WOODBROOKE Quaker Study Centre, in Birmingham, encourages a
programme of sustainability which is rooted in Quaker values of
simplicity and care of the earth. A culture of energy efficiency,
recycling, and supporting overseas projects that help to sustain
communities is encouraged.
The centre has a community-based staff and volunteer team, and
the core of its work is through education.
Holland House, in Worcestershire, describes itself as a retreat
centre "in harmony with creation", which includes the use of fresh,
local organic products in the kitchen, and ensuring that the
centre's land is a protected environment.
The Sheldon Community, in Devon, has a holistic approach to the
environment and the 45 acres of land that it occupies. A commitment
to sustainability includes buildings designed to run on efficient
energy sources, such as solar hot water, underfloor heating, and
low-energy light bulbs. Guests can enjoy woodland and field walks,
sustained partly through the help of volunteers.
Ffald-y-Brenin Christian Retreat Centre, in Pembrokeshire, has
won many awards for its contribution to ecology, including planting
a wood and maintaining a wildflower meadow. Hilfield Friary, in
Dorset, also has an ancient wildflower meadow, and an organic
Hacienda Los Olivos, in Andalucia, is a carbon-neutral centre,
generating all its heating and power from renewable energy sources.
Central to its vision is a clear commitment to green issues which
combines careful environmental management with minimal ecological
IF YOU are looking for a retreat focusing on green issues this
year, Ringsfield Hall, in Suffolk, is planning a "Green Christian
Gathering", 29-31 May; Minsteracres Retreat Centre, Co. Durham, is
organising a "Big Green Sunday" on 31 August; Wistaston Hall,
Cheshire, is holding an Ecology Retreat, 9-11 October. Other
centres offering regular "green" events include the Rosmini Centre,
Leicestershire; the Fellowship of St Ethelwold, Oxfordshire; and
Elsie Briggs House of Prayer, Bristol.
Alison MacTier is executive director of the Retreat
Association. For more information on any of these centres, contact
the Retreat Association: phone 01494 569056; email
email@example.com; or visit the website