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Mindfulness Through Singing: uplifting and soulful

Susan Papas

6 months ago, on Google
The 6-day mindfulness retreat I attended at The Coach House on the Sharpham Estate in Devon, England, was an oasis of peacefulness, meditation, rural beauty, and - far more than I had expected - connection with a group of strangers (including two wonderful coordinators) who quickly became mindful companions. An unforgettable experience in gorgeous surroundings. 🧘‍♀️🌳🌼

Billie

6 months ago, on Google
Have just returned from the mindfulness for beginners retreat at Sharpham House and what a magical, transformative experience it was! The house and the grounds are truly breath-taking, the natural beauty of the place is a big aspect of what you take away with you; a deeper connection with nature. The facilitators Steven and Lynette were both holding, humorous and skilled mindfulness leaders. Wonderful to learn from and be around. I felt taken care of on this retreat in many ways which I realised was something I deeply needed. The food is delicious and nourishing and the walled garden of veggies was one of my favourite places to spend time. The retreat strikes a good balance between discipline/structured practice with extended periods of silence and time to yourself. In my downtime I enjoyed chatting with others on the retreat, spending time alone reading, swimming in the pool or colouring, just sitting in the gardens. I left the retreat rested, calm and inspired. For anyone feeling a little frazzled by life and in need of slowing down for a reset, this is a good retreat for you. I will be back!

Louise Neicho (lou lou)

4 months ago, on Google
THE most magical and amazing place for a retreat. I cannot recommend Sharpham highly enough, I'm telling all my friends! The food is divine, the location is breathtaking and the facilitators are highly skilled. I'm creating space in my diary for the next one very soon!

Scotia Spice

8 months ago, on Google
I had a truly wonderful experience at Sharpham on the 5 day silent retreat. It was a deep delve into stillness and meditation, which was life affirming and nourishing. Sharpham looked after us in every detail, from the kind supportive knowledgeable retreat leaders to the truly delicious food and calm and beautiful atmosphere of the house. And of course the surroundings themselves take centre stage, beautiful gardens, stunning countryside and breath-taking views. Thank you to every one of you who made my stay so special.

Tessa Turner

4 months ago, on Google
A wonderfully run property, very very beautiful, with various venues for meditation, to suit all tastes (and pockets?). I've been on two different retreats and although I really loved my time there, I don't feel the need to rush back but I may feel differently in a couple of years' time. It's all about "the group" you share your time with while there and it felt very middle class and not at all representative of "real life" here in the UK. This probably would not worry most people and I would very much recommend Sharpham to anyone looking for a retreat giving them meditation, peace and beauty.

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Find harmony on this soul-enhancing retreat that blends meditation and singing.

 

Things are such that someone lifting a cup or watching the rain, petting a dog or singing, just singing, could be doing as much for this universe as anyone
                              - Rumi

 

male and female retreatants sing in Sharpham House's stairwell

Singing can be uplifting, soulful and life-enriching. And like mindfulness, singing can bring us into direct contact with our moment-to-moment experience.

You’ll be group singing, learning songs by ear (so you don’t need to read music) and experiencing the incredible acoustics of Sharpham House’s central oval stairwell. No previous experience of singing is required.

Our experienced leaders will help you explore the unique practice of mindful singing as a way of fostering moment-by-moment awareness.

 

 Mindful practice and joyful singing was uplifting, engrossing and restorative in the extreme...mindfulness and singing are a great combination.

                                 Review of our Mindfulness Through Singing retreat, Kindred Spirit magazine - click here to see the whole feature

 

Read on for more details on this retreat and click the Leaders, Schedules and Venue & Directions tabs above for further information.

 


A communal and heart-warming retreat


You’ll be learning and singing songs from a rich variety of traditions and genres – from gospel, pop and folk to more devotional chants and songs.

You’ll experience singing in harmony as a meditation, whilst exploring your own voice and self-expression.

Singing retreats at Sharpham


This retreat is for you if you:

Singing retreats at Sharpham

  • Want to experience singing as a resource for well-being
  • Begin or further develop your mindfulness practice, using breath, sound and song to explore mind, body & spirit
  • Are aged 18 and above

There will be a maximum of 20 participants on this retreat.

Like our other retreats, there will be three 30-minute guided meditation sessions a day.

There are periods of silence on each of our retreats and plenty of free personal time for you to settle into your rejuvenation in Sharpham House.



What you’ll experience on this retreat


During this retreat you’ll:Singing retreats at Sharpham

  • experience guided meditation and periods of silence and quiet contemplation
  • live in community with like-minded people, sharing experiences and some simple everyday tasks, including the washing-up
  • be able to explore our tranquil Capability Brownian parkland and our Grade 2*-listed gardens designed by Percy Cane
  • have a single-occupancy room and your own space in which to rejuvenate, with free time to deeply rest and reconnect with yourself, far from the busy-ness of daily life. Click here to explore our rooms.
  • enjoy delicious, healthy, home-cooked vegetarian food that regularly receives rave reviews and have access to 24-hour hot teas, coffee & infusions in our Toasting Room
  • be cared for full-board in a Grade I-listed Georgian House surrounded by history and art, with staff looking after you, in a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty close to nature, amid breath-taking scenery on the banks of the River Dart


See our Sharpham House Covid-19 measures here

 

Mindfulness in nature at Sharpham


When you experience Sharpham's inspiring and nourishing environment, we hope you'll connect spiritually with the natural world, so you’ll:

  • become aware of how we are all part of nature - not artificially separate from it
  • pay attention to and appreciate the natural world surrounding us
  • explore nature through your senses and your natural creativity
  • Tread more lightly on our finite planet, developing a respect and reverence for all living things

Click here to read our ethos and principles

spring view of Sharpham House from the orchard

What might you bring?


If you decide to stay with us, we’ll send you a list of what you need to bring for this retreat in your Welcome Letter. But you might consider the following:

  • Comfy clothes for meditation, movement and relaxation
  • Slippers (we supply some, but you might prefer your own)
  • A journal or notepad if you want to write or draw during your time here
  • Swimming gear – we have a small pool that’s open in summer. Click here to read more
  • Walking boots – we have wonderful footpaths and routes to explore
  • Running gear if you’re a jogger. Some participants love to run on the lanes and footpaths near Sharpham

Find out more about staying in Sharpham House on our Frequently Asked Questions page.

vegetarian and vegan retreats at Sharpham

Our food & your dietary needs


The retreat is full-board with delicious home-cooked vegetarian food. 

In line with sustainable practices across the Estate, our cooks produce seasonal, vegetarian food for our guests. We source food whenever possible from our kitchen garden and support local food suppliers. The Estate's farm tenants produce award-winning wine and cheese as well as organic eggs, meat and vegetables.

Food allergies & intolerances
Please tell us well in advance of your stay of any food allergies or intolerances you may have.

You can tell us this on the Booking Form via a link we send you in your confirmation email.



Your physical and mental health


This retreat is suitable for you if you are new to mindfulness, or seeking to renew or reconnect with your practice.

Although meditation and mindfulness can be helpful in managing stress, depression and anxiety, our retreats might not be suitable if you are experiencing major depression or other psychiatric illness such as bipolar disorder, psychosis or current self-harming. Click here for more information and for our booking process

We have an accessible en-suite bedroom The Clare Milne Room – click here for details on how to book this room

If you have a medical condition that requires you to have an en-suite room, please contact our Programme Administrator on the number below as these rooms are limited and are bookable on a first-come first-served basis.

 

I really enjoyed the combination of singing and meditation. It was wonderful to be able to sing in such an amazing location - particularly in the stairwell!

A retreatant spends time under the yew tree on Sharpham House's South Lawn

Arrive on the first day between 4.00pm and 5.00pm

Typical daily programme
7.30am Mindfulness meditation
8.00am Breakfast
9.00am Group meeting
10.30am-12.00pm Stretch, breathe, sing
12.30pm-1.00pm Walking or sitting meditation
1.00pm Lunch
2.00pm-4.00pm Optional guided walk or free time
4.00pm-5.30pm Singing session
6.00pm        Supper
8.15pm Meditation
9.00pm House goes into silence until 8.30am the following day

Final day - closing circle with departure afterwards by 12noon

It was utterly joyful as waves of sound washed over me and reverberated through me. And it soon dawned on me that singing is mindfulness personified. I was totally in the moment, absorbed in something I loved - the perfect mindful practice. As our voices mingled and swelled, rising to a crescendo in the wonderful acoustics of the domed atrium of Sharpham, it became highly emotional.

Our routine of mindful practice and joyful singing was uplifting, engrossing and restorative in the extreme...mindfulness and singing are a great combination.

Review of our Mindfulness Through Singing retreat in UK/international magazine Kindred Spirit. Read the whole piece here and click here to see more reviews of Sharpham retreats.


 

I have benefited from being here hugely! it has provided contemplation and peace and inspiration from both teachers and the confidence to sing my heart out.
 

[What I really liked about the retreat was]...the excellent care and thoughtfulness by all staff...the warmth of everyone I met...the fact I felt I CAN sing (wish I had discovered this a couple of years ago!!). Thank you from my heart.
 

The combination of mindfulness and singing worked really well...we all said how the place was wonderful, the nature, the building, the delicious food, the friendly atmosphere amongst the staff and all us participants
 

The Sharpham experience was special in many ways - the place, the people and the event itself. I will come away more positive, invigorated and uplifted
 

I feel as though I have rediscovered some parts of myself that I had almost lost sight of.

 

This retreat takes place in the beautiful and historic Grade I-listed Sharpham House set in a Capability Brown-designed landscape with stunning views over the steeply-wooded River Dart.

Click here for our How to Find Us page on this website.

Click here to view, print or download directions and a map to Sharpham House

Click here view and download walking/cycling directions to Sharpham House

Aerial shot of Sharpham House

If you have a medical condition that requires you to have an en-suite room, please contact our Programme Administrator on the number below as these rooms are limited and are bookable on a first-come first-served basis.


Just to let you know, we have poor mobile phone coverage – which we see as a virtue. While there is wi-fi in Sharpham House, we encourage you to disconnect from ‘the network’ so you can fully retreat when you’re here.


We are 3 miles from Totnes – famous for its Transition Town movement

We are in a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty


Sustainability

We take sustainability seriously.

All of the hot water and heating in the House is produced by a state-of-the-art biomass woodchip boiler and we have 2 large photo-voltaic solar panel arrays on barn rooftops.

Eco-gardens at Sharpham

Our gardens are managed organically and we only use bio-degradable cleaning products.

£460 - Standard room

£495 - Premium room

£595 - Heritage room

 

 

Emily Roblyn

Emily Roblyn

Emily is an experienced voice teacher and performer. She has been running community choirs for over 10 years and belongs to the Natural Voice Practitioners Network. She has been exploring "embodied presence" and mindfulness through the 'Movement of Being' work in Devon for the last 5 years, and has used singing as a meditation throughout her life. She is passionate about sharing her love of music and its potential for supporting connection to ourselves and each other.


Barry Thurgood

Barry Thurgood

For over 10 years, Barry has been guiding meditation groups and coordinating retreats at Lam Rim Buddhist Centre in Bristol, The Sharpham Barn Retreat and also online. He has also worked as the Sharpham Woodland Camp Retreat Manager and is a qualified Integrating Mindfulness & Compassion (CPCAB accredited) teacher.

Barry is inspired by sharing his passion for deepening a sense of connection with ourselves, each other, nature and something bigger than ourselves, all in a spirit of kindness.


Retreats & Events

How to book easily and securely:

  • online on this page
  • by phoning 01803 732542

Ring us or email us on [email protected] if you've got any questions.

Please click here to see our booking and cancellations policy.


Do check our Calendar to see and book for our events - or join our mailing list by clicking here to be kept in touch about Sharpham Trust news, retreats & events.