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Background

The Four Clocks Centre is a community hub in the heart of Bishop Auckland town centre. This hub provides a range of resources and services for the local community driven by the dedication of Bishop Auckland Community Partnership (BACP).

Four Clocks Centre community hub in Bishop Auckland

Photo taken by Aiden Dawson

This centre is also one of the prominent landmarks of Bishop Auckland, with it’s iconic clock tower (with the four clock faces which is what it’s named after) visible from beyond. This is an old building that was originally a church yet it is fully accessible and is now a hive of activity with many different charities and organisations now occupying the rooms as well as a lovely café downstairs.

Among the many services operating here, it is home to the Citizens Advice bureau, weekly support groups including breastfeeding support and Time 4 Toddlers along with The Family Contact Centre. We will now delve into the reasons why this community hub is worth having a look at.

Why you should this community centre in Bishop Auckland

This community hub has resources and services to benefit all different age groups and people with different needs and backgrounds. Pop in for a cuppa or a bite to eat for lunch, or work with one of the services/charities or even join one of the projects or clubs.

Services

Currently, The Four Clocks Centre is home to the following organisations which all provide services to benefit the local community and County Durham:

All the above charities have recently gained access to the various office rooms and spaces for them to run their services everyday.

Our organisation- Eric Knows currently owns one of the spaces at this community hub in Bishop Auckland!

Room hire

Other organisations can also hire some rooms and office spaces on a temporary basis- whether it’s to hold a meeting or to work on a project. Alongside this, people can also hire the following accessories:

  • Flip chart
  • Projector
  • Hot water boilers

People can also pre-order food/refreshments from the café downstairs.

Rooms can be booked over the phone or by contacting their email address.

Café

The café/tea room is located downstairs in the centre, set within the converted Wesleyan Chapel. As you pass through the reception area and through a set of double doors you immediately walk into the main café room with the counter to your right.

The menu is very extensive and includes meals varying from light bites to substantial dinners. They service jacket potatoes, toasties, sandwiches, salads and wraps, as well as chips, pies and quiches. Every day they put on a special meal which can be mince and dumplings or steak pie and chips and veg.

They also have a selection of homemade cakes and a fridge stocked with pop and water. Other snacks include crisps and chocolate bars, and other drinks include different coffees (lattes, cappuccinos etc,), tea and hot chocolate.

It is important to note that the café does NOT take card payments. There is a spacious indoor seating area with tables for up to four people and all food and drink can be bought to the tables. Drinks and food can also be bought to take away- either outside or to one of the office rooms/spaces elsewhere in the centre.

Projects

The community hub also operates a venue for many regular ongoing clubs and projects. The following projects are ran under the Bishop Auckland Community Partnership (BACP) which include:

All of the above projects are funded and ran by non-profit organisations of volunteers and part-time staff.

The main project of course is the Four Clocks Centre itself, where they facilitate meeting rooms for previously mentioned organisations and signposting (i.e. Citizens Advice).

Click on each other above listed projects to learn more about them.

Accessibility

Despite this centre being in a very old church building, it is really accessible to people with physical disabilities as it has undergone an amazing conversion.

Wheelchair access

The main entrance has very wide automatic doors with no steps at all. This can be accessed directly from the high street pavement of Newgate Street. Inside the centre, the main reception area has a reasonable height desk and double doors leading to the main café room. The seating area at the café can easily be accessed down a sloped walkway, the counter area where people queue is little bit tight for wheelchairs and can get busy at lunch times.

There is a lift for access to all the rooms on the upstairs floors.

Toilet facilities

There are toilets throughout the building including a disabled toilet upstairs where the Citizens Advice desk and downstairs at the end of the sloped walkway alongside the ladies and gents toilets. They also have baby changing facilities.

Café menu

The café has a very diverse menu that caters to people of all dietary requirements including vegan/vegetarian options and gluten-free options too. You can obtain allergy information by asking the staff. They also serve food that includes healthy options like salads and jacket potatoes.

For babies, they provide high chairs which you can ask for at the counter.

Parking

This community hub is located right next to Morrisons car park. The parking restrictions are maximum stay of 3 hours and you CANNOT return within 30 minutes of leaving the car park. There are plenty of disabled spaces in the car park and other places to park along Newgate Street for disabled people.

Public transport

The bus stop on Newgate Street is a minute’s walk from the entrance. You can catch a bus here from Durham, Newton Aycliffe and Barnard Castle. There is also the Bishop Auckland train station nearby, about a five-minute walk from The Four Clocks. You can catch a train directly from Darlington.

Conclusion

If you thought this listing was really helpful, then we also recommend checking out this other centre- The COSE– that is also in Bishop Auckland. For nearby places to eat in Bishop Auckland, why not try Fox’s Tale or Stanley Jefferson (Wetherspoons)?

Q Is the cafe open during all opening hours?

The café is only open between 9am-3pm Monday to Friday. Last orders are at 2.30pm before they close.

Q Do I need to book in advance to join a club or can I just turn up?

It would be better to contact the reception by telephone or email to inquire about joining any clubs

Q Can any organisation hire office space?

Pretty much any organisation that is non-profit or CIC (community interest) or a charity. Room bookings can be made over the phone or by email.

Q Can I come just to eat at the cafe?

Yes of course, the café is open to the public.

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  • Monday08:00 AM - 08:00 PM
  • Tuesday08:00 AM - 08:00 PM
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  • Thursday08:00 AM - 08:00 PM
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