The Edward Carpenter Community
For men who love men

High Close

Lake District, Cumbria

Monday 20th to Monday 27th August 2018

Langdale Youth Hostel, High Close Cottage, Loughrigg, Ambleside LA22 9HJ

View of Langdale Youth Hostel, High Close

After many years absence we’re returning to High Close for a week in August.  A magical place to stay – this sprawling Victorian mansion is steeped in history and perched above its own three tier arboretum that’s managed by the National Trust. The hostel’s enviable location is unmatched with stunning views of the Langdale Pikes. This is a place from which the central fells can be explored and enjoyed immediately upon stepping through the front door. The hostel is set in a quiet hillside in the beautiful Langdale Valley yet within easy reach of Ambleside and Grasmere where Wordsworth lived for many years at Dove Cottage. The area offers excellent walking from easy afternoon strolls to energetic all-day mountain hikes and nearby Loughrigg Tarn offers exhilarating outdoor swimming.

We have exclusive use of the large rambling building with its big dining room and workshop spaces, secluded garden and veranda with wide views toward Lake Windermere. Sleeping accommodation is in bunk beds in rooms varying in size from four to twelve beds and with many more beds than people there is plenty of room to spread out. All meals are vegetarian and prepared for us by the hostel staff.

What happens on the week depends on the participants who come. While lots of people will take advantage of the outdoors and go off hiking in the fells it may be you want to spend time chilling out on the veranda, playing games, sitting up late chatting and making new friends. There’s plenty of scope both to facilitate and participate in activities and workshops - it all depends on what those attending decide to bring and contribute. The time is ours to unwind, meditate, sing, dance, walk or just take in the beautiful countryside. Base groups and/or a heart circle will meet daily before the evening meal and provide an opportunity to get to know five or six gay men really well and help us share the challenges and joys of being in a community of 50 gay men. Above all we hope the week will be relaxed, informal, friendly and fun.


The organisers are Ivan Cartwright, Jimmy MacSweeney and Tecwyn Vaughan Jones who’ve all been to many ECC weeks in the Lake District over the years.

Photo of Ivan Cartwright

Ivan Cartwright

Photo of Jimmy MacSweeney

Jimmy MacSweeney

Photo of Tecwyn Vaughan Jones

Tecwyn Vaughan Jones


The building can present some physical challenges for people with mobility difficulties. If you have concerns or queries please contact Ivan before booking:  ivancartwright [at] tel: 07828 121465

50 places will be available on the week and we’ll reserve a proportion for first-timers until 30th June 2018. Places can fill up very quickly, so book soon.

Travel to High Close
The nearest railway station is Windermere which is 9 miles away. The nearest bus stop is one mile away in Elterwater Village. There is a daily bus service which runs hourly.

Joining instructions will be sent to everyone attending which will give full details on what to bring, how to get here etc.

How to book

This event is fully booked and has a waiting list of 2 people.
There's usually a good chance that a place will become available, so please feel free to book on the waiting list. We still require a deposit, and will contact you if a place becomes available.

You can book your place online here, or download a paper form to send to the booking person. You'll be asked to state how much you're going to pay for your place, and how much you'll pay now as a deposit. You can make your payment by cheque or bank transfer, and you should send it to us straight away to secure your place.

Payments for ECC events are on a sliding scale according to your income, and you're invited to pay as much or as little as you can afford. The breakeven cost for this event is £370.00 and the rates for different income levels are shown below. We also offer a limited number of bursaries to help people on very low incomes. If you don't feel you can afford the concessionary rate, we may be able to help. Please contact the booking person first to see if a bursary place is available.

Concessionary rate (for people living at benefit levels)£200.00
Low income (£10k to £20k)£370.00
Average income (£20k to £30k)£445.00
High income (£30k or more)£499.00
Breakeven cost£370.00

Please also refer to our booking terms and conditions

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