An active sub-group of the Bishop Auckland Town Team is the ‘Events Team’ who organise and carry out a number of events throughout the year to help raise the profile and to increase the footfall in the town.
Visit the Town Team Events page for a full list of list of historic and upcoming events.
2020 – Love Bishop Auckland!
The Town Team had a great year in 2019, as Bishop Auckland continued to redevelop. As the year ended, the FREE public street WiFi technology had all been installed. This should help people discover what is happening in Bishop Auckland.
The re-opening of Auckland Castle in November 2019 has so far proved to be a great success. Not only did over 1,000 people visit the Castle on its official opening day (2nd November 2019) but tens of thousands have visited since.
The 4th season of Kynren last year was another huge success. This year the extension of The Park on the Eleven Arches site means that the fifth season of Kynren this year, will be an even more spectacular event.
The Town Team’s events programme again proved to be popular. Starting with the Easter Eggstravaganza, we introduced a new best decorated egg children’s competition. The response was fantastic and helped make a memorable event.
Buskers Day in July provided some street music around the town centre. Some of the buskers are getting well known around the area and are making their own records.
In August, we helped the Fore Bondgate traders hold a ‘Street Party’ which proved to be very popular. As well as the Vikings, Star War Troupers and Wyatt Earp, many of the traders filled the street with decorations. Many traders reported increased sales in comparison to other Saturdays.
The biggest event of the year for us was ‘Bishop Celebrating Together‘ and the Bishop Auckland Town Council was able to hold the annual Horticultural & Produce Show in McIntyres. A full entertainment programme was staged in the Market Place, featuring local talent and the Fore Bondgate Traders joined in. Over 2,500 people attended.
Monster Saturday in October extended from the Newgate Centre into Fore Bondgate. Many children dressed up in spooky costumes, making it another hard judging task for Dave Wilson, Manager of the Newgate Shopping Centre Centre.
Christmas saw the return of Advent Windows with the AlterNATIVITY theme, our Indie-cember shop local scheme and of course we brought Santa back to Bishop Auckland where a record 700 children had their photo taken with him.
This year will see Bishop Auckland takes centre stage for the Passion Play on Good Friday (10th April) and the return of the popular Bishop Auckland Food Festival on the 18th and 19th April organised by Durham County Council.
We are extremely grateful for the support and financial contributions from the Bishop Auckland Town Council and to the businesses, sponsors of our various events. Thanks needs to also be given to David and Pam Pott and Laura Brenchley for their contribution to the Advent Windows Event.
We are also grateful to Claire and Tony Gibbons from the Park Head Hotel and of course to our Town Team volunteers, a big ‘Thank You’!! Without the time our volunteers give, there would be no programme!
Chair, Bishop Auckland Town Team
2019 – Building On Success
“2018 proved to be a very successful year for the Bishop Auckland Town Team. Not only were new events added to our annual programme, but more people were attracted into the town to enjoy them.
In our Easter Eggstravaganza, Spectrum Roller Skaters performed in the Newgate Centre and were sensational. Despite the poor weather, the event proved very popular. The addition of two vintage car shows helped attract people to the Market Place. The one held in July had two bands play, both of which were very popular. Councillor Sam Zair helped fund the bands as part of Durham’s Brass event.
On the 14 April, the Town Team held an event commemorating the three days in 1918 that a tank came to Bishop Auckland to raise funds. In the three days, £400,000 was raised for the War effort, the equivalent of £32 million today! Original artwork from Eric Thompson, Bondgate Gallery and ‘Somewhere the Sun is Shining’ was donated for auction. In total, £500 was raised by the Town Team towards the MRI Scanner appeal for Bishop Auckland General Hospital.
Also new to the events programme was the 1940s day held in June. Using several military vehicles, the Market Place had a stage erected and entertainers drew in many people to the town. In addition, the Merry Monk, Fifteas Vintage Tearoom and the Smokehouse held themed 1940s events on the evening. Other events repeated from last year included the Busker’s Days, New Car Show, Monster Saturday, Small Business Saturday, Santa & Christmas Entertainment along with the return of Advent Windows.
One of the main highlights was the Bishop Celebrating Together event in September. Over 3,000 people attended the event throughout the day. Posts on social media related to the day’s events reached around 91,000 people. The day involved coordinating the events of the Town Team, the Town Council Horticultural & Produce Show, St Anne’s Church and the special preview open day of the Auckland Tower. Financial support from 3 local businesses helped to cover the cost of the main stage, these were Vest Construction, D Stewart Scaffolding and Vinovium Associates.
This year we will also be developing our #LoveBishopAuckland campaign. We hope to publicise the best of Bishop Auckland with an easily identified logo. We will put a challenge forward to see who can get the logo the furthest in the world and in the most interesting or unusual place.
During 2019 we anticipate Auckland Castle re-opening, as well as the new Spanish Gallery, and good progress made with the Walled Garden. Kynren has announced the dates for the 2019 season and the start of the extension to the Eleven Arches site. While 2019 will still have its challenges, it should be a year of constructive growth.
We are extremely grateful for the support and financial contributions from the Bishop Auckland Town Council. A special thanks to Claire and Tony Gibbons from the Park Head Country Hotel, David and Pam Pott with the Advent Windows, the local shops and businesses support. Finally, a huge thank you to the volunteers on the Events Sub-Group, without the time these volunteers give there would be no programme.”
Chair, Bishop Auckland Town Team