TERMS AND CONDITIONS FOR GUESTS AND VISITORS
& COURSE PARTICIPANTS
- The Carmelite Priory is home to a small community of Discalced Carmelite friars who live their lives in allegiance to Jesus Christ, focusing on prayer, spiritual guidance and retreat ministry, based mostly on Carmelite spirituality and its ancient tradition of prayer. Our home is set in seventeen acres of woodland and surrounded by the beautiful hills of Oxfordshire. It is an oasis of peace, stillness and prayer. Its peaceful and green spaces offer an ideal place for quiet prayer and meditation, and we are also available for private groups and individuals on private retreats.
The Centre for Applied Carmelite Spirituality (CACS) is an institute founded by the Discalced Carmelite friars of the Anglo-Irish Province, and is situated in the premises of the Carmelite Priory at Boars Hill, Oxford. Drawing from the Carmelite ancient tradition of prayer, the Centre aims to promote the richness of Carmelite teachings within the broad perspective of Christian spirituality to a diverse range of audiences through a range of taught courses. These are currently delivered through the Priory’s retreat programmes and the spiritual formation courses run by CACS. In this way, we provide the space and resources for people to experience the light, love and life that are the free gift of God.
Our values inform the choices we make, what we do and the way we do it. Our values are:
Christ-centred community life; Friendship; Prayer; Silence
The core of our Carmelite spirituality is a journey of the heart. Therefore, we respect each person’s sacred journey along the path to wholeness and meaning of life. And, while our lives are centred on Jesus Christ and his Church, we never impose our faith or belief on others.
In collaboration with a team of Secular Carmelites, the Discalced Carmelite friars run the Carmelite Retreat Centre and the Centre for Applied Carmelite Spirituality (CACS) where we welcome all who desire to seek their own way to wholeness and the meaning of life.
- Personal Wellbeing: Programme participants are responsible for maintaining their own wellbeing and should inform their programme leaders and relevant Priory staff of any health issues that arise during their stay. Programme participants should inform the Priory, before booking, of any pre-existing medical conditions which might affect their ability to:
a. participate in the activities which take place on the premises of the Priory (Priory/CACS/Retreat Centre).
b. stay at the Retreat Centre.
All guests and participants will need to ensure that they bring with them, and continue to
take, an adequate supply of any prescribed medication.
- Visa Requirements: It is the responsibility of each person visiting the Priory to ensure that they have the appropriate documents and paperwork to allow entry into the UK. The usual visa for Carmelite Priory guests to apply for is the UK Standard Visitor visa – visit: https://www.gov.uk/standard-visitor-visa/overview for more information. Under UK law it is necessary for the Carmelite Priory to check the guests’ entitlement to stay at the Priory.
c. Retreat Centre – Suggested Offering: The suggested offering varies according to the retreat or programme/course on offer. Unless specifically stated otherwise on our websites or information leaflets, our quoted prices for weekend retreats and/or courses are fully inclusive of participation in the retreat or course, accommodation in our guest rooms (including towels and linen), all meals and refreshments, and full access to our Retreat Centre’s facilities.
Before you book your place, please take a moment to consider that the Carmelite Priory is a Charitable Trust. We believe that the benefits of Carmelite spirituality should be available to everyone regardless of their financial or life situation, and that the transformational journey is enriched by a diversity of participants.
We recognise that what is affordable for some can be a financial stretch for others and so we propose a suggested offering. Giving a little more would help to cover the cost of your retreat/course, which is currently being subsidised by the Priory and would also include a contribution to our bursary fund to help make participation possible for people with minor financial need who otherwise would not be able to join our transformational work in the world, as well as, enable us to sustain our learning and guest facilities. Thank you.
For anyone who may still struggle to make the full suggested offering for our programmes, we may be able to help. Please contact the Retreat Director at email@example.com
d. CACS Fees: Quoted prices are for tuition, meals and refreshments, and full access to the Carmelite Priory facilities, e.g., our quiet rooms, chapel and library during course days. For tiered pricing please refer to Courses & Programmes or the CACS webpages of the Carmelite Priory Website.
e. Carmelite Retreat Centre: We prefer payment by card or cheque. We accept most credit or debit cards. Please do not send cash in the mail. If you have contacted us and arranged to pay by cheque, these should be made payable to Carmelite Priory.
Payment should be in pounds sterling (GBP – £). It is also possible to pay using a bank transfer. If you have contacted us and arranged to pay by BACS, please make payment using your booking reference number and the following details as needed:
Name of Bank: Barclays
Account Name: Carmelite Priory
Sort Code: 20-65-18
Account number: 80251216
IBAN: GB94BUKB 20651880251216
Please send email confirmation to our office at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can trace your payment.
We also accept electronic payments via our website with a debit card and PayPal.
Unless specifically stated otherwise on the programme page, a non-refundable deposit of 20% of the total cost of the programme is required. This deposit is not refunded unless your programme is cancelled by us (see point 6 below). The balance of the payment must be paid at least 28 days before the start date of the retreat or programme. You can pay by card over the telephone or send us a cheque or bank transfer.
For bookings made within 28 days of the programme start date, the full payment becomes due immediately. Wait for confirmation before making travel arrangements as we cannot guarantee bookings for any given week. Please allow 1–2 weeks for confirmation, although we will endeavour to contact you well before this.
Group bookings: The deposit and the final payment for all group bookings should be made by the group organiser. A non-refundable deposit of 20% of the total estimated cost of the reservation or, if agreed, a deposit of £100 is required. This deposit is not refunded unless your reservation is cancelled by us (see point 6 below). The balance of the payment must be paid at least 28 days before the date of your reservation. For methods of payment and special arrangements, please contact the Retreat Administrator email@example.com.
For bookings made within 28 days of the programme start date, the full payment becomes due immediately.
Day visitors are asked to pay in full at the time of booking.
f. CACS: The course fee should be made in full at the start of the course or, if agreed, may be paid by instalments. The method of payment and your personal payment schedule are to be found in the Payment Advice Document prepared on the terms of agreement for payment.
- Payment by cardor cheque is preferred. We accept most credit or debit cards. Please do not send cash in the post. If you have contacted us and arranged to pay by cheque, it should be made payable to Carmelite Priory (CACS).
- Payment should be in pounds sterling (GBP – £). It is also possible to pay using a bank transfer. If you have contacted us and arranged to pay by BACS, please make payment using your booking reference number and the following details as needed:
Name of Bank: Barclays
Account Name: Carmelite Priory (CACS)
Sort Code: 20-65-18
Account number: 53108856
Swift Code: BUKBG22
IBAN: GB84 BUKB 20651853108856
Please send email confirmation to our office at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can trace your payment.
a. If you have to cancel your booking:
- If you cancel more than 28 days before the programme start date, we will refund the amount you have paid less the deposit as the deposit is non-refundable. If you have paid only the deposit, we are unable to offer any refund.
- If you cancel within 28 days of the programme start date, we will refund 50% of your payment after deducting the deposit as the deposit is non-refundable.
- If you cancel within 7 days of the programme, we are unable to refund any of your payment. In the case of exceptional circumstances, please contact the Retreat Administrator (email@example.com).
- If you cancel after the programme has commenced, we are unable to refund any of your payment.
- On any refund made to a credit/debit card there is a fee of £5.
b. If we have to cancel one of our Programmes:
- Sometimes we have to cancel our Programmes due to unforeseen circumstances. We will notify you of any changes as soon as they come to our attention.
- Hopefully you would find another retreat/programme running at the same time that you would like to attend. We would then apportion your payment to the new programme.
- If you would prefer a refund, we will refund the full amount that you paid, including the deposit.
c. (For External Groups) If we have to cancel your programme:
- In all cases, the Carmelite Priory reserves the right to cancel a booking that has been reserved or booked. This is extremely unlikely, but should this event occur, we will notify you as soon as this happens and will make every effort to transfer your booking to a date suitable to you. If this is not possible, you will be fully refunded.
Should any course participant need to cancel or defer, please contact the Programmes
- Accommodation and Meals: Our accommodation is simple, and rooms are either single or twin (also available for single occupancy). There are shared bathroom, shower and toilet facilities divided between male and female use. Rooms are on either the ground floor or the first floor, so it is important to consider the use of stairs. Towels and bed linen are provided. You are required to notify the Retreat Centre of any special needs at the time of reservation.
No refunds or reductions are made for accommodation and meals paid for and not taken.
We are happy to provide vegetarian food. Vegan, wheat-free, sugar-free, as well as gluten-free and dairy-free alternatives can be requested. If you require a diet that is more specialised, we cannot guarantee to fulfil your needs. We may not be able to cater for people with serious food allergies or multiple food intolerances. Please contact the Retreat Centre Administrator for any queries relating to food allergies.
- Arrivals and Departures: Most retreats and residential stays begin in the evening with arrivals from 4:00 to 6:00 pm and end at 9:00 am after breakfast. See below for times of vacating one’s room. Weekend retreats begin with a meal at 6:30 pm on Friday evening and end on Sunday after lunch.
Your room will be available from 4:00 pm on the day of your arrival. If you need to arrive earlier, please contact us to see if this can be arranged. Guests are requested to vacate their rooms by 10:00 am on the day of departure, even if you are departing in the afternoon. If you require the use of your room beyond 10:00 am on the day of departure, please speak to the Retreat Office. You will have access to other public areas in the Centre during that period.
The Retreat Centre has wheelchair access and one room with disabled toilet / shower facilities. You are invited to bring soft-soled / non-slip shoes. You may also wish to bring walking shoes if you decide to avail of the Oxfordshire Countryside; there are three footpaths to follow in the surrounding area. A map will be provided upon request.
- Private Retreats: We are pleased to accept people for private, silent retreats (not guided) if they have previously attended a programmed event at the Carmelite Priory. This is subject to a room being available.
- Group Bookings: For groups wishing to stay at the Centre, we are able to offer exclusive or inclusive use of the Retreat Centre to incorporate the conference facilities in the Annexe and Pyramid buildings: the meeting rooms, dining area and accommodation. You will be able to enjoy the beauty of the countryside and the quiet and solitude of the Carmelite Priory. For further information, including details of our group rates, please contact: The Administrator at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Photography and Video Release: The Carmelite Priory or its agents may video or photograph retreats, conferences and events, which will include its speakers and participants, some of which will be used for promotional or informational purposes in our brochures, websites and newsletters. We will always endeavour to inform you of any photography beforehand but by participating in an event you agree that the Priory or its agents may take photographs that include your image and agree to the Priory’s usage of your image for promotional or informational purposes without compensation of any kind. If you do not wish to agree to Photography and Video Release, you must request this by email to: email@example.com and we will ensure that your image does not appear on our websites or marketing material.
- Damage and Liability: All information included in any of our publicity is correct at the time of going to press and is subject to change. Whilst every effort is made to provide the retreats, courses and services as advertised, we do not accept liability for:
- Cancellations or changes caused by unavailability of presenters, staff, low bookings, weather conditions, maintenance work, acts of God, acts of Government or any other authorities, or any situations beyond our control or subsequent to participation in one of our programmes.
- Participants’ medical or psychiatric conditions which may exist, or which may arise during or subsequent to participation in one of our programmes.
- Loss of, or damage to, personal property of our guests and visitors.
Guests and visitors will be liable for the cost of repair or replacement for any damage caused to the buildings, grounds or property of the Priory for which they are personally responsible.
We reserve the right to ask any visitor to leave if their behaviour is disruptive to the function of the Priory and community or interferes with the rights of others.
- Pets: Guide dogs, hearing dogs and assistance dogs are the only pets allowed.
- Smoking and open fires/naked flames: In accordance with legislation, no smoking is permitted in any of our buildings. There should be no fires in rooms (including incense and candles).
18th April, 2019rvp