NEWS: The Auckland Project reopens | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Image: The Spanish Gallery

The Georgian splendour of Auckland Castle reopens to history, heritage and culture-lovers from Wednesday 23rd March, presenting a wealth of surprising opportunities to interact with the region’s unique history.

Auckland Castle is the seat of the Prince Bishops of Durham, who governed vast swathes of North East England. One of the best-preserved Bishop’s palaces in Europe, the castle lies at the centre of the The Auckland Project, the regeneration charity who have lovingly restored the castle and its surroundings. Also part of the complex is The Spanish Art Gallery, the UK’s first gallery dedicated to the art, history and culture of Spain, and home to Francisco de Zurbarán’s series of Spanish masterpieces Jacob And His Twelve Sons, for over 250 years. The paintings mark the centrepiece of the gallery, which provides visitors with an opportunity to enjoy the largest collection of 16th and 17th Century Spanish artworks outside of London, including work by El Greco, Murillo and Velazquez.

There’s more art on display at the Mining Art Gallery, which depicts life in the coal mines and the inspiring communities which grew around them; highlights of the collection include work by Norman Cornish and Tom McGuinness.

Visitors can get out and about in the grounds too, with a deer park containing 150 acres of historic parkland, a walled garden and the Auckland Tower, a 29 metre tower which provides 360° views across Auckland Park, Bishop Auckland town and the rural landscape beyond.

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