Booking Terms & Conditions
In making a booking online, by phone or by post for an Arvon residential course or retreat, you agree to the following terms and conditions:
All bookings must be accompanied by your deposit of £200 (unless you are applying for a grant). You should not consider your booking as definite until we have confirmed it in writing (usually by email). The balance of your fee is payable no later than six weeks before the course or retreat starts. If we do not receive your balance when it’s due, we reserve the right to treat this as a cancellation by you and offer the place to someone else.
Arvon staff: employee hours
Arvon’s staff members are present at the writing centres during their working hours. The times when employees are on site vary according to the day of the week and the type of course taking place. Staff typically arrive on site between 8.30am and 9.30am and leave in the evening between 5.30pm and 10pm on different days of the week (between 10.30am and 12.30pm on Saturdays). No Arvon employees are on site overnight or at the weekends after Saturday morning, and you will not be able to contact Arvon staff members when they are off site. You will be briefed by staff on what to do in the event of an emergency at the beginning of your course or retreat. In the event of an emergency when no staff are present at the centre you should call 999 for the emergency services.
When you make a booking for an Arvon residential course or retreat you explicitly confirm that you have read and understood this section of the Terms and Conditions (“Arvon staff: employee hours”).
We cannot reimburse travel costs or other losses incurred by you in the event of cancellation by us or you. You are strongly advised to take out travel insurance to cover potential loss arising from cancellation or other eventuality affecting your booking, including course fees and travel or other consequential costs. You should check that any policy you purchase meets your needs.
You may cancel your booking and have all fees paid returned to you for the first 14 days after we have confirmed your booking in writing (except where the course or retreat begins within this period, in which case we can only offer a complete refund of fees up until two days before the start of the course or retreat).
Following this initial 14-day period, cancellations of bookings will be accepted up to six weeks before the course or retreat begins and your deposit (or any amount above this level which you have paid) will be returned less a £50 cancellation charge.
If you cancel your booking less than six weeks before the course or retreat begins (but before the first day of the course or retreat), the following cancellation conditions apply:
- If you cancel less than six weeks but more than two weeks before the course/retreat begins, we will retain your £200 deposit and return to you any amount above this level which you have paid.
- If you cancel less than two weeks before the start of the course/retreat, 80% of your full fee will be payable to Arvon and we will return to you any amount above this level which you have paid.
- However, if following your cancellation all available places on the course/retreat are ultimately sold (so that the course/retreat is fully occupied), then after the course/retreat has taken place we will refund to you all fees paid less a £50 cancellation charge.
Please note that if you leave the course or retreat after it has begun or if you fail to attend all or any part of the course (without reasonable cause such as illness, bereavement or family emergency), no refund will be made and we will retain 100% of your fee. Any refunds made in these circumstances due to illness, bereavement, family emergency or similar events will be at the sole discretion of Arvon.
At our discretion, you may be able to transfer your booking to another Arvon course or retreat at the same or another Arvon centre, subject to availability and payment of any difference in the fees due. Where we agree to the transfer and the fee for the new booking is less than the fee for the original booking, we will refund you the difference less an administration charge of £50. We will normally accept transfers up to six weeks before your course or retreat begins, and all of the fee paid will be allocated to the new course or retreat. If we receive a request to transfer a booking after this time, we will do so only if we have already received the full course fee from you. If this condition is not met, we regret we are unable to transfer the booking. Our standard cancellation terms (see above) will apply to the new booking. Please note that we can only transfer a booking to a course or retreat within the same calendar year, and that once a booking is transferred we are unable to offer further transfers. We cannot accept transfers from a residential course or retreat to an online course or tutorial.
Changes to the programme
Arvon reserves the right to make changes to the advertised programme and tutors. As we plan the Arvon programme in advance, changes will inevitably occur to some courses, and occasionally the original tutors are unavailable. We always endeavour to replace tutors with someone of similar experience, and to give you as much notice as possible. On rare occasions we may need to cancel a course; in this case we will offer you an alternative course or return all of the fee paid. Please note that where we have to change tutors, you do not have additional rights of cancellation and our standard terms still apply. We cannot reimburse travel or other costs, which you may however be able to reclaim from your travel insurance policy, and our liability to you in case of a cancellation by Arvon is limited to the course fee you have paid.
Conduct and safety on site
Arvon courses and retreats rely on a supportive environment that depends on tolerance and understanding of all participants and tutors and their creative work. We therefore ask that you are thoughtful and respectful of the other writers and help foster an atmosphere conducive to creativity. Arvon reserves the right to refuse a place and / or to exclude from a course or retreat any writer who, in the judgement of the Centre Director (or, in the absence of the Centre Director, of the responsible member of Arvon staff on site) behaves in an abusive or disruptive manner or engages in any discriminatory conduct. No refund will be given if exclusion is made for these reasons.
Arvon reserves the right to ask a writer to leave the course or retreat if the Centre Director (or, in the absence of the Centre Director, the responsible member of Arvon staff on site) judges that it would not be in the interests of the participant or others in the group, or that it would be otherwise unsafe for that person to remain on site as a result of their mental or physical health, behaviour or apparent state of mind. Any refunds made in these circumstances will be at the sole discretion of Arvon.
Damage and cleaning
Arvon’s buildings and grounds are your home during your stay; please treat them with care and respect. You agree to reimburse us promptly on demand for all reasonable costs incurred by us as a result of any damage caused by you to the centre or excessive cleaning required as a result of your stay.
Please note that with the exception of assistance dogs, pets are not permitted anywhere at Arvon.
Smoking is not permitted anywhere inside Arvon’s buildings, and only in designated smoking areas outside.
A place on a course or retreat may be used only by the participant named in the booking. It may not be transferred to another person without agreement in advance from Arvon. Please note that you are not permitted to have guests or visitors on site during your stay.
Our centre at The Hurst includes two facilities: The Hurst itself, in which Arvon runs residential courses and group retreats, and the Writers’ Retreat at The Clockhouse. During your stay at either facility, we ask that you respect the privacy of writers at the other and do not enter those buildings. Residents at the Writers’ Retreat may visit the office in The Hurst. A Writers’ Retreat booking does not entitle you to participate in our courses, to interact with the tutors or participants, or to attend readings, meals, workshops or other activities taking place within The Hurst. Conversely, a course booking does not permit entry to The Clockhouse or its immediate grounds. However, the wider estate and grounds at The Hurst are shared among all the activities on site and you are welcome to walk and write throughout the gardens and woods.
Arvon’s public courses and retreats are only open to people aged 18 and over. By booking on a course you confirm that the participant named in the booking is aged 18 or over. Find out more about our work with under-18s here or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Privacy and data
Arvon cannot accept responsibility for any loss, damage or expense sustained by participants on courses and retreats as a result of an event or circumstance whether arising from natural cause, human agency, or beyond its control otherwise. Where Arvon is unable to provide a course or retreat place to you for any reason, our liability is limited to return of the fees paid.
Participation and access
Arvon is committed to providing a supportive and welcoming environment to all, while leaving you to work with as few interruptions as possible. During your stay, you will be expected to live and work independently, as if in your own home, including (on most courses and retreats) basic domestic duties such as washing up and cooking. Arvon staff will provide limited general support. We will always aim to accommodate a personal care assistant provided a suitable room remains available on the relevant course and you give us sufficient advance notice. (Please note that a care assistant will not be able to take part in the course except to give you direct assistance.) While we offer some accessible facilities, our centres do vary considerably and we regret we may not be able to accommodate some requirements. If you have specific needs, it is important that you discuss these with centre staff before booking, to establish whether your needs can be met.
Comments and complaints
While Arvon makes every effort to maintain high standards and provide high-quality experiences for all writers, you may want to offer comments or make a complaint. At the end of every Arvon stay we give you the opportunity to provide feedback through our evaluation form, but if you feel this is not sufficient, you may wish to make a formal complaint. A copy of our complaints procedure can be found on our website. Note that all complaints should be made in writing, and we ask that you notify us within ten working days of the end of your course or retreat.
Arvon is registered for VAT and our prices include VAT where appropriate. If VAT rates change we reserve the right to amend our prices accordingly.
The contract between you and Arvon is governed by English law.
Grant Scheme Terms & Conditions
1. Arvon’s grant scheme is for writers who cannot afford the full course fee. Grants are awarded on the basis of meeting the specific eligibility criteria of the relevant scheme or financial need, and not writing ability.
2. Arvon grants are only available to writers living permanently in the UK. We are unable to offer grants to citizens of the UK living abroad. For the purposes of our policies, a UK resident is defined as a person who has their main home in the United Kingdom, who is registered with a medical practitioner in the UK, and who has been resident in the UK for 6 months out of the last 12.
3. An Arvon grant will cover some or all of the full cost of one Arvon course, which includes all tuition, food and accommodation.
4. Travel to and from the course must be arranged by the grant recipient, and all travel costs must be paid by the grant recipient. Arvon cannot provide financial assistance with travel.
5. We can only offer one grant per person in any given year and will not be able to consider applications from those attending more than one course in that year. Priority is given to those who have not received a grant or attended an Arvon course before. Individuals may receive a maximum of three grants in total and each successive grant will normally be significantly smaller than the last.
6. Grants are connected to a specific course and applicants may reserve a place prior to making a grant application. A place can be reserved for seven days, giving time to complete a grant application.
7. After receiving notification that they have been awarded a grant, the recipient must confirm their booking by paying a minimum deposit of £100 within seven days.
8. If a grant award is not confirmed by payment of deposit within seven days of notification, the award will be withdrawn and the provisional booking cancelled. Grant awards may only be used within the calendar year in which they are awarded.
9. It is a condition of the award that grant recipients must submit a short written report (either by email or post) within two weeks of the end of their chosen course, describing their experience and the impact it will have on their writing.
10. In exceptional cases where the grant award exceeds the balance of the fee (net of the grant), all or part of the deposit paid will be refunded on receipt of the post-course report. The deposit will not be refunded if the recipient fails to submit a report within two weeks of the end of their course, or fails to attend the course with less than six weeks’ notice. If the applicant receives funds from grant programmes other than the main grant programme, he/she must also comply with any specific conditions of that grant.
11. Decisions will be made by Arvon staff. Grants will be awarded solely on the basis of the financial information and personal statements supplied in the application forms.
12. Applicants will be notified of the decision regarding their application promptly, whether or not they have been successful.
13. Arvon reserves the right to award applicants a lesser amount than they applied for or to not award a grant, or to withdraw the grants scheme in whole or in part at any time.
14. Should a grant recipient need to transfer a course booking in line with Arvon’s Terms and Conditions of Booking (please see brochure or website), the grant award will be transferred to the new course if the applicant’s circumstances remain the same.
15. Should a grant recipient need to cancel a booking, the grant award will be withdrawn but a fresh application can be made in the future.
16. Our decisions on grant awards are final and we will not enter into any correspondence about them.
17. Arvon grants cannot be exchanged in whole or in part for any cash equivalent, nor transferred to another person.
18. Applications from previous Arvon grant recipients who have failed to attend a course without notice or good reason will not be considered.
19. Arvon reserves the right to withdraw any offer of a grant if the conditions of the award are not met.
Concession Pricing Terms & Conditions
The concession pricing is only available for specified courses, selected at Arvon’s discretion. If you wish to transfer your booking to another course you will have to pay the full price of that course, unless that course is available for concession pricing.
The concession pricing is only available for people booking after the date the late availability pricing has been made public. If you have already booked on a course and it is now being made available for concession pricing, you are still required to pay the full balance and are not entitled to the discount pricing. If you cancel your existing booking, you will not be permitted to re-book on the same course under the late availability concession pricing.
Arvon 1-1 Terms & Conditions
In making a booking for an Arvon 1-1 tutorial, by phone or online, you agree to the following terms and conditions:
Your booking is only secure when we have full payment. You should not consider your booking as definite until we have confirmed it by email.
You are asked to complete the submission form at least seven days before the start of the tutorial session, and that the submitted writing, which could include synopsis and/or chapter outlines and/or work-in-progress, is no more than 2000 words in total. If you submit the form later than seven days prior to the session, or you have submitted more than 2000 words, your tutor reserves the right to not read your submission in its entirety.
Cancellations of bookings will be accepted up to four weeks before the tutorial takes place and your payment will be returned, less a £30 cancellation charge. If you cancel your booking after this time, we will do our best to find someone else to take your place for the specific time you have booked, and, if we succeed, your full payment will be returned to you less the £30 cancellation charge. If we cannot re-fill your place, we will retain any payments you have made.
We reserve the right to cancel the tutorial if we consider that the chosen tutor is not the best fit for your particular writing needs. In this case, we will do our best to find you a new tutor, or we will refund you in full if no suitable tutor is found.
We ask that you install Skype and have a Skype account set up and tested before the tutorial, and that you have supplied us with a back-up telephone number as part of the submission form. In the event of a technical problem with your Skype call, the tutor will call your back-up telephone number. We will offer to reschedule the call if neither the Skype call or the back-up call is working.
Arvon’s 1-1 tutorials are only open to people aged 18 and over. By booking on a 1-1 Tutorial you confirm you are aged 18 or over.
We cannot accept transfers from an Arvon 1-1 Tutorial to an Arvon residential course or retreat.
Arvon 1-1 Tutorials rely on a supportive environment that depends on tolerance and understanding of all participants and tutors and their creative work. We therefore ask that you are thoughtful and respectful of the tutor and help foster an atmosphere conducive to creativity.
Arvon reserves the right to refuse a place and/or to exclude from the tutorial any writer who, in the opinion of the tutor, behaves in an abusive or disruptive manner or engages in any discriminatory conduct. No refund will be given if exclusion is made for these reasons.
Privacy and data
By booking, you agree that we may collect and store personal information about you and your interactions with Arvon. This includes: your personal contact details; gender; details of your booking and booking history, records of payments (not including credit/debit cards numbers, etc.); any correspondence and any other information we need to keep in order to administer your booking. All personal information is kept securely on electronic systems. We do not store payment card details. We will use this information to communicate with you about your booking and we may, unless you tell us otherwise, communicate with you occasionally about our work and other courses and support for writers that we offer. We never share or sell information about our course participants with any third party, either in aggregate or in individual form.
We will retain your completed application form and writing submission for up to two years. We will delete both after this period.