Seeing a stranger approach,
I would put food in the eating place,
drink in the drinking place,
music in the listening place,
and look with joy for the blessing of God,
who often comes to my home
in the blessing of a stranger.
The Nether Springs is the 'Mother House' of the Northumbria Community, situated just outside of Felton, Northumberland. The facility consists of converted farm buildings, four-sides around a courtyard, not unlike a traditional medieval monastery. The rooms are spacious and comfortable. We have nine ensuite rooms that can be set with twin beds or a super-king, and one larger ensuite room that is designated as a family room. The house is wheelchair user-friendly and one of the ensuite bedrooms is wheel-chair accessible. We have space for twenty-two guests to spend the night.
It is home to a small team of resident Community companions, who in the context of seeking God themselves, help keep the home running smoothly and facilitate retreats for guests.
It's possible to come on a 'programmed' retreat, where we focus on a particular theme or to come with just to be and have some quiet space.
Click the 'What's On at Nether Springs' menu item over on the left to find details about the programme of Retreats.
Programme Times and Format
Weekend programmes normally begin at 5.30pm on the Friday with evening prayer and end on Sunday at 2.00pm. For all retreats, it would be helpful if guests aim to arrive between 3.00pm and 5.00pm and leave after 2.00pm on the day of departure, as this fits with the rhythm of the day. Day guests are welcome to join us from 9.00 am onwards. Advance notification is needed if evening meal is required.
Our nearest train station is Alnmouth and we pick-up and drop-off at the beginning and end of each retreat at approximately 3pm. Please let us know before hand if you would like to be collected from the station. We do ask for a £5 each way donation towards the cost of travel.
Beyond the stated programme
Groups: It is often possible to accommodate individuals and groups in addition to or instead of, the stated programme. Block bookings are welcome provided they work with our established daily rhythm. If you are interested in bringing a group, please contact the office, and we can discuss details of your particular group.
Space: People come to the Nether Springs for many different reasons, including making a retreat, giving themselves time to rest and reflect, to seek guidance, or just out of plain curiosity. You are very welcome to spend time here without taking part in the led programme. We do, however, encourage all guests to follow the rhythm of the day. It is also possible to stay from Monday to Sunday, but we do not have guests staying on Sunday nights. Also, to make an 'Individually Guided Retreat' one doesn't have to explore the exact theme (like 'Being Who You Are') during the retreat itself.
(Office Hours are normally 10:00am to 4:00pm Monday to Friday; if you get our answering machine, please leave us a message and we'll call you back.)
As a registered charity, we do not ask for a set fee to cover your stay at Nether Springs, but invite donations to support the work of the Community. This is important to us as we don't want to exclude anyone from staying at Nether Springs on financial grounds. For your guidance, and if you are able, the suggested donation is £45 per guest per day full board. For led retreats, an additional £10 pounds is included in the suggested donations for each day's sessions. We ask that you make as generous a donation as is possible without risking hardship, the generosity of those who can afford more will subsidise those who cannot. As the weekly and monthly costs of running the Nether Springs as the Mother House and administrative centre of the Community are substantial, we would greatly value your integrity and generosity in this regard. British tax payers are invited to use Gift Aid for any donations above the suggestion.
Children aged under 14 are half the suggested donation, under 8 free.
Although children are very welcome where appropriate, parents must at all times take full responsibility for them, especially during times of quiet and retreat.
Please note: The only Wi-Fi Connection available at Nether Springs is through a pay-as-you-go BTOpenzone 'Hotspot' using your own laptop.
We regret that pets belonging to guests are not allowed inside the house, except for guide dogs. Information about kennels near to the Nether Springs is available from the Community Office.
We can cater for food allergies with FreeFrom ready meals (for this we ask for a £10/retreat donation). We do offer a vegetarian alternative, if you would like either of these please contact us before arrival.
We are happy to send on any property you may leave behind (for P+P).
Unclaimed property will be kept for one month.
Things you may find helpful to bring with you are:
• Comfortable walking shoes/boots (especially for pilgrimage)
• Wet weather gear
• Clothing in Layers