, and would conclude that my quality of life as a weekly boarder is very good.”

Wendy Evans, a second-year ordinand and weekly boarder, says:

“My DDO encouraged me to look at Cranmer but I couldn’t see how it would, or could, work. But two things happened, I fell in love with the place and God, well he did his thing and I felt that I was being called here. Between College (flexiblity on some of the “rules” etc), Ministry Division (declaring me single for financial purposes) and my Diocese (being willing to give me money for train fares) the means were put in place so that my hubby could visit twice a term and I go home for reading weeks and long holidays. Its tough, and not for everyone, but it works; I’m where God wants me and loving it.”

For those students on the Mixed Mode pathway, once a partnership has been confirmed, Cranmer Hall will work with the context church to find suitable accommodation for you in the context church’s parish or nearby. If there is a small group of single Mixed Mode ordinands attached to the same church context, then shared accommodation will be found for you.

St. John’s College owns a selection of houses in locations around Durham and maintains a list of other suitable accommodation for rent. We have 12 purpose-built houses at Brass Thill, St Margaret’s Garth.  These houses are extremely popular – company whenever you need it, plenty of babysitters and help with the school run!  When you’ve started to look at Colleges and you visit Cranmer Hall you’ll be invited to look at the Brass Thill houses so you’ll be able to see for yourself what life could be like there.

However, there are only twelve houses in Brass Thill which means that there is a limited number available each year. We also own three other houses, all within 10-15 minutes walk of the other married accommodation.  All of our houses have three bedrooms but we do know that doesn’t suit everyone.  If you have any particular requirements, or if all of the college houses have been reserved, we will do our best to find you exactly what you need.

Brass Thill? I’d describe it as an amazing ready-made community of friends!
Julie Brazier, Brass Thill resident, 2010-11