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Durham County Record Office: the official archive service for County Durham and Darlington

How to Search for a Place

You can search for a place in five databases:

  • Catalogue
  • Place Names
  • Church Registers
  • Durham Collieries
  • Mining Durham's Hidden Depths

Search for a place in the Catalogue database

The Catalogue is a free text database. Search by keyword(s).

The option to include word variations in your search will not find all variations of proper names or place names. Try repeating your keyword search using alternative spelling to maximise your search results.

Keyword examples

Chester le Street
Fencehouses - repeat search for Fence Houses
Eggleston - repeat search for Egglestone
Silver Street
Hag Gate Farm
Shildon Engine Works

See examples of place name variations at the end of this page.

To find the most common spelling of County Durham place names browse the Place Names database.

Narrow or widen your search

Bollihope Common finds only Bollihope Common 
(search finds at least 8 matches in 7 catalogues)

Bollihope finds Bollihope; Bollihope Branch Railway; Bollihope Burn; Bollihope Burn Railway; Bollihope Carrs; Bollihope Common; Bollihope Craggs; Bollihope Fell; Bollihope Grains; Bollihope Moor; Bollihope Moors; Bollihope Railway; Bollihope Shaft; Bollihope Shield; Bollihope Spa; Bollihope Tract; 3 Bollihope Grove, Bishop Auckland 
(search finds at least 31 matches in 24 catalogues)

Bollyhope finds Bollyhope, Bollyhope House, Bollyhope Mill
(search finds at least 3 matches in 3 catalogues)

Search the Catalogue

Search the Place Names database

You can browse a list of County Durham place names or search by keyword to find which ecclesiastical parish a place was located in at a given date.

Browse the list of place names to identify multiple locations with the same place name.

Search Place Names

Search for a place in the Church Registers database

Browse a list of parish names or search by keyword(s) to find what church registers we hold for a given place.

Search Church Records

Search for a place in the Durham Collieries database

Browse by place or township, browse by map or search by keyword(s) to find information about collieries in the Durham coalfield.

Search Durham Collieries

Search for a place in the Mining Durham's Hidden Depths database

Search by keyword or browse the Colliery/Lodge/Other Location drop-down lists in the options to refine your search.

Find information about Durham miners associated with a specific place or colliery.

Search Durham's Hidden Depths

Place name variations

Hyphenated names

Chester-le-Street or Chester le Street
Hetton-le-Hole or Hetton le Hole
Middleton-in-Teesdale or Middleton in Teesdale
Stockton-on-Tees or Stockton on Tees

Punctuation is disregarded. Your search will return the same number of results for keywords Chester-le-Street or Chester le Street.

Split names

Bearpark or Bear Park
Fencehouses or Fence Houses
Lanehead or Lane Head

Names used for more than one location

Grindon [Stockton] and Grindon [Sunderland]
Hamsterley [Weardale] and Hamsterley Colliery [Medomsley]
Stanley [Beamish] and Stanley [Crook]

Browse the Search Place Names database to identify multiple locations with the same place name.

Spelling variations

Barnard Castle or Bernard Castle
Eggleston or Egglestone

Alternative names

Bishop Auckland, previously known as Auckland St. Andrew and Auckland St. Helen.  Search for Auckland rather than Bishop Auckland to increase search results.

Sunderland, north of the river Wear, previously known as Monkwearmouth
, south of the river Wear, previously known as Bishopwearmouth