Introducing Encircling Love
We have a packed programme for this year's festival, and we hope that you will want to join us.
Following the pattern of recent years there will be opportunities to explore different creative activities in smaller groups as well as time to share experiences together. You will meet old friends and new.
Our keynote guest for the festival is artist and author Mary Fleeson, who runs Lindisfarne Scriptorium. In her distinctive artwork, Mary takes a portion of scripture and builds her art around it, using knot-work and images. She incorporates her surroundings within her art, so you see birds and animals, familiar landmarks on the island, and colours that reflect the time of day and season. There is a spirituality in the flow of her artwork that shows that God is at work in what she produces.
The programme for the weekend
Friday 15 October
Arrive at The Hayes from 4.00 pm onwards to register and settle into your room.
We meet in small groups around tables in the main hall. This will give us an opportunity to get to know each other and share our expectations for the weekend.
We then enjoy our first meal together at 6.45 pm, after which we will begin our explorations of creativity and how it may be used to serve others.
There also be time for worshipping together before repairing to our rooms or to the bar.
Saturday 16 October
We start the day with (optional) morning prayer, followed by breakfast. The rest of the morning will be taken up by two one-hour sessions in which you can choose from a variety of creative activities including Celtic knotwork, singing, circle dance, drama, photography, vocal confidence, and craft.
ArtServe’s AGM will take place immediately after lunch, and we hope that some people who are not able to come to the Festival itself will want to join us. If you want to come to the AGM even though you aren't attending the rest of the festival, we can welcome a few additional people for lunch at a cost of £10.00 – please email . Bear in mind also that you can attend the whole of the Saturday as a day visitor.
After a cup of tea we can choose two further one-hour sessions to enjoy before the evening meal.
To round off the evening, there will be a ceilidh led by Rob Newton's worship band AD2000.
Sunday 17 October
Once again, optional early morning prayer is followed by breakfast. We then divide into small groups to prepare for the closing worship.
After a break for coffee, we will have other creative activities to enjoy.
The climax of the weekend, our closing worship will take place after lunch, and we will be ready to depart by 4.00 pm.
Our leaders for the weekend
Mary grew up in a small market town in Shropshire, and has lived on Holy Island since 1997. She studied Foundation Art at Stafford College, specialising in textiles, and then gained an honours degree in three-dimensional design from the University of Central England in Birmingham in 1992. Mary thinks that her style originates from doodling in lessons at school (not something she recommends as a way of succeeding in exams!), combined with opportunities during her education to experiment with many different types of media and techniques.
Her Christian faith, together with living on the Holy Island of Lindisfarne and being surrounded by its natural beauty and visible history, is the greatest inspiration for Mary’s work – a feeling of being part of a rich cycle of life which began in pre-history and encompasses extremes of peace and violence, poverty and prosperity. She also studies early manuscripts and ancient calligraphy from around the world to gain an insight into how calligraphy and illumination have enhanced works, both religious and secular, throughout the ages.
Ladene is an actor, director and workshop facilitator based in Nottingham. She joined the Central Television Workshop in Nottingham age 10 and has worked professionally in film, theatre and television for over 30 years. TV and film credits include Hardwick House, Palace Hill, Boon, Peak Practice, 24/7, Felicia’s Journey, A Room For Romeo Brass, and This is England.
As a drama tutor, Ladene has facilitated groups for ages 7-70, as well as running a number of creative courses for people with special educational needs, disabilities and learning difficulties.
Ladene’s workshop will be a fun, energetic session designed to increase confidence when performing or speaking in front of audience. It will consist of physical movement and games to release those inhibitions; improvisation exercises and techniques; tips on managing performance anxiety (stage fright); and a Q&A.
The Revd Dr Bonni–Belle Pickard grew up in Florida United Methodism, spent 20 years as a music teacher at Kodaikanal International School in South India, and trained as a minister at Candler School of Theology, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia (USA). She has been a circuit minister in the British Methodist Connexion since 2001, serving in Birmingham, North London, and the Kingston-upon-Thames circuit. Since 2015 she has been superintendent of the North Kent Circuit. She loves people, creativity, and following God into new adventures.
Bonni-Belle will lead a session on Celtic hymnody in which participants will enjoy exploring a wide variety of hymns, some well-known and others just waiting to make their way into our communal repertoire of sung prayer and praise. Bonni-Belle is a trained musician and teacher, who is inspired and energised by Celtic creativity.
The Tree of Life
An opportunity to reflect on our place in God’s wondrous creation, facilitated by Allison Lewis, who says: ‘The first time we encounter the Tree of Life in the Bible is in the book of Genesis, where it grew in the Garden of Eden. In the Celtic church, the Tree of Life represents harmony and balance. In this session we will look at what the Tree of Life has meant to Christians over the centuries, and what it can mean for us today.’
And there’s more!
Further sessions include:
- Celtic music for instrumentalists
- Circle dance with Gillian Pengelly
- Photography with Rachel Gallehawk
- Daisy Barnes will lead a session on the art of mandalas
- Craft with Liz Newton
- Drama facilitated by Jenny Harris.
This year we weIcome ArtServe member the Revd Nel Shallow as festival chaplain. Nel says: ‘I am a Methodist Presbyter with experience in local chaplaincy. I am delighted to be chaplain for the ArtServe Festival and will be present throughout the weekend. During our time together I will be available for prayer and conversation, and I hope to create a prayer space where we can find a quiet corner to be still.’
Encircling Love is at:
Swanwick, Alfreton, DE55 1AU
The Hayes is a well-equipped Christian conference centre set in beautifully maintained gardens and grounds. It offers comfortable modern bedrooms and extensive facilities including a residents lounge, sports facilities, games room, and licensed bar, along with friendly, efficient staff. Free wireless internet is available is available.
The Hayes Conference Centre is only five miles from the M1. The nearest railway station is Alfreton on the Sheffield-Nottingham and Liverpool to Norwich lines.
For full details about The Hayes and its facilities, please visit the The Hayes website.
We will follow all guidance from the government and The Hayes to ensure the smooth running of Encircling Love.
Any vulnerable person choosing to attend does so at their own risk.
In the event of a locally-enforced lockdown preventing any delegate from attending, we will make every effort to provide some online sessions. Any refunds deemed necessary due to the Covid situation will be discussed on an individual basis.
If The Hayes has to close due to further Covid restrictions, we will offer full refunds. We will provide some sessions, including the AGM, via Zoom.
Read CCT's statement about reopening from 1 July 2021 (opens in new tab).
The all-inclusive cost of the weekend, including accommodation for two nights and all meals, is £210 per person for a single room or £190 per person for a shared room.
We would love some younger people to come. Reduced rates are available for young people up to 19 years of age, and there is no charge for children under five.
You can also attend all or part of the weekend on a non-residential basis as a day visitor.
If the festival cannot take place due to re-imposition of Covid restrictions, we will offer full refunds.
* Note: where some members of the group are eligible for discounts and others are not, it will be the one with the largest discount who goes free.
How to book
The easiest way to book is to use the online booking form. Members, please log in first to save entering your personal details. You can book online even if you pay by cheque.
To book by post please download the postal booking form.
Send postal bookings to: ArtServe membership, 51 Blakehall Road, Carshalton, SM5 3EZ.
We require a deposit of £50 per person at the time of booking. The balance is payable by 30 September 2021.
You can pay your deposit by direct transfer, by PayPal (using a debit/credit card or your PayPal account), or by cheque. To pay your deposit by PayPal, please complete the online booking form and then click the PayPal button on the 'thank you' screen.
You can if you wish pay the full amount at the time of booking, but we don't offer PayPal as an option for this.
Although primarily a residential weekend, you can attend on a non-residential basis for the whole weekend or any combination of days.
The cost for Saturday only (including lunch and dinner) is just £65. To attend the whole festival as a day vistor (including dinner on Friday evening) costs £150.
For full details please refer to the booking form.