Following the opening of National Nightline in 1970, three Durham University students who volunteered at Durham Samaritans took the initiative to set up Durham Nightline in 1973. They felt that some students may feel reluctant to approach people outside of the university community and would find it easier and more relatable to speak to another student within the university community. Durham Nightline is a member of the National Association of Nightlines and is accredited for following the organisation’s good practice guidelines.

Since 1973, we have been guided by the same five principles:



The privacy of our callers is of paramount importance, and we treat all calls and messages with the utmost confidentiality and respect.



Calls and messages to Nightline cannot be traced or linked, protecting the anonymity of our callers. With the exception of our four public-facing volunteers, all our listeners are also anonymous.



We’ll listen, not lecture. As active listeners, our volunteers do not give advice - they will explore your situation with you and respect your right to make your own decisions.



Our volunteers recognise the unique set of backgrounds, experiences, actions, views and opinions that each individual has. We will never, for any reason, make judgments about you, exclude you or treat you differently.



We are an independent and autonomous organisation with no religious, cultural, or political affiliations. We respect everyone’s beliefs and thoughts.