Cotherstone Parish is situated within Teesdale in the south west of County Durham. The village of Cotherstone is at the eastern edge of the parish, close to the wooded banks of the rivers Tees and Balder. The village lies some three miles upstream of Barnard Castle, a historic local market town, and straddles the B6277 which is the main route through the western side of the dale. The Parish extends to the west to the Cumbrian border to include the south side of Baldersdale (the river being the Parish boundary) and the hamlets of East and West Briscoe, this being predominantly pastoral bordering the expanse of Cotherstone moor.
A large part of the parish falls withing the North Pennines area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB) and is sparsely populated by isolated farmsteads.
The village of Cotherstone, a designated conservation area, with several listed buildings, is a cluster of mainly stone built houses with three village greens that is of linear development along the B6277 (the main road through the village).
The village is well served by a local village shop and Post Office and two excellent public houses, The Red Lion and The Fox and Hounds that offer accommodation, food and a quality selection of beers.
The village is a balanced community of all ages with a thriving local primary school, a church, Methodist Chapel, and a Quaker Meeting House, all of which are in regular use.
The Village Hall and Methodist School rooms provide the focal points for the active social life of the parish. There are numerous clubs and societies, which include the Cotherstone branch of the Teesdale Day Clubs, 50/60s Club, and Dales Friday Club for older residents and a parent and toddler group.
The village has an extensive play park (run by Play@Cotherstone) with various items of play equipment and local football pitch. There is an annual fun weekend featuring a fancy dress parade (with a procession queen) with children’s games, and an annual flower and vegetable show; actively supported by residents and visitors is held in the Village Hall in late August/early September.
With the Parish lying in an AONB and conservation area, there is an active group, Trees for Cotherstone, dedicated to planting trees in field boundaries to actively maintain the attractive landscape for future generations.