The camp will open on Friday 19 August 2016 from 1pm until late. Most people arrive on Friday. Activities start on Friday evening. We recommend arriving by Saturday evening. Please don’t arrive after the first weekend.
Check in at the Gate
You will receive a warm welcome, a cup of tea and the programme of activities for the 9 days. Newcomers to camp will be helped to find a place in a fire circle and introduced to their neighbours. If this is your first time, we encourage you to come early to give yourself time to explore and see where you want to camp.
Once you have put up your tent and unloaded your possessions, we ask you to park in the Car Park outside the Gate. From experience we find this helps us to enjoy our natural communal living space. By the end of the first weekend all cars need to be in the car park. Unless there are special circumstances, we don’t allow cars back onto the field until after the closing ceremony on the last morning of camp.
People with camper vans can park them on the field however they need to be situated on the periphery of the field. Gate crew will provide guidance on this.
We suggest camping in circles of 8-12 tents around a central camp fire. Depending when you come, there may be a number of circles being formed. We ask if you are establishing the circle, you don’t just keep the space for your friends but allow other people to join in, allowing the sense of community to flow and new friendships to grow.
You could see this circle as your family within the bigger family. This sacred space is a place where we help each other out. Initially there may be others there to help with your set up. Typically we share of tools and cooking equipment and provide general practical support, which may include caring for the children. We take care of our circle and its members and, over the week, it can flourish to become a source of information, care, safety, nourishment, and camaraderie.
Once everyone has arrived some circles decide amongst the participants to have a sharing circle. Only one person speaks at a time, the others listening deeply until they have finished. It helps to speak personally from our own experience. It is an opportunity to express our hopes and fears for the camp and any worries or particular needs we have.
Each circle is likely to organize itself in its own way. But please only create fires where indicated. Dig out the sods and put them off to the side, watering them periodically so that at the end of the camp they can be replaced. Just ensure the pit is clean, and free of ash before returning the sod. At DCN, we aim to leave the field as we found it.
Cooking and congregating around the fire is a great way to get to know others and start to create community. Firewood will be delivered to camp. Some people sort out their own breakfast and lunch. In the evenings, circles sometimes eat together although there is no obligation to do this, as the cafe . Circles find different ways of organising these tasks.
We suggest that where possible, you bring food supplies with you to minimize the need to leave the magic of camp to go shopping. Often someone in your circle will be able to get supplies, especially fresh food, for the whole circle. Of course some people like to leave the camp from time to time and there are lovely walks around the local countryside.
Collecting wood and water, doing the washing up, starting and tending the fire, is shared within the circle. Sometimes it seems a fairy has come in the night and done all the work but it is not always like that.
Camp time will be 1 hour ahead of British Summer Time. We will change our clocks at midnight on the first Friday evening by moving them 1 hour forward. Saturday morning will have a gentle start to reflect this. We will change our clocks back to British Summer Time at 1 am on the final Saturday morning.
The reason for this change is that we have had complaints from the local neighborhood about late night noise. Out of respect for our host, Bob, we would like to do our best to ensure our voluntary curfew of 11:00 pm for late night noise is even less likely to be broken by changing our perception of time! Other benefits are that it will be lighter later in the evening, and we get our hour back on the final morning allowing us and the site crew more time to packup to leave.
If you are a First Aider and can offer to help during camp, please let us know when you book or let the Gate team know when you arrive. First Aid equipment will be held at the Gate, as will the camp mobile phone and details of local medical facilities. If it’s not serious or an emergency, please turn to your circle for support first.
Facilities on site
There are compost toilets, a shower and a number of cold water sinks.
Living so closely together, it is in the interest of the health of all , that we wash our hands thoroughly after using the toilets.
Living as lightly as possible on the earth during camp, we ask that you recycle as much as possible within your circle.
We do not provide a skip for rubbish, and we ask that you take yours away at the end of camp. Circles often set up their own recycling stations to help with this. Details of the nearest off-camp recycling station is held at the Gate.
The evening curfew is usually discussed early on during camp week. Generally we encourage late night revellers to gather in the Night cafe to minimise noise elsewhere in site. We also discourage loud music after about 11p.m.
From our experience, we have found that it is important to adhere to the following as this leads to a more harmonious communal experience. So please no:
- Drugs, Drunkenness and anti-social behaviour
- Hi-Fi-s and Radios
It is also important that a good example is set for our young people particularly regarding alcohol. We positively discourage the drinking of alcohol by under 18s and require the support of parents/guardians with regard to this.
We also encourage you either to turn off your Mobile phones whilst on the camp field or to keep them on silent and to use them discreetly.
Please be sensitive about taking photographs - if in doubt ask, and please don’t post your photographs to open social media unless it is to the Friends of Dance Camp North Facebook page.
Adhering to these conditions will enhance the stability of camp and help to make possible a deeper experience of community and self-awareness.
Fortunately, this does not happen very often. We think it is important for the whole camp to have an appropriate sense of completion with the final Gathering on the Saturday. If you do have to leave early, it may feel difficult for you and for others, so please do it with care.
Each day at the Camp Gathering, jobs for which we need help will be announced, and we hope everyone will muck in. Thank you! This list of jobs is also be kept at the gate.
Dance Camp North thrives upon the love, willingness and generosity of our community!
Please act responsibly and respect both your fellow campers and the aims of Dance Camp North. If necessary Dance Camp North reserves the right to refuse admission and to ask people to leave. Dance Camp North accepts no liability for accidents, loss or damage to persons, vehicles or property on site, however caused.
Dance Camp North Rights and Responsibilities of Membership document is here