Reading Retreat

Help us grow...

As with all growing ventures the biggest challenge is to get your business known to the widest audience. We would really like your help to spread the word. Please can you share our website, Facebook and twitter with friends, family and colleagues. 

We want to make it worth your while so....if someone books with us because of your recommendation we will send you your choice of either a £25 book token or £50 voucher toward one of our retreats. 

So get sharing!

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There's a name...

...for that pile of books beside the bed.  TSUNDOKU is the Japanese phrase for acquiring reading materials in one's home but letting them pile up without being read!

Yum Yum

Sunday 1st October 2017

Sara has been cooking up a storm in the kitchen. At the moment she is testing out teatime treats including, Salted Caramel Brownies; Walnut, Date and Honey Cake; Classic Lemon Drizzle and a very special Clementine Cake.

Somerset Guest Authors announced

Saturuday 2nd February 2019

We are delighted to announce our authors for our Somerset Retreats taking place in March 2019.

Clare Donoghue’s debut novel was published in 2014 and she written four in her series of chilling and compelling police procedurals set in London. She has lived in Somerset since she stopped working as a City Lawyer. She was long-listed for the CWA Debut Dagger in 2011. Her latest novel, The Night Stalker, is set in Somerset. She’s a compulsive reader of crime novels and we look forward to hearing her talk at our Weekend Retreat.

Chris Ewan has kindly agreed to return after his visit last year to our Somerset Retreat. He’s written a series of novels featuring The Good Thief and some exciting thrillers featuring international kidnap and safe houses, and the shady world of professional identity protection. We’re looking forward to hearing his latest good reads and current projects. Chris is joining us at our Midweek Retreat.

Slightly Foxed

Friday 16th November 2018

We’re very excited to be able to announce a new partnership with Slightly Foxed, the subscription book club that introduces readers to forgotten gems. Our Retreats will offer copies of their quarterly magazines and a little Foxed treat in the goody bags.  We’re offering members of Slightly Foxed a 10% discount on any of our Retreats. They have a fascinating newsletter and their subscriptions start at a very reasonable £40. More details can be found here


Supporting our Community

Monday 13th August 2018

We were very proud to be able to support our local community this week.  The National Citizen Service, run locally by Cambridge United Community Trust, offer young people (aged 15-17) the opportunity to work on social action projects in their local community.  One of our local groups committed to assisting Jimmy's Nightshelter, by raising funds to create Comfort Boxes to be given to the homeless people who arrive at Jimmy's, these included toiletries, socks, packaged food.  We donated a book for each box.  


Murder on Retreat...

Thursday 19th July 2018

Our new themed retreat featuring Agatha Christie with Sophie Hannah as our guest author, completely sold out in a matter of days.  We really looking forward to hearing from Sophie about writing Poirot novels.  As this has already proved so popular, we will definitely be looking to do more in the future. 

If you need a Christie fix in the meantime, why not check out this unique courtroom staging of  Witness for the Prosecution which is running at London's County Hall and booking until March 2019.

On the radio again

Wednesday 11th July

Cressi was representing us again on BBC Radio recently, this time to talk about a report that 1 in 11 children surveyed do not have a book of their own at home.  Given this, we promoted the important role that libraries can play in bringing books into children's lives.  She also talked about how to make reading more appealing to teenagers, mentioning that Donald Trump doesn't read books and the history of 'dangerous' banned books.

You can find more about the survey here:

Kitchen news

Tuesday 27th March 2018

Just to whet your appetite a little, here are some examples of the delicious meals Sara prepares for our very lucky readers, they also enjoy breakfast, lunch and some very tempting snack trays to fuel their reading!   Always using lovely fresh ingredients, she carefully designs each menu to ensure that the varied dietary preferences of our readers are met.  Come and join at a retreat soon so you can relax,eat and read.

Reading Retreat in the News.

Wednesday 14th March 2018

We were very pleased to welcome ITV news journalist Kevin Ashford to our Kent Retreat.   He has filmed a lovely piece for ITV regional news which is syndicated to news regions around the country. Just in case you miss it you can watch it here.

Just returned from Kent...

Monday 12th March 2018

Where we had such a glorious Retreat with lovely readers, you can read about it on our Recent Retreats page.  The house was surrounded by beautiful English countryside with fabulous sunrises each morning.  Much reading was done and great discussions around the dinner table.  Want to join us next time?  We have a few rooms left before our Summer break, check availability here.

Reading Retreat on the airwaves

 Wednesday 21st February 2018

Did you catch us on The World at One on Radio Four on Tuesday 13th February?  BBC journalist Emma Jane Kirby visited us on our Thorpeness retreat and quizzed the readers on their experience.  Click play here to hear what they thought!

For a longer written piece, see

We also had a chat with Malcolm Boyden at BBC Hereford and Worcestershire -  - 10 mins in this time.

We have had a lot of interest after the radio programmes, so don’t forget to sign up to our mailing list for a first look at our next dates and venues.  And don’t forget to keep an eye out for us, you never know where we’ll pop up next!

Cambridge Independent

Monday 6th November 2017

Recently we were interviewed by our local newspaper, we appeared in print and now the article is now on line.  They also sent out a photographer which means you get to see Cressi and Sara on the website for the first time.  We have another photoshoot planned so you will soon be able to see images from our retreats and some of the lovely houses we use.  Join our mailing list to make sure you keep up to date with all our news.

Fabulous piece in The Daily Telegraph

Wednesday 25th October 2017

We were very pleased to be interviewed as part of this feature on the benefits of a Reading Retreat.  Chuffed to be in the company of Howard Jacobson and Alain de Botton!  We only have 3 rooms left in Thorpeness following all the interest in the article.  So, if you are thinking about joining us, don't leave it too long! 

Click here to see full Telegraph Article

 Thorpeness Author Announced

Tuesday 10th October 2017

Very happy to announce that we will be joined on this retreat by Penny Hancock
Penny is the author of the best-selling Tideline, a Richard and Judy 'Summer Read' in 2012. She has written two further novels, The Darkening Hour, (a Good Housekeeping thriller of the month) and A Trick of the Mind.   As well as writing, Penny teaches creative writing, and has worked as a Royal Literary Fellow, a primary school teacher and a teacher of English as a foreign language.  Penny is working on her fourth novel, due to be published by Mantle (an imprint of Pan Macmillan) in January 2019.
Don't miss this opportunity to join us for dinner with Penny to discuss her reading, books and work in progress.  This retreat is in a stunning beach front house in Thorpeness, Suffolk.  With breathtaking views from most rooms and a 30 metre walk to the sea, the setting is idyllic.  This house offers cosy rooms and wood-burning stoves, the perfect Winter Reading Retreat.  

Our Thorpeness Retreat runs from Friday 2nd to Monday 5th February 2018.  We currently only have 3 rooms remaining so make sure you book your place soon.

First 2018 Dates announced

Thursday 5th October 2017

We are very excited that our new dates for 2018 have just been launched - we have spent weeks, researching, checking and double checking properties to make sure that are just perfect for you.  We are really pleased that we found a house right on the beach in Suffolk for our first date in February.  We will need to remind our 'Retreaters' to bring their woollies for a bracing walk along the beach, however we know some will just want to stay by the fire! We have also been speaking with lots of Authors who are all excited to come and meet you, and over dinner, share their love of reading.

Gift Voucher

We may have just found your perfect  present! Our gift vouchers can be purchased in any value towards one of our Retreats.  Just give us a call and we can send to you or straight to the very lucky recipient.


Thursday 22nd November 2018


We are very proud of the food we offer on our Retreats, we work hard to ensure all dietary needs are met, here are just some of our sample menus.

Sample Dinner Menus

Beetroot, Apple & Goats Cheese Salad

with Balsamic Dressing

CHicken Breast with

Wild Mushroom Sauce

Roasted Kale

Tenderstem Broccoli

New Potatoes

Apple Tart Tatin


Clotted Cream


3 cheese selection with

biscuits and chutney

Coffee or SPeciality Tea





Cauliflower and Manchego Fritters


Romesco Relish

Steak and Parmesan Involtini

With Roasted Potatoes and



New York Vanilla Cheesecake

Cheese board


Crackers and chutney

Coffee or SPeciality Tea




Courgette Fritters

With Sweet Chili Dip

Maple Parsnip & Chestnut


With Peas and Carro ts

Coconut Panna Cotta

Cheese board


Crackers and chutney

Coffee or SPeciality Tea




Vegetable samosa

With ManGo Chutney

Thai Fish Curry

with Coriander Rice

and Roti

St Clements Granita

with Shortbread

Cheese board


Crackers and chutney

Coffee or SPeciality Tea








Goody Bags

Wednesday 27th September 2017

Those of you who know Cressi will know that she is a stationery addict, well these last few weeks she had been in her element putting together the most beautiful Goody Bags for our guests, I won't spoil the surprise by telling you what she has put together, but they are just one more thing that makes our Retreats just that little bit special.