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Consultation Findings

We thank those who engaged in the summer consultation, with almost 3000 visits to our dedicated consultation website. Over 75% of those who responded to our survey acknowledged the need for the redevelopment of Prince Bishops Place in light of recent changes in the retail sector and an increase in vacant units nationwide. 

We appreciate that part of securing the long-term future means more purpose-built student housing (c400 beds) and not everyone will welcome this. But as an appropriate location in the City Centre for higher density student housing it will help sustain the other uses, support the spend in the City Centre and be a positive student experience for those fortunate to study here. 

When Citrus acquired the Centre we knew student housing would be the driving force to make other things happen. However as a sole use, that was not giving back enough benefit to the wider community and would’ve been the wrong balance of uses for the City Centre.

The site had to work harder with a broader range of uses that catered for everyone. This means redeveloping retail, creating smaller units that independent traders can afford, working with those existing retailers that want to stay so once complete they can go back into the scheme with the ideal size store they need for their future.

Above all, the site had to create the opportunity for leisure uses, not just food and drink but other forms of leisure use which can contribute to the visitor experience and serve a broader age group.

465 Jobs

Construction jobs 

(temporary jobs over the 2 year build period)

195 FTE jobs

(Gross direct jobs associated withthe new hotel, PBSA space and retained retail floorspace)

£65.2m GVA

Economic output

(additional GVA p.a.)


Estimated business rate payments

(50% will accrue to the local authority)

Changing Face of Prince Bishops Place

It would’ve been easy to not create the new public square, by doing so we have lost valuable retail/leisure floorspace but retaining it would’ve been the wrong decision, the new square allows the Centre to put on events, have seating, landscaping and leisure uses which will enliven the space, all to draw people into the Centre, get creative and help support our new operators.


We needed a “Wow” factor and one of the failures of the 1990’s design was that it turned its back on the Cityscape, WHS and Conservation Area, a crime forgivable in the 1970s but arguably not in the 1990s. The first decision we made before any other was the public square, the orientation of it in line with the bridges and the infinity view it will give onlookers for many years to come along with addressing the eyesore of the turquoise stair core allowing creation of a more attractive link to the riverside.


Citrus continues to work hard to drive footfall and reduce vacancies within the centre, because despite being in financial deficit in the short term we want to support our retailers wherever possible and also try out new ideas and concepts, which some will have noticed walking the centre of late.


As any urban regeneration project, a scheme of this nature is a balance, aspiring to meet many competing expectations and inevitably has areas of compromise but we believe the scheme is working as hard as it can in all areas whilst being true to the original objective in offering something back to the City but also a viable platform for the future.    

Future Views

The images below illustrate the layout and appearance of the scheme as now proposed.


However, full detailed drawings as well as a range of technical assessments will be available for public comment on Durham County Council's Public Access planning database once the application has been submitted.

22657-8024 - Council Historic England Meeting-20.jpg
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