Worshipping God, Welcoming Others
Welcoming guests is an important part of the Community’s work. The Rule of St Benedict makes it clear that a monastery will never be without guests, and that they are to be welcomed as Christ (Chapter 53) – though in the 21st century that may be less straightforward than it was in Benedict’s day!
To enable us to make your stay as comfortable as possible, it is useful to bear in mind that although we have a few en-suite rooms, most of our accommodation is in standard rooms with a single bed, washbasin, desk and chair, so you may want to bring a dressing gown for walking along the corridors to and from the bathrooms. To avoid confusion, if you want, or need, an en-suite room for your retreat stay it is essential to book this through the Guest Office, so that we can book your meals. If you book an en-suite room on-line we will assume that you are a commercial B & B guest only.
Each floor of the Retreat House has a kitchenette, which is stocked with tea, coffee, milk and biscuits, so that you can make a hot drink anytime you wish. Throughout your stay, we aim to provide nutritious and tasty food prepared by our own trained staff on site.
It is essential to let the Guest Office know at the time of booking if you have any special dietary requirements. Please email Guests or call 01924 483346.
It is helpful to plan ahead for your stay. Unfortunately, we will generally not be able to accommodate you at very short notice.
If you would like to speak with a member of the Community while you are here, either for spiritual direction or to make your confession, please make this known at the time of booking, so that we can make sure that a brother is available.
It helps if you can arrange your arrival so that it doesn’t clash with meals or with the midday and evening services, as we cannot guarantee that anyone will be available to answer the door at those times. To view the Community timetable please click here.
If you are arriving before lunch, the best time would be 10am – 11am or, for an afternoon arrival, 3pm – 4pm. Similarly, at the end of your stay, we would normally ask if you to vacate your room by 10am, but it may be possible to make alternative arrangements with the Guest Office if you are staying on for lunch.
Paying for your stay. Our booking system will generate an invoice for your individual stay which you will usually be sent before arrival so, if you wish, you may pay in advance by direct bank transfer. If you prefer to pay during your stay that is fine too and you can do this by card, cheque or cash.
The administration of group bookings is different and will require a deposit as part of the process.
Please do not be put off by the cost of a stay at the Community. We want you to come! A standard concession of 20% is available to students and anyone living on a low income. If this isn’t enough you can speak, confidentially, to the staff in the Guest Office or to the Guest Brother to work out a cost you can afford.
You will find details elsewhere on the website about our Safeguarding policy. As part of our concern for Child Protection and the Safeguarding of Vulnerable Adults, children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
While we will do our best to meet the needs of those who want to come for a time of retreat, please be aware that we are not equipped to provide routine nursing care, nor do we have the resources to provide any kind of psychological counselling or therapy.