Tag: St Cuthbert

Story of the day: Seeing the light in Durham

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Keeping a wintery theme, this story from the Daily Express is all about light.

Winter light, to be specific. The kind of soft, northeastern tones that have inspired artists and polymaths.

This story took me to Durham for the first time on assignment and I’m hoping to go back later this year in search of St Cuthbert – ‘Cuddy’ as the local call him.

But more of that later.

For now, here’s an extract with an, ahem, light-motif.

It was a view that inspired JMW Turner and Sir Walter Scott.

The sweeping panorama, looking across from Millhouse weir towards Durham Cathedral, galvanised the former to capture the light in watercolour and the latter to pen the lines:

“Grey towers of Durham. Yet well I love thy mixed and massive piles.”

“There is a unique clarity to the light in north-eastern Britain,” says Blue Badge guide Jan Williams, “even the monks knew to install their desks in north-facing cloisters to have the best of it.”

Read the full story, Durham Dazzles.

Have other places around the North inspired great works of art, or great works of literature?

Post your comments below.