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Special Arrangements

Student at graduation

Graduates are given the opportunity to advise of any special requirements for themselves and guests when registering for the ceremony. Graduates and guests can also contact the Ceremonies Unit direct to discuss any special arrangements or accessibility issues that may affect either themselves or their guests while attending Congregation so we can provide advice or support as appropriate.

Please note there is no public parking on Palace Green (the area between the Castle and the Cathedral) and remember that Durham city centre will be busy on Congregation days. Graduates and their guests are advised to use the various car parks situated around Durham, including Durham's Park and Ride service, and metered on-street parking which is available all over the city. Graduates and guests with mobility issues can be dropped off at the bottom of Owengate (the road that leads to Palace Green) by car or taxi. 

Information for students with additional requirements

  • On arrival, graduands need to collect robes from the Pemberton Building, and register their attendance.
  • Either guests or graduands need to collect tickets from the marquee.
  • Graduates gather in the Great Hall of University College/Castle and are lined up in procession order in the courtyard. Graduates then process across Palace Green to the Cathedral. During the ceremony graduates walk up 2 steps onto the stage to shake hands with the Presiding Officer before returning to their seats.
  • If you have any concerns with this process or may require assistance, contact the Ceremonies Unit.

Information for guests with additional requirements

Congregation guests enter the Cathedral from approximately 45 minutes prior to the ceremony from the Congregation Information Point on Palace Green to the Galilee Chapel entrance before being guided into the main body of the Cathedral. Guests may have to wait to enter the Cathedral and maybe standing outside for a period of time.

Guests using wheelchairs will be escorted into the Cathedral and are requested to report to the Congregation Information Point, with a companion if they wish, 45 minutes before the ceremony.

Guests with mobility issues will be escorted into the Cathedral to take a seat in the Galilee Chapel and should report to the Congregation Information Point, with a companion if they wish, 1 hour and 10 minutes before the ceremony.

Please note, companions must also have a ticket to enter the Cathedral.

Additional Information

  • Visitors to Durham are able to hire wheelchairs and electric scooters from Durham Shopmobility. Do contact them in good time as stock may be limited and is subject to availability.
  • Induction loop facilities are available throughout the seating areas in the Cathedral and those who require it should use the 'T' position on their hearing aid.
  • TV screens and speakers are installed throughout the Cathedral to support the enjoyment of the ceremony.