Hatfield College was founded in 1846, and is the second oldest college of Durham University. We take our name from Thomas Hatfield, Prince-Bishop of Durham in the 14th century, and were originally called Bishop Hatfield's Hall. Hatfield was founded by the Reverend David Melville, who was instrumental in creating furnished and catered residences with affordable fees, a system now replicated worldwide.
We maintain strong traditional roots today, but remain forward-looking. The college is nestled between Durham’s world heritage site and the banks of the river Wear, along one of the oldest streets in the city.
The college Motto is ‘Vel Primus Vel cum Primis’ which can be translated as ‘First or with the first’ or more commonly in recent times as ‘Be the best you can be’. This is something that the JCR encourages all students to take to heart, making the most of the vast array of opportunities on offer at University on top of excellent academic achievement.
Our college archivist, Mr Arthur Moyes, has put together a comprehensive history of Hatfield, an abridged version of which is available here: A History of Hatfield If you would like to buy the full History of Hatfield publication, please contact Cynthia Connolly.