South College welcomes its first new students


Durham’s newest college, South, has welcomed its first new students today to its Mount Oswald campus. Students at John Snow College have also arrived at the college’s permanent new home, also at Mount Oswald. 

The Mount Oswald site was completed this summer, and cost £80 million to develop. On the campus, South and John Snow share a University Hub building and multi-use games area.

Between them, the two colleges have 1,000 beds, and both have a mixture of en-suite rooms in ‘cluster flats’, and ‘town houses’ with shared bathrooms. Both colleges are self-catered, so each flat is equipped with its own kitchen and dining room. 

South College is the University’s first new college since 2006, and will be led by its Principal, Professor Tim Luckhurst, a former BBC Executive and ex-Editor of The Scotsman. Luckhurst was also previously founding Head of the Centre for Journalism at the University of Kent.

South College has chosen the motto ‘Libertas, Aequalitas, Civitas Totius mundi’, which translates as ‘Freedom, Equality and Global Citizenship’. The college has recruited 60 Pioneer Scholars, returning Durham students who have transferred from other colleges, including its JCR President, Richard Freeman, who is a former John Snow College student. 

“The students are determined that South must be a diverse and inclusive community”

Professor Tim Luckhurst, Principal of South College

Professor Tim Luckhurst told Palatinate: “It is a privilege and a delight to lead this superb new College at a great University with a rich history. I look forward to welcoming South’s first students. We are already working together to create the College’s identity and bring new ideas to enhance Durham’s finest traditions.

“The students are determined that South must be a diverse and inclusive community in which we can enjoy some of the best days of our lives and give meaning to the precious values expressed in our College motto.”

Richard Freeman, South College’s JCR President, commented: “Our students are at the forefront of South College, and they will have the unique opportunity to create traditions, sports teams, society groups and so much more.

“My hope is South College offers something for everyone and to put students in charge of their own student experience. I am excited to support and see what our students create.”

John Snow College (Image: Durham University)

John Snow College has relocated for the third time in three years. The college was based at the University’s Queen’s Campus in Stockton from its foundation in 2001, before it relocated with George Stephenson College to Howlands in 2018. For the 2019-20 academic year, John Snow was based in Rushford Court in Durham City, before now settling in its purpose-built, new facilities next to South College. 

Professor Carolyn Summerbell, John Snow College Principal, said:  “The John Snow College community are thrilled to have arrived at our wonderful destination on Mount Oswald. It feels very special to be here. 

“The College students, Alumni and staff have stayed strong and close during our journey to get here, and I am confident that our longstanding College ethos and traditions will flourish in this new environment. 

“The value of friendship and the importance of respecting others and our environment run ‘blue’ through the John Snow community. Our ambition to use our wisdom and curiosity to solve the wicked problems around us will be even more important this year and in the years to come.”  

“The transition across multiple locations has proven how strong the spirit of John Snow can be across Durham”

Jack Judge, John Snow College JCR President

John Snow College’s JCR President, Jack Judge, said: “The transition across multiple locations has proven how strong the spirit of John Snow can be across Durham – and I am incredibly excited for our students to now bring this spirit into our permanent home.”

Jeremy Cook, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Colleges and Student Experience), said: “The Mount Oswald development demonstrates our commitment to further enhancing the student experience, and particularly the Collegiate experience, on offer here at Durham.

Both colleges have introduced various precautions due to Covid-19. One-way systems are in place, and facilities including the gym will operate at reduced capacity, and hand sanitiser is available at various points around the site.

Images: Durham University

One thought on “South College welcomes its first new students

  • Hello I live on the David Wilson Homes development next to the new University facilities. I am interested in The gym facilities and would like to join the gym as a member of the public and would also be interested in any post you may have as a Personal Trainer. I am a fully qualified Level 3 PT. I am currently self employed and run a successful training and development programme at a gym in Gateshead

    Kind regards Diane Courtnell


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