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

Residential Training

At Cranmer Hall we are passionate about the value of a residential theological training experience.

The future mission of the Church is going to require ministers who are godly in character, well-resourced theologically and spiritually and able to serve in diverse contexts.  Training residentially at Cranmer Hall gives students a unique opportunity to invest in deep theology that feeds good mission, in their own prayer lives, in broadening their experience and practice of ministry and mission in different places and becoming more Christ-like in character through living in community.

Training residentially is an intense experience, but feedback from previous students confirms our belief that it pays dividends for a lifetime of mission and ministry.

Cranmer Hall aims to train Christlike missional leaders, who serve by connecting church, theology, and world. In line with our founding purpose, Cranmer continues to prepare people for ministry in the Church of England.

Candidates for ordained ministry (known as ‘ordinands’) who have been sponsored by a Diocese of the Church of England and recommended by a Bishops’ Advisory Panel follow a variety of different training pathways, depending on age, prior theological study, and prior ministerial experience, among other factors.

Through our admissions process and in consultation with you and your Diocesan Director of Ordinands (DDO), Cranmer Hall seeks to offer the pathway that is right for you. The three main considerations are length, mode, and academic programme of study. These three factors impact one another.

Length of Study

Cranmer is passionate about a community that will form you as you prepare for ministry. Ordinands under 32 normally train for three years, while those over 32 normally train for two years. In conversation with your Diocese and for a variety of reasons a shorter or longer period of training may be agreed.

Mode of Study

Cranmer is embedded in the North East of England. Residential students live, study, and worship in College, and spend significant time in both termly and block placements in and beyond the North East.

Academic Programme

Cranmer is committed to excellent teaching at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. We offer the Certificate, Diploma, and BA in Theology, Ministry, and Mission (BATMM). Those with some prior theological study may be admitted directly to the second year of the BA. It is also possible for students with a good first degree to study the two-year BA in Theology and Religion (BATR) in the Durham University Department of Theology and Religion.

At postgraduate level we offer the MA in Theology and Ministry (MATM), which ordinands take over two or three years whilst auditing BA modules to complete all formational requirements. In some cases an ordinand might undertake doctoral study during training, in which case we offer the Doctor of Theology and Ministry (DThM), delivered jointly with the Department of Theology and Religion, or a Department PhD.

Specific Pathways

The three variables above can combine in the following ways, all of which can be taken in Residential or Mixed Mode:

2-year Diploma TMM

3-year BATMM

2-year BATR + 1-year MATM

2-year MATM

3-year MATM

2-year BATMM + 1-year MATM


  • Learn how to understand, interpret and communicate the Bible, and to integrate it with your theology and practice.
  • Become familiar with the shape of Christian history and doctrine, learn how to engage in theological study, and how to lead worship.
  • Be introduced to the riches of the Christian spiritual tradition, grow in your understanding of prayer, and learn skills required for the formation of Church life, such as preaching, teaching, and pastoral care.
  • Engage with the questions of Christian faith in the world: the theology and practice of mission and evangelism; issues raised by sociology and psychology; other world faiths; life in the inner city; discrimination and power, conflict and resolution and the integration of ethics with biblical and theological study.
  • Participate in our extensive placement programme; being shaped in ministry for ministry, and making a difference to the communities in which you are serving.
  • Because Durham’s degrees are modular and all our awards are Durham University awards, students have the opportunity to take some courses at the Department of Theology and some three year students read for the ‘Department Degree‘ in their first two years.

How are courses structured?

Most of our students training for ordination are full time, although some travel into Durham daily or weekly to study. Other students can be full time or part time, as they choose. The teaching programme follows the University terms, and teaching is delivered from a Monday to a Thursday giving students a healthy rhythm of a study day, a placement day and a day off each week.

There are two sets of criteria which an ordinand has to meet; the University’s criteria under which the academic award is made, and the Ministry Division’s criteria which are deemed necessary for ordination. Our programmes in Theology and Ministry are tailored to meet these demands and mean that a student engages in both academic and vocational studies throughout their course.