Yoga, food, countryside and relaxation in a beautiful setting…
– including Soundbath Saturday night
– upcoming in May 1st-3rd 2020, November 6-8th 2020 and January 8-10th 2021
Rejuvenate, relax and de-stress with Charlotte Watts over a long and luxurious weekend at a truly stunning location in an area of outstanding natural beauty. Your programme will include two daily yoga sessions, alongside options to join a silent walk, nutrition talk and evening mindfulness meditations – or simply take some time in the countryside, relax or chat with others.
Yoga content will vary according to time of day, more energising and opening in the mornings, moving to relaxing and restoring towards the end of the day and optional late night meditation. The teachings for the weekend will be somatic, explorative, restorative, meditative and influenced by Feldenkrais, Qi Gong and other practices that step away from an emphasis on reaching particular forms or goals within asana. Through embodied awareness, there will be an emphasis on recognising and offering kind attention to the habits and expectations we may spend our time retreading in our work and personal lives. See the full sample programme below.
There is also a treat on the Saturday night, with Ruth Summers of Dao Natural Health running a Therapeutic Soundbath. You can fully relax as the beautiful and therapeutic sounds of gongs, Himalayan singing bowls, crystal singing bowls, rainsticks and therapeutic percussion wash over you; helping to relax the system on all levels of being; physically, mentally, emotionally, energetically/spiritually, bringing calm to the body and mind and inviting a state of deep relaxation similar to meditation. The sound initiates a ‘conversation’ with the system and creates a space within which an individual may see themselves and their process more clearly, offering the potential for deep transformation.
Happy feedback from previous weekends with Charlotte at Gayles:
“My weekend with Charlotte was absolutely wonderful. Gayles is a beautiful setting and the food was absolutely amazing. Despite my apprehensions about the dormitory room, I was extremely comfortable and relaxed. The facilities were extremely high standard, including the yoga studio which was well equipped and peaceful. Charlotte is an extremely kind, considerate and intuitive yoga teacher. She knew when was the right time to push and challenge me and when I needed to rest or take a break. Her laid back and relaxed attitude made me feel totally at ease, both in the yoga studio and outside of it where she was very approachable and easy to talk to. I would highly recommend this retreat and I will certainly be going back there myself. ” – Rachel, London
“Four days after the retreat I still feel as relaxed and calm and positive as I did whilst there! I loved the restorative yoga parts we did and feel very positive and motivated about taking this forward. I will go as far as to say I have raised happiness levels and I know that I can draw on Charlotte’s mindfulness approach on a daily basis to gradually improve my wellbeing (and parenting skills).” Sophie, Brighton
“Weekends at Gayle’s with Charlotte offer us the opportunity to relax and nourish ourselves in so many ways – we arrive as a couple and come away feeling like individuals. The programme is structured yet gentle, non-competitive and hugely restorative which is a relief in itself. It`s so lovely to be able to base ourselves in comfortable and beautiful surroundings a few miles from home – it takes going away for the weekend to another level – simples!” – Linda, Brighton
“I’ve been on 2 retreats at Gayle’s with Charlotte. Gayle’s is a beautiful venue, even though it’s dorm accommodation it is really comfortable with top notch bedding and the option of a single bed if you can’t handle a bunk. The location is stunning and it’s a great opportunity to detox from mobile phones and the busyness of the outside world! The food at Gayle’s is excellent – they are especially good at really tasty, wholesome vegetarian cuisine. Charlotte really puts a lot of effort into her classes, they are well planned and expertly taught. I really enjoy the restful and restorative element to the practice which makes a massive difference to my body which is often in fight or flight mode – this type of yoga really brings me back down to earth. Having said that on retreat there is also the chance to go into a stronger practice which I am normally resistant to but enjoy the benefits when I get there. This is a great value retreat with an excellent teacher in a stunning location.” – Julie, Sussex
- Friday 1st – Sunday 3rd May 2020 – only dormitory places left
- Friday 6th – Sunday 8th November 2020 – double room booked
- Friday 8th – Sunday 10th January 2021 – dormitory places only left for this retreat
- Somatics Training Retreat for Yoga Teachers only: March 13-15 2020 – see this page for more details on this weekend
- Standard rate £295 for 2 nights
- One single room available for £365 for 2 nights
- One double room available for £425 for 2 nights for one person / £365 per person sharing double for 2 nights
- Early-bird rate £20 off each price if booked before 6 weeks of the start date
- Book early as only 20 places available!
Included: all food, yoga, soundbath, silent walk & accommodation
Not included: travel
Gayles is a picturesque retreat centre ideally situated in outstanding countryside on the South Downs, five miles from Eastbourne and fifteen from Brighton. Here rural doesn’t mean hard to reach; there are excellent train services from the nearby towns that provide direct travel to and from London Victoria, Gatwick, Ashford International, Brighton and so on. Gayles is just one-and-a-half hour drive from London and there is a regular bus service that conveniently stops beside the entrance. For European visitors there is a ferry service to and from mainland Europe from Newhaven, which is only a twenty-minute drive away from retreat.
The environment and ambience at Gayles encourages an open, safe, relaxed and intimate atmosphere that promotes learning and self-development. The owners Derry and Roz believe that retreats should be fulfilling and inspiring; unobtrusive but available. They do all they can to support you in making the most of your time here so that everybody leaves feeling stimulated, nourished and refreshed.
Gayles is set in ten acres of land with beautiful sea views from the cliffs; adjacent to the Seven Sisters Country Park (an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty), The National Trust Crowlink Estate and Friston Forest.
With its open fire, high ceiling and refreshing artworks, The Stables, a beautifully converted 1930s stable and adjoining property, provides a warm and practical area for eating, chatting and relaxing. The ground level has an open-plan, well equipped, kitchen and dining room with under-floor heating. There is a separate stereo system with a CD player, DAB radio and amplifier (with an iPod connection cable) which you may wish to use to enhance your own ambience. Immediately outside there is a large, decked, seated eating area which is wonderful for informal meals and gatherings in more clement weather.
There is extraordinarily beautiful countryside, seaside and excellent walking opportunities all around.
All accommodation is in comfortable dormitories. The accommodation, studio and eating areas are situated close together around a thoughtfully maintained garden next to gentle meadows offering stunning, panoramic views, allowing you space between activities and room to wander and reflect. There are two recently renovated dormitories, ‘The Studio’ and ‘The Playroom’, which offer comfortable and spacious accommodation for up to seventeen people.
All accommodation is equipped with toilets, showers and washing areas as well as hot drink making facilities. There are good quality, sturdy single and bunk beds with individual storage drawers. Duvets, pillows, linen and towels are provided.
Apart from the sensitively managed estate in which students are free to wander, there is also a private hard surface tennis court and open air pool that you are welcome to use in warmer months.
Good quality locally sourced food is tasty and nourishing and is served in the relaxed atmosphere of the beautifully converted dining room. If the weather is sunny there is the option of eating out in the open on the terrace. Food will be vegetarian and organic and Charlotte works alongside the chef to ensure it follows her exacting nutritional standards! Any food intolerances can be accommodated and you will be asked for details on the booking form.
Weekend’s Sample Programme (each retreat content may differ):
All activities are optional but it is best for the group if you try to participate in most, especially the yoga sessions. Content and times will vary according to the weather and the group’s needs, so more cosy in winter and evening meditations may be outside whenever weather permits – and warm blankets enable! There are plenty of nooks and crannies at Gayle’s for you to retreat whenever you need and the studio will be available as a silent space between classes. There will also be an optional nutrition talk on Easy Energy and Release from Cravings.
4pm – arrival and tea
5.30–6.45pm yoga – somatic, releasing and opening through to restorative
7pm – dinner
9-9.30pm – restorative yoga and mindfulness meditation
7.30-8am – meditation (non-guided, silent sitting)
8–9am – breakfast
10am-12pm yoga – energising, heart-opening and rejuvenating
1-2pm – lunch
2-5pm – free time to explore, walk, chill out – includes optional 3-4pm silent walk
5.15-7pm yoga – mindful, active relaxation and restorative
7.15pm – dinner
8.30-9.30pm – Soundbath with Ruth Summers
7.30-8am – meditation (non-guided, silent sitting)
8–9am – breakfast
10am-12pm yoga – energising, heart-opening and releasing
1-2pm – lunch
2.15pm – nutrition talk: Easy Energy and Release from Cravings
3-3.30pm – simple qi-gong practice to close
4pm – departure
Payment terms and booking
A non-refundable deposit of £70 is required to confirm your place*. The balance is due no less than 6 weeks prior to the event and can be paid with credit or debit card or by any of the methods below. You may also pay in full at the time of booking if you prefer or in installments if arranged. Bookings made less than 6 weeks prior to the event must be paid in full.
* if I can fill all 20 places, deposit can be transferred to a future retreat if you need to change
To send me £70 to reserve your place, you can pay in one of the following ways and email me at email@example.com to let me know how money is on its way:
- Click here to be redirected to Paypal to pay from your account or with debit or credit card (even if you don’t have a Paypal account).
- Transfer directly into my bank account: Ms Charlotte Watts, Cooperative Bank, Sort code 089299, Account number 69243840
Please include your full name and the dates of the week/s you would like to book. I will send you back a full booking form to complete your booking.
You will be the contacted for the remaining balance to be paid 6 weeks before the start date of the retreat. See the cancellation terms below.
Please note that whilst I will do everything possible to adhere to the programme and details laid out above, some things are outside my control, and therefore I reserve the right to make changes if necessary.
- Gayles Retreat, Friston, Eastbourne, East Sussex BN20 0BA
- 07721 023 845 or 07969 749 829 (Roz & Derry Robinson)
- Gayles is situated off the A259, 5 miles from Eastbourne and 15 miles from Brighton and about one mile from the picturesque village of East Dean. It is easy to find and access is excellent.
- See Google map here
Travelling east on A27 from Worthing/Brighton, follow signs to Newhaven/Lewes. At roundabout after the rail crossing you have a choice between Lewes and Newhaven; take A26 to Newhaven / Seaford. Alternatively follow the coast road A259 from Brighton to Newhaven. In Newhaven, follow sign to the left for Seaford A259.
Carry on the A259 until you reach Seaford and a mini roundabout with the train station on your right hand side. Stay on the A259 going out of town and continue in the direction of Eastbourne. You will come upon a small bridge spanning a water course. Continue over the single lane bridge and you will then come upon a farm house and the Seven Sisters Cycle hire shop on your left where the road begins to start to climb up a small hill. Approximately 2 miles beyond these buildings towards the crest of the hill there is a bus stop on the right hand side of the road as well as the entrance to the private road leading to Gayles.
From Victoria every 30 minutes, change at Lewes for Seaford or Eastbourne – takes approximately 1 hour 20 mins. There are usually taxis at the station. Gayles retreat is 4 miles from Eastbourne or Seaford railway stations.
Bus from Brighton:
Buses run from Churchill Square and the seafront regularly, taking just under an hour directly to the top of Gayle’s driveway – see the timetable here.
If you then cannot attend for any reason, please inform us in writing, but the following conditions apply:
- Whilst we would wish to treat cancellation sympathetically our spaces are limited and the following charges must be applied. If your space can be filled, there may be the possibility of transferring your place to a future retreat, but this is at our discretion, otherwise:
- From registration to 6 weeks (44 days) before departure – loss of deposit (*if I can fill all 18 places, deposit can be transferred to a future retreat if you need to change)
- 43-28 days before departure 50% of total price
- 27-14 days before departure 65% of total price
- 13- or less before departure 100% of price
If you are not sure you’ll be able to come, please let us know as soon as possible so we can discuss and find the best outcome.