Statement 19 March 2020: COVID-19 Impact

18 March 2020

UPDATE: Activity at Woodbrooke’s centre, including B&B, Conferencing and onsite learning, will remain suspended until August 2020 at the earliest.  We have increased our online courses which can be accessed here.

Statement 19 March 2020

On the 14 of March Woodbrooke announced that we were suspending our on-site course programme, initially until April 30, as we felt it was in the best interest of our participants and associate tutors due to the risks presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In light of the rapidly developing situation we have now decided to:

  • close the site from 5pm on Saturday 21 March until 20 April. (now 31 July)
  • suspend all on-site courses and learning events until 30 June. (now 31 July)
  • suspend all Woodbrooke on the road events until 31 May. (now 31 July)
  • suspend all other residential on-site activity (conferences and B&B bookings) at Woodbrooke until 31 May. (now 31 July)

If you have a conference or accommodation booking in this period, our Sales and Reservations team will be in touch to confirm the cancellation. If you have a booking for a course or on-the-road event our Learning & Research Administration team will be in touch with you.

Please bear with us as we respond to enquiries, we are doing the best we can. We hope you will understand if we can’t process refunds as quickly as we normally would. As with many businesses and organisations we are struggling with cash flow problems and are looking to make use of any measures the government is putting in place. The mechanisms for doing this are not clear yet, neither is it clear if we are eligible to access them.

We will continue to support our staff as best we can, with some working from home and essential staff keeping the building open and facilities running. We will be monitoring public health advice on when to resume our residential services, and we have offered our facilities as part of the local response to the pandemic.

Many of the costs for the upkeep of Woodbrooke have not disappeared and they represent a significant financial outlay. Without any way to generate income during this period we are concerned about the long-term impact on Woodbrooke. We would welcome any contributions via donations, grants or low-interest loans. If you can help in any way please get in contact with us, as we consider our contingency plans in the coming days.

Woodbrooke’s Learning and Research Team is working hard to provide additional online worship, learning, and support for the Quaker community. We hope in the coming weeks to provide details of additional online opportunities from Woodbrooke. We have already found our online Quaker worship increasingly valued as faith groups are being asked to close, and we are working to expand it.

Further Information:

More articles

Mandy Cooper to be new Woodbrooke CEO

Woodbrooke Trustees are pleased to announce the appointment of Mandy Cooper as Woodbrooke’s new permanent CEO to take the charity into 2024 and beyond. Mandy will take over from Woodbrooke’s…

Read Article
Head shot of Ben Jarman

Ben Jarman to give 2024 Swarthmore Lecture

Woodbrooke is delighted to announce that Ben Jarman will give the 2024 Swarthmore Lecture. Ben’s lecture will focus on imprisonment and punishment, exploring what Quakers distinctively have to say today…

Read Article

Woodbrooke Centre: An anthology of memories

The sad news that the Woodbrooke Centre is to close by the end of October 2023 marks the end of an era. Whilst, there will be a new chapter for…

Read Article

sign up to our newsletter

You can download our latest brochure here, or why not sign up to receive our regular newsletters? We’ll share with you the latest updates from Woodbrooke, blogs, videos, new courses, and other opportunities.