Auckland Castle has a long tradition of hospitality | Letter

Michael Turnbull, a former bishop of Durham, refutes a suggestion that the castle has not welcomed in visitors

It is good to know that Oliver Wainwright was impressed by his visit to Auckland Castle (Big bubbles, no trouble, G2, 5 November). It is remarkable what Jonathan Ruffer and the splendid Auckland Project team have achieved not only with the building itself but by a social renewal of Bishop Auckland town and indeed the wider north-east.

I hope, however, that the chief executive of the Auckland Project will not allow his enthusiasm to descend into hyperbole. It is simply not true that “the castle has always greeted the town with gates and a big wall”. In my time as the resident bishop many volunteers from the town enabled the public to have access. Many people enjoyed their wedding receptions there, Bishop Auckland Music Society held regular concerts in the castle and civic authorities held regular receptions.

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