Low Barns Visitor Centre

Front of Low Barns visitor centre

Low Barns visitor centre. (c) Laura Beasley


As you arrive at Low Barns Nature Reserve you are greeted by a series of old farm buildings, over the 50+ years of Durham Wildlife Trust’s management of the site, these old barns have been converted and adapted to become Low Barns Visitor Centre. Also home to the Trust’s Southern Living Landscapes team, the visitor centre houses a coffee shop, providing visitors with a welcome cup of tea or coffee, cake or some hot food while our team of ambassadors can give information about the reserve’s wildlife. Visitors to the centre can also browse our range of shop items, from a full selection of wild bird foods to volunteer made hedgehog homes, Low Barns is a unique shopping experience. Logs and charcoal produced sustainably by the Trust on-site are also available and are a by-product of our conservation work at Low Barns and neighbouring reserves.

Covid-19 Update

See the latest update with details of opening hours here.


Planning your visit

The Nature Reserve is open 7 days a week, including bank holidays. Christmas opening hours are published in December.*

Low Barns Nature Reserve
Bishop Auckland
Co. Durham
DL14 0AG

0191 584 3112
Access: 9.30 am – 4.30 pm
Coffee Shop: 10.00 am – 4.00 pm *check our latest covid-19 update

We’re dog friendly! Well behaved humans & dogs are welcome inside our Visitor Centre and Coffee Shop.

Access to Low Barns Nature Reserve and Visitor Centre is free but non-members are asked to make a donation for car parking. Visitors are welcome to make use of our mobility scooter. To book the mobility scooter please call us on 0191 584 3112. 

For details about hiring Low Barns Visitor Centre for your event, please email bookings@durhamwt.co.uk

The Low Barns Visitor Centre underwent improvement works in 2019, thanks to funding from North Pennine Dales LEADER and the Weardale Area Action Partnership. It now has a new pedestrianised outdoor seating area, an improved shop area and a large community space that can be used for education, meetings and events. There is more work to do to improve the observation tower and open up views across Marston Lake from the visitor centre. As such, our fundraising continues and if you wish to donate to help fund the work, please visit www.durhamwt.com/low-barns-appeal/

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