Ushaw College Archive

The purpose of the Ushaw College Archive is to collect, preserve and make available archives relating to the history of Ushaw College seminary, the wider post-Reformation Catholic world, the English College in Lisbon, and “at risk” Catholic institutions.

Collections held

The collection contains papers relating to the management of Ushaw College, including its financial, architectural, social and cultural history. It also includes the personal papers of nineteenth-century Catholic notables, such as St John Henry Newman, Cardinal Nicholas Wiseman, and Cardinal Henry Manning, as well as the records of twentieth century lay societies and other “at risk” Catholic institutions. The archives exist in a wide variety of formats: paper records; photographs; microfilm; film; tape recordings and born digital records.

The Archive is part of the Network of Archives & Libraries of the Catholic Church and as material is catalogued it will be made available online through the Catholic Heritage website.

Collecting policy

Since 2011 Durham University has been working with the Trustees of Ushaw College to catalogue library and archive collections held there and to make them accessible to researchers. The national profile of this work within the Catholic community in the UK has led to the transfer of archives of related organisations to Ushaw College, deposited or donated with Durham University. The existence of important archive and special collections material in this area at risk of loss – and the lack of obvious sustainable alternative provision – has been reflected in this collecting policy. Particular efforts are made to co-ordinate acquisitions with the archives of Catholic archdioceses and dioceses; other collecting Catholic educational establishments, including Downside Abbey, Douai Abbey and Stonyhurst; as well as other libraries and record repositories in the United Kingdom where this is appropriate.


The Ushaw College Archive is part of the library of Ushaw College which is currently being managed by Durham University. The reading room is open Monday-Thursday 10am-4pm by appointment only.

Contact Details

Enquiries to: Archivist

Address: Ushaw College, Durham DH7 9RH

Telephone: 0191 3719637


Twitter: @ushawlibrary


Further reading

‘The Ushaw Collection of Manuscripts’ by M Sharrall in Catholic Archives No 4 pp 4-8