Hands connecting in a ring

Ease of Being – LGBTQIA+ Retreat in Sharpham House

Summary

8 Reviews
4 nights - Annually
Any meditation experience
Single
Short periods of silence
Max. Spaces: 20

Overview

This retreat is for people identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, non-binary, genderqueer, intersex, asexual, aromantic or who don’t experience the gender identity or sexual orientation expected in our society.

Because of the heteronormativity, cisnormativity and mononormativity of most spaces in our society, at times we may not be comfortable or safe showing up as our whole selves, inclusive of our sexualities and genders and relationship styles.

This retreat provides the space to bring those parts of ourselves - within the context of a safe and supportive retreat environment.

This retreat is also facilitated with an awareness of trauma & neurodiversity.

Meditation and nature connection can offer powerful ways to connect to ourselves and each other whilst exploring letting go of internalised oppressions.

Whether or not you have been on retreat before, you are welcome to become part of this community of practice. 

Practising together, we can discover new sources of peace and well-being and enjoy the beautiful nature of the Sharpham Estate.

This retreat is for you if you:

  • Identify as LGBTQIA+
  • Are in need of rest, rejuvenation and renewal
  • Are aged 18 or above
What is Mindfulness?

What you'll experience on this retreat:

  • guided meditation and practices to support you in everyday life
  • periods of silence and quiet contemplation
  • a single-occupancy room and your own space in which to rejuvenate, with free time to deeply rest and reconnect with yourself
  • living in community with like-minded people, sharing experiences and the opportunity to bring mindfulness to some everyday household tasks
  • our tranquil Capability Brownian parkland and our Grade II*-listed gardens designed by Percy Cane
  • delicious, healthy, home-cooked vegetarian & vegan food that regularly receives rave reviews
  • full-board accommodation in a Grade I-listed Georgian house surrounded by history and art, with staff looking after you, within a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty on the banks of the River Dart
The Octagonal Room at Sharpham House

What you'll need to know:

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 that we send out after you've booked.

You can also find out more about staying with us on our Frequently Asked Questions page, including

  • accessibility information
  • why we encourage you to come on your own and not with partners or friends
  • what the difference is between our retreats
View our FAQs

Schedule

If you're coming to stay with us on retreat, it is important to make a commitment to arrive in time for the first group meeting and to attend all the days.

This ensures you experience the retreat programme from start to finish and helps your group of participants to gel.


Silence

All our retreats include periods of silence as a way of deepening into mindful awareness.

If you are new to spending time in silence in the company of other people, it can feel awkward to begin with. But we encourage you to explore the silent periods with a spirit of openness and curiosity - people usually find it to be a positive experience. 

The retreats typically move into silence each evening from 9pm - 9.50am the following day

Typical retreat schedule

Day 1: Arrive between 3-5pm for welcoming talk and settling in

Mornings Afternoons
7.00am - wake up  12.30pm - guided sitting meditation
7.30am – mindful movement  1.00pm - lunch
8.00am - guided sitting meditation 2.30pm – Personal time
8.30am – breakfast and tasks 5.20pm - guided sitting meditation
9.50am – home groups 6.00pm – supper and tasks
10.30am - walk of the grounds or personal time 8.00pm - Meditation / Teaching
  9.00pm – House moves into silence until 9.50am the next day

Final day: There is a closing circle at 10.30am and depart at 12 noon. The retreat will move into silence each evening from 9pm – 9.50am, and till 2.30pm on day 3.

Reviews

As it was my first time on a retreat, I wasn't sure what to expect (despite receiving plenty of information beforehand). This nervousness was compounded as a trans person, as I'm never too sure whether I'll be able to be myself in a new environment. The retreat has been one of the most profound and affirming experiences of my life. I say this not just as a trans and queer person, but rather as a person who got to forget about my difference for a week and was made to feel part of the family of all things, people and nature included. The coordinators created a warm, familial and fun space where people felt safe to talk about deep existential things. We laughed, we cried, we sat in silence, we felt connected to each other and nature in ways I will always remember as magical. I am so glad I took the plunge! I leave here forever changed

Ease of Being retreatant

Being with other LGBTQIA+ people was so transformative and healing. I feel I have changed something fundamental about myself as a result

Ease of Being retreatant

What I really liked about the retreat was my ability to connect with and witness the courage of my fellow LGBTQ+ people - a privilege and powerful - in a beautiful and nurturing space. LGBTQ+ people need more spaces like this to heal their traumas

Ease of Being retreatant
See all Reviews

Sharpham House in Spring

Sharpham House

Sharpham House is the perfect place to experience a mindfulness retreat: a Grade I-listed Georgian mansion at the centre of the stunning Sharpham Estate, where you're nurtured with delicious vegetarian and vegan food (much of it grown organically in our Walled Garden).

The House is set in beautiful gardens, surrounded by a parkland designed originally by Capability Brown, offering calming views over the River Dart, in a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Get Directions View Venue

Leaders

Armel
Armel Wraight Read more +
Lindsay 2
Lindsay Alderton Read more +

Costs

£495 Standard room, single occupancy, full-board
£555 Premium room, single occupancy, full-board
£655 Heritage room, single occupancy, full-board

(see also room types below)


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

All rooms are single occupancy, giving you your own space in which to relax.

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

Book easily and securely online or by phoning 01803 732542

Terms & Conditions

Please click here to see our booking and cancellations policy

Room Types

Click here for more information on our types of bedrooms and facilities.

Bursaries

Limited 50% bursaries offering reduced-price retreats are available for those experiencing financial hardship. Please contact the Programme Administrator at least 4 weeks in advance if you wish to apply.

Our bursary fund relies on donations. If you’d like to help another to go on retreat here through our bursary scheme, you can give online quickly and easily by clicking here

Available dates

2025 19 Jan

Sharpham House: Ease of Being – LGBTQIA+ Retreat (4 nights)

With Armel Wraight & Lindsay Alderton