Play Hard

Inside Darlington’s new 1920s-themed basement cocktail bar, The Vault

The new sophisticated, speakeasy cocktail bar in Darlington, promises to be a live entertainment destination that takes us back to the Roaring Twenties.

Written by Rachael Nichol
Published 19.04.2023

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Think jazz singers, creative cocktails and glamourous velvet furnishings – that’s exactly what you can expect at Darlington’s highly anticipated new bar.

Oozing sophistication, The Vault is now one of the newest go-to bars in Darlington’s nightlife scene. Every corner is filled with curiosities, history and secrets waiting to be uncovered as you venture around this Prohibition-themed bar.

The cavern of historic and industrial splendour with the added 1920s glamour is home in the basement of the iconic Victorian Darlington Market and is a hideaway from the hustle and bustle of the town centre.

The Vault Darlington


As you would expect from a Prohibition-themed bar with a New Orleans-inspired jazz music vibe, a century-old baby grand piano takes centre stage and will be used to host live performances of 1920s-themed entertainment and any passing musicians throughout the year.

Expect to be served, as quoted by officials, ‘a rather seductive cocktail menu’ with a range of both classic and contemporary cocktails, perfect for sipping on The Vault’s outdoor terrace with heaters during these lighter nights.

But if you’re not into cocktails, The Vault has got you covered with an extensive drinks menu that will please any punter. We’re talking a range of wine, whisky, gin, rum, tequila and other spirits.  Plus, there are plenty of delicious small plates and charcuterie available to order – ideal for those last-minute after-work drinks.

The Vault Darlington

And, if you’re more of a beer lover then you’re in luck, The Vault offers a selection of 12 keg beers and four cask ales including a variety of styles, from pilsners and Weissbier to stouts and IPAs sourced from local producers, continental breweries, and a couple of more commercially recognisable products to cater for different tastes.

With exposed brick walls and vibrant art, moody vintage décor with a contemporary twist and traditional handwritten signage crafted by local artist Ste Robson keeping in with the Victorian style of the market, The Vault has really brought a part of the historical market back to life.

Image credit: Scott Akoz Photography
The Vault Darlington


The new bar is the centrepiece of the transformational works at the much-loved Darlington Market and part of a successful blueprint from operators Market Asset Management (Darlington) Ltd in partnership with Darlington Borough Council for the venue to grow as a food, retail and live entertainment destination.

Phase two of the redevelopment, which began in August 2022, also includes revamped shop front fascia and entrances, a new shop floor café, new public and trader toilets on the ground floor and new toilets in the basement.

Stand by for exciting new developments coming to Darlington town centre.

For more information and to stay up to date with upcoming live performances, like The Vault’s Facebook page and follow them on Instagram

The Vault, E Row, Darlington DL1 5PN

Opening times:

Thursday: 3pm – 10pm

Friday: 12pm – 11pm

Saturday:12pm – 11pm

Sunday: 12pm – 8pm

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