The following statement was issued by Durham Cathedral this morning:
The following statement has been made today (1st May 2009) by the Chapter of Durham Cathedral
"Durham Cathedral has today served notice under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 on the current operators and occupiers of Durham Cathedral Shop requiring them to vacate the premises on 30th April 2010.
A new Cathedral Shop under the Cathedral's management will open on 1st May 2010 opposite the Undercroft Restaurant where, with the restaurant, it will provide a focus for visitor facilities.To enable the necessary work for the relocation of the shop, the exhibition in the Treasures will close at the end of 2009.
A new exhibition will reopen in the Claustral buildings at a date to be announced."
Background Information:The Chapter of Durham Cathedral has announced plans for the first phase of a programme of improvements to its facilities for visitors. This was included as a commitment in the Cathedral's Development Plan which was launched last year. In the first phase, the Cathedral Shop will be relocated from the Great Kitchen to the area presently occupied by the Treasures where, with the Undercroft Restaurant, it will provide a focus for visitor facilities and can include space for the Friends of Durham Cathedral and the Durham Cathedral Choir Association.
The new shop will open, under the Cathedral's management, on 1st May 2010.
To enable the necessary work for the relocation of the shop, the Treasures will close at the end of 2009. The Cathedral is working with the University on a feasibility study for their respective visitor facilities in the Cathedral and University buildings on the Durham peninsula. This will also take account of other visitor initiatives in the World Heritage Site. This project has a high priority in the Cathedral's Development Plan and includes a review of all the Cathedral's existing visitor attractions. Details of the new exhibition, which will focus on Cuthbert, Bede and the Cathedral's Benedictine heritage, will be announced later. Public access to the Great Kitchen will continue whilst the new initiatives are developed so that its historical architecture can be appreciated.
The Chapter will make further announcements as the plans progress but no further statement will be made at present.
and quite canny of the Cathedral to make the repossession of the shop look like part of the plans for redeveloping the Cathedral. We all know that the Brewers are really being thrown out for unethical business practices, and dragging the name of Durham Cathedral through the mud. Well done to Phil Groom, and to the staff and supporters of the Cathedral bookshop who have campaigned to get these charlatans booted out.
for all the background, see SPCK news notes and info, including a link to the petition to Durham Cathedral.
Updates: Twitter on Durham Cathedral, Matt Wardman has also posted, expect something in the Northern Echo tomorrow.