Venues and accommodation

The Black Bull Hotel, Gartmore, Loch Lomond

To book a place at a retreat email Rowena

We use the Black Bull Hotel, Gartmore. Please plan to arrive at the hotel around 4pm on the first day. All writing sessions and meals are in the hotel.

The Black Bull Hotel in the village of Gartmore, near Aberfoyle, lies 24 miles north of Glasgow, just off the A81. This takes less than an hour by car/taxi from Glasgow or about 2 hours by public transport. When you arrive you will be allocated a room in the hotel or in a B&B in Aberfoyle or Gartmore. Transport between hotel and B&B can be provided.

If you have any specific requirements regarding the accommodation or have dietary requirements please let the venue know.

Bowfield Hotel, Renfrewshire

When you arrive at Bowfield you will be allocated a single-occupancy room.

Address: Bowfield Road, Howwood, Johnstone PA9 1DZ.

Email: reception@bowfieldhotel.co.uk

Phone: 01505 705225

Website: bowfieldhotel.co.uk

Getting to Bowfield Hotel (in the village of Howwood)

Plan to arrive at Bowfield 4.30pm latest. Check in to rooms is 3pm. This means arriving Glasgow around 3.30pm. Book your return departing after 6pm (train) or 7pm (plane).

Howwood is 16 miles south-west of Glasgow. Howwood train station is 1.5 miles from the retreat venue, mostly uphill.

Trains to Johnstone and Howwood leave from Glasgow Central Station. Trains to Johnstone are more frequent, and there’s a taxi company at Johnstone train station – call 01505 336000 to book – Johnstone-Bowfield costs £8.80.

Easiest journey from central Glasgow or Glasgow airport is taxi, Glasgow to Bowfield, costs £28.60; airport-Bowfield taxi £14.60 (prices at August 2018 – please check).

Callander Hostel, The Trossachs, near Stirling

I am still using other venues, but I want to make my retreats more accessible by making them cheaper. It’s the same but different: same programme, same timings, new venue, new price of £150. Shared accommodation in rooms of 2, 4, 6 and 8 bunk beds. The 2-bed option costs more. See photos on their website: callanderhostel.co.uk They organise group travel Glasgow-Callander-Glasgow – contact them to check price. On the pros and cons of shared accommodation, Alison Hardy explains: ‘I shared at Chapel Garth and was the oldest person in the room. (There were 5 of us.) Everyone was respectful of each other, and if they came to bed later they tiptoed in. (That was me the first night.) Also, b/c I was self-funding it made it a cheaper option for me. I slept OK but didn’t mind because I knew that it was only for 2 nights’ (quoted with her permission). Callander has pubs, cafes and walks.

To book a place, email me r.e.g.murrray@btinternet.com