Is Fairthorne Manor open?

Yes, Fairthorne Manor has been open throughout the pandemic with some reduction in services. As the roadmap moves us out of lockdown, more services will come back on stream. Our onsite nursery is open as normal, Daycamps are running every school holiday, our public campsite opens from 17th May along with our community programmes.  School and group day trips were delivered in September and October 2020 and we are welcoming day groups again from w/c 19th April 2021 and residentials from autumn 2021.

How has COVID affected YMCA Fairthorne Manor?

The loss of a full school residential season and many of our family programmes along with the reduction in numbers for our nursery and Daycamps has had a major impact on our income. As a children’s charity, this has resulted in a severe impact on our reserves and sadly we had to make a number of redundancies. However, we are looking forward to delivering our exciting 2021 plans as we find creative ways to ensure children, young people and families can continue to enjoy all that Fairthorne offers. Fairthorne Manor is part of the wider YMCA Fairthorne Group covering Hampshire and the Isle of Wight with 14 childcare settings, supported housing for young people and community services with a range of programmes.

Can my group come on a residential visit?

The latest Government guidelines have outlined a road map out of lockdown for school and residential trips, with trips permitted no earlier than step 3 on 17th May.   The Government have advised schools that have not already booked residential trips after 17th May to not enter into any new financial or contractual commitments until the advice is updated. Due to the delay in the Government advice, we have decided to focus on offering day trips until the end of the summer term and hope to welcome residential groups again in the autumn term 2021.  For information on day trips, visit our Day Visit page).

When residential trips are permitted again, how much will the trip cost and when will you release the prices?

The price will depend on the restrictions and recommendations put in place if residential trips are permitted, so we will need to assess the impact of these additional costs before publishing our rates. We would aim to do this as quickly as possible after any announcement and appreciate that schools and groups would need this information quickly.

When residential visits are permitted, how will you address COVID issues in accommodation and facilities? 

We are awaiting Government and industry guidance on how to keep children safe when on residential stays and will update this page when we have more information.  We assume that each group visiting us will travel as a single bubble.  Our indoor accommodation can be divided into separate wings and floors, each with their own separate entrance and exit. Each wing/floor has shared bathroom facilities that are only shared within the group/bubble. Accommodation is thoroughly cleaned prior to arrival and bathrooms cleaned daily during each stay. In our tented accommodation, children stay in 6 or 8 person tents which are cleaned after each use. Each school/bubble stay in separate tent villages separate from other groups and we currently have two separate blocks of toilets/showers for camping groups but if residential trips are permitted we would look to hire in additional facilities.

If residential trips aren’t permitted, can we come for day trips instead?

Yes, you can change your plans to a day visit. Our plans are focusing on ensuring we have sufficient capacity to deliver exciting day programmes to satisfy the expected demand. This can be for a day or multiple visits.

If residential trips aren’t permitted and we live too far away to come for the day, what do we do?

We would be sad not to see you, but please talk to us about booking a residential for autumn 2021 or in 2022. Deposits already held with us can be carried across to 2021/2022 in these cases.

How will you address COVID issues during meal times? 

Our main dining hall seats up to 250 children per sitting, so if groups have booked YMCA meals,  we would ensure bubbles eat separately utilising double sittings, one way systems and thorough cleaning between sittings, along with other indoor and marquee space depending on the number of children eating.   We would also look to offer more meals which are easily delivered outside such as barbeques and pizza.  If groups are bringing their own packed lunches, they can use their base for the day to eat lunches or eat outside if the weather is suitable.

How will you address COVID safety issues on activities?

The vast majority of our activities are delivered outside, which has been proven is a much safer environment during the pandemic.  Activities are delivered in line with the latest outdoor industry guidelines including cleaning and washing of kit between sessions, regular handwashing, maintaining social distance between instructors and children and the use of appropriate PPE where social distancing cannot be maintained.

How will you manage sharing of equipment?

Your equipment will be cleaned following the use by every bubble.  Young people and staff will be encouraged to wash their hands regularly and when this isn’t possible there will be supplies of antibacterial gel available before and after sessions to reduce the possibility of virus transmission.

How many different staff members will young people have contact with?

You will have a leader allocated to each bubble and as far as possible these will be the only staff they have contact with.  On occasion we may need to introduce staff members with specific qualifications to appropriately supervise and instruct your participants.  Any staff who interact with young people who need to work closely with them e.g. fitting harnesses will wear appropriate PPE and follow industry guidance for delivering these activities.  Throughout your visit we will limit interactions with other staff such as housekeeping and kitchen as much as possible.

How do you manage social distancing?

Site staff adhere to strict social distancing measures and are reminded by signage and guidance in staff areas.  Where staff cannot adhere to social distancing e.g. fitting your groups harnesses, staff will following industry guidance and use appropriate PPE.  Young people in the activity groups will also be reminded.

If there is more than one group onsite, how will you manage the social interaction of children outside their bubbles?

School and group bubbles will be maintained by utilising all of the vast 94 acres of space.  Bubbles will be allocated their own base and toilets and shower facilities and activities will be zoned together as much as possible to reduce the interaction between bubbles

Have you got a COVID risk assessment about additional precautions?

We have produced a risk statement outlining the precautions we have taken across a range of services which is available here on our website.

If our school or group are based close to Fairthorne, can parents drop off and collect children for day visits?

Yes, we have plenty of space and a system for parents to drop off and pick up which allows parents to remain in their vehicles reducing contact with teaching and Fairthorne staff. This is a proven system established during Daycamps, it saves on your transport costs and has proved very popular with local schools.

We paid a deposit for our 2020 booking but have made the decision not to visit in 2021, what happens to the deposit?

You can either move your deposit to 2022 or cancel and receive a refund of your deposit, as long as the Government advice that residentials are not permitted is still in place or if we have made the decision not to offer residentials for your preferred dates. If the Government advice changes, we are offering residentials and you decide not to visit, our normal cancellation conditions apply (see website for details).

We paid a deposit for our 2020 visit which didn’t go ahead, can we use that deposit against our 2021 visit?

Yes, we will have had this conversation with you during lockdown.

Have you made any changes to your booking conditions?

We have added a new section on COVID cancellations and Misrepresentation by You (see website for details)

What if we book and have to cancel as there is a COVID-19 national lockdown?

As per our updated booking conditions, in the event of a national lockdown resulting in the closure of Fairthorne Manor or relevant services, you can move your visit to alternative dates or receive a full refund.

What if we book and there is a local lockdown at Fairthorne Manor?

As per our updated booking conditions, in the event of a local lockdown resulting in the closure of Fairthorne Manor or relevant services, please talk to us about moving your visit date or receive a full refund.

What if we book and there is a local lockdown where our school or group is based?

In the event of a local lockdown where your school or group is based but where Fairthorne Manor remains open, where possible we will try to reschedule your visit date. In the event you are unable to reschedule to alternative dates, cancelled visits will be dealt with in line with our standard cancellation conditions.

Are any COVID related costs such as cancellation covered by insurance?

Please ensure you have sufficient insurance cover before making your booking and check the COVID related clauses with your insurers.