South West Durham Training (SWDT) is committed to providing high-quality customer service. If, however you are dissatisfied with any aspect of our service please let us know. If you are a student, you should discuss this first with your tutor or an appropriate member of staff. If you do not wish to do this, or you are still not satisfied you can make a formal complaint. We value complaints and use the information from them to help us improve our services.

Who can complain?

Anyone who is dissatisfied with our service can make a complaint to South West Durham Training. We understand that you may be unable, or reluctant, to make a complaint yourself. We accept complaints from a friend, relative or advocate, if you have given them your consent to complain on your behalf.

How do I complain?

You can complain in person, by phone, in writing, by email:
Contact information:
Address: Quality Improvement Office, Bishop Auckland College, Woodhouse Lane, Bishop Auckland, DL14 6JZ
Phone: 01388 443100

When complaining make sure you tell us:

  • Your full name and address, also an email address if you have one
  • As much as you can about the complaint as possible, including dates and times etc.
  • What has gone wrong
  • The outcome you are seeking

What happens when you complain?

South West Durham Training are part of the Bishop Auckland College Group. When you complain the administration of your complaint will be dealt with by the Quality department at Bishop Auckland College. We will always tell you who is dealing with your complaint. An overview of the complaints process is laid out below and a copy of the Customer Complaints Procedure is available from the Quality Improvement Office, please see contact information above.

What if I am still dissatisfied?

After we have fully investigated, if you are still dissatisfied with our decision or the way we dealt with your complaint you can complain to:

  • For complains relating to courses funded by the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) you can contact the ESFA using the contact details below:

ESFA complaints team –

Or via:

The Complaints Team Education and Skills Funding Agency Cheylesmore House Quinton Road Coventry CV1 2WT

For further information about making a complaint to the ESFA, please refer to their website

Please note: Education Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) was formed on the 1 April 2017 and brings together the work of Skills Funding Agency (SFA) and Education Funding Agency (EFA)

  • For complaints relating to HNC/HND courses solely ran through SWDT – you can complain to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA). You must do this within 12 months of receiving the Completion of Procedures (COP) letter, issued by SWDT.

You can fill in the OIA’s complaint form online or download a copy from the OIA website: