Have some questions about our camps?
Registration and costs
- What are the age requirements for camps?
- The minimum age for anyone attending The Oakes as a camper is eight years old. Additionally, each of the camps usually specifies an age range for campers wishing to attend.
- What does the camp cost cover?
- The camp cost typically pays for the food, activities and utility bills incurred during the camp. However, it does not cover the total cost of managing the centre or of developing new facilities. All of our staff are volunteers and fees are kept as low as possible to enable maximum participation.
The Oakes has public liability insurance. Any additional personal or travel insurance is the responsibility of the individual. Transport costs are the responsibility of the group. After arrival, all costs are included in the price.
The Oakes Trust is able to receive tax efficient gifts. The Trust relies heavily on donations made to the charity.
- What is the cancellation policy?
- Please notify us in writing if a booking must be cancelled. The following charges apply according to the timing of the cancellation in relation of the start of camp:
- within 8 weeks – 50% of total cost
- within 4 weeks – 75% of total cost
- within 2 weeks – 100% of total cost
In the event of your cancellation, we will invoke the cancellation charges listed above. We therefore recommend that to safeguard your possible loss of part or all your holiday cost due to cancellation or curtailment, that you have some sort of cancellation and/or travel insurance.
We regret that no refunds can be made in respect of accommodation vacated before the departure date.
- Are there camp places available at reduced cost?
- “The Oakes Holiday Fund” is a bursary fund available to assist campers with financial needs. The main criteria used is eligibility for free school meals, but the fund is very flexible and other factors are taken into account.
Please contact the office if you have children who may qualify or if there are other special circumstances which necessitate financial assistance.
- Do the same camp prices apply to visiting leaders?
- Yes. Visiting leaders are encouraged to participate in the camp along-side the campers they bring, and are provided with food and en-suite bedroom (subject to availability). Please get in touch if you do not need certain meals or accommodation.
About the camps
- Who runs the camp programme?
- The Oakes team runs all aspects of the camp programme, meaning any visiting group leaders who attend can focus their time on building relationships with their group. The Oakes provides the speaker for the talks, and the team organises and runs all the activities, dorm times and workshops and is responsible for all the catering and cleaning.
- Who deals with medication and first aid issues?
- Several team members have the First Aid at Work certificate and are the on-call first aiders. Most team members have had First Aid training and will clean up small cuts and grazes. The dispensation of all medication (including Paracetamol) is taken very seriously at The Oakes. Medication is stored safely away from the campers and is dispensed by two team members at the required time. Visiting leaders are asked not to dispense any medication to any child who is younger than 18 years old unless specifically requested to by the campers parent.
- What if my child has a special need?
- At The Oakes, we welcome all children and young people and children with special needs are no different. We regularly have children with a wide range of conditions on camp and are experienced at working with the carers of these children to make sure they have the best possible experience.
If your child has special needs, you may wish to complete our special needs form (below) to provide us with details about your child’s needs. Once we have received the form we may contact you to discuss your child’s holiday. Alternatively, please feel free to contact us directly to discuss your child’s needs. Whilst not a specialist centre we want to do everything that we can to make your child feel welcome.
Special Needs Form
Optional. If your child has special needs, you may wish to complete this form to provide us with more details about their personality, abilities or behaviour.*
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- Is the food safe to eat?
- Of course! Our “home-made” meals are carefully and lovingly prepared with every camper in mind. All of our staff have the required food hygiene training and we consistently receive the top food hygiene rating.
- Can you cater for special dietary requirements?
- We rigorously monitor all our ingredients to ensure that those with food allergies or other dietary requirements are provided with alternatives when necessary. If you have any questions, please get in touch, and one of our catering staff will call to discuss the camp menu with you.
- Is any spending money necessary?
- Each day during camp, the tuck shop opens, allowing campers to buy sweets, drinks and stationery. Clothing and books are also available to buy at the end of camp. See our packing page for more details on how much pocket money you might need to bring.
- How is Christianity explained to school groups?
- This is done in a similar way to Religious Education lessons and school assemblies. Everything is explained using phrases such as “Christians believe…”, “the Bible says…” or “as a Christian I believe”. The aim for school groups is that children leave knowing what Christians believe and having had the opportunity to ask a Christian why they believe this.
The teaching complements R.E. curriculums and the Qualifications and Curriculum Development Agency’s (QCDA) units of work.
- How is the Gospel presented to church groups?
- Many churched children/young people may know the Gospel but have never made a personal response. The Oakes provides an excellent opportunity to present a personal challenge and help affirm the hard work being done on a regular basis at Sunday School, Kids Club, and Youth Groups.
The Oakes provides an ideal opportunity for regular church attenders to invite their non-churched friends somewhere they will enjoy and hear the Gospel. Hopefully, those friends will then join the church group.
- What happens with lost property?
- To help us avoid collecting lost property, please ensure all items are labelled with the camper’s name. If you think you’ve left something at The Oakes, please send us a message or call us (phone number at bottom of page). We keep each item of lost property for four weeks before finding it a new home.
- Can campers and parents contact each other?
- Our general policy is to discourage communication with parents during the camp. However, phone calls to or from home may be made under special circumstances from our office phone. If you are concerned at any point, please feel free to call the office and leave a message. The camp programmer (leader) will get back to you as soon as possible.
Mobile phones (and other electronics) are collected and stored safely throughout the camp since they can be a distraction and we want to avoid any loss or damage. We recommend leaving them at home.
- What are the arrival and departure times?
- This depends on the camp in question. For weekend and most open camps, camp starts at 7pm and ends at 4pm. For mid-week school camps, or if you’re coming on a coach, please check with your school or group organiser.