songwriting faQs

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PLEASE READ OUR FAQs & TERMS THOROUGHLY BEFORE REGISTERING YOUR INTEREST

 

HOW MUCH IS A PLACE ON A SONGWRITING RETREAT?

£1,850 per person.

There are only eleven places available.

 

WHAT IS INCLUDED?

• Five days of songwriting with a multi award-winning Writer/s in Residence as your mentor throughout.

• Six nights in a lovely house on the shores of Loch Nevis. 

• Breakfast, lunch and dinners are all home-cooked by Janey and her team using locally sourced ingredients.(Please note that this is not a hotel so we all eat together around a big old table in the dining room.)

• An excursion into the wilderness to write.

• A live performance of your newly written songs at The Knoydart Community Hall on your last night.

• The boat fares to and from Mallaig and Inverie on the Knoydart peninsula.

 

WHAT IS INOT INCLUDED?

• Your travel to and from Mallaig.

• Alcoholic drinks.

• You are responsible for your own travel and instrument insurance.

• Dinner and drinks on one evening at either The Lookout or The Old Forge pub.

• Any further travel and hotel costs incurred from delays or cancellation by public transport services, including boats, due to weather conditions or general disruption.

 

I HAVE NEVER WRITTEN A SONG BEFORE, IS THIS RETREAT FOR ME?

Possibly not. 

Our retreats are aimed at songwriters of a certain level (not beginners) who may be seeking new inspiration from our Writers in Residence, or need to reconnect with their songwriting, develop their writing skills or are looking for guidance to help break through a creative block.

We encourage collaboration between our songwriters and several creative challenges set by the Writer in Residence is based on collaboration.

 

DO WE WRITE EVERY DAY?

Yes.

You will be given creative challenges each day, which could mean you write more than one song a day. 

WHO OWNS THE RIGHTS TO THE SONGS WE WRITE DURING THE RETREAT?

All rights are retained 100% by the songwriters. 

 

WHERE DO WE STAY?

Everyone stays in a lovely big house on the shores of Loch Nevis.

It's an old, privately owned house so it is important to highlight that weather conditions can sometimes affect the power and water supply. Problems are sorted as quickly as possible but this is a remote peninsula so it can take a little longer. If this does happen, we ask politely for your understanding!

Also, the water in the house is filtered but does come from the mountains so there is a hint of brown to the water. It is 100% safe to drink.

 

DO I SHARE A ROOM?

Probably. 

Depending on availability, the house accommodates a maximum of 11 guests and has six bedrooms comprising of five twin rooms and one single room. We can turn rooms into doubles for attendees coming as a couple. 

Three of the twin rooms and the single room share two bathrooms.

Allocation of the rooms will be on a first come first served basis.

If you choose to stay at alternative accommodation, at your own cost, please contact Janey before you reserve your place to discuss options and to check availability on the peninsula. 

 

WHAT SHOULD I BRING?

Musical instruments

Bring your instrument/s of choice in a sturdy travel case.

We will have a spare weighted keyboard, an acoustic guitar and full percussion.

Waterproof thermal outdoor clothing

Scotland is known for having four seasons in one day so please pack accordingly and expect to get wet!  A couple of pairs of walking boots, full waterproofs, water bottles, flasks and torches are all a must.

Sun cream, midge and tick repellent are also a necessity.

 

WHEN DO I NEED TO ARRIVE / DEPART?

Arrival

Everyone needs to arrive at the house the night before the first day, for the welcome meal, which means getting to Mallaig in time to catch the last boat to Inverie at 18:00. 

Departure

In order to catch the 08:00 boat from Inverie to Mallaig on your departure day, you will be picked up at the house after breakfast at 07:30 and driven to the pier.

 

HOW DO I BOOK MY PLACE?

We ask you to REGISTER YOUR INTEREST first by filling in a short form to also include links to your work.

We ask for this as we need to create the most balanced, creative environment for all our attendees to flourish so we need to hear everyone's work before we can confirm any places.  

 

DO YOU OFFER ANY SUBSIDIES?

Not just yet, however, several of our songwriters have been successful in applying to The Arts Council of England’s DEVELOPING YOUR CREATIVE PRACTICE fund. A successful application can cover the cost of the retreat plus travel.

https://www.artscouncil.org.uk/dycp

We advise you keep your eye on their funding rounds as they open them about 4 times a year.

You read about Susie Ledge's success application here.

 

 

OUR TERMS

 

HOW DO I PAY?

Upon receipt of your confirmation code, you pay your £300 deposit to confirm your place via the PAY YOUR DEPOSIT page on our website..

Your final payment must clear our bank 30 days prior to the date of your retreat.

If, however, you are booking within 30 days of the first day of the retreat then full payment will be required. 

 

DO YOU OFFER PAYMENT PLANS?

Yes.

We are happy to help your spread the costs by paying in 4 monthly instalments. If this is your preferred option then please contact Janey for more information - janey@theknoydartretreat.com

 

WHAT IS YOUR CANCELLATION POLICY?

Cancellations must be received my email to janey@theknoydartretreat.com

Depending on when you cancel, we have three policies:-

 

1) Cancellation received 60 days or more before the first day of your retreat:-

Your deposit and any payments made to The Knoydart Retreat will be refunded.

There will be an admin fee of £50.

 

2) Cancellation received 31 - 59 days before the first day of your retreat:-

Your deposit and 50% of your payments made to The Knoydart Retreat will be refunded.

There will be an admin fee of £50.

 

3) Cancellation received within 30 days of the first day of the retreat:-

a) your deposit will be held by The Knoydart Retreat

b) no further refund will be payable.

 

 

ABOUT KNOYDART

Knoydart is a peninsula located on the west coast of Scotland - opposite the southern tip of the Isle of Skye. It is home to around 110 residents – Janey being one of them!

The only way to get to Knoydart is by boat from Mallaig (unless you choose to hike the two-day, 17-mile walk across rough terrain!)

The house you stay in is in Inverie, which is the main village on the Knoydart peninsula.

 

HOW DO I GET THERE?

You should factor into your schedule that it could take you about one day to get to Inverie.

If you have any questions on travel, timetables and logistics just call us. We're here to help!

By car

• If you are coming in by car then drive to Mallaig (head for Mallaig Station PH41 4QA).

You will have to leave your vehicle in Mallaig for the duration of the retreat, but parking is free on East Bay. 

By train

• If you are travelling by train, we suggest you pick up the train from Glasgow Queen Street and catch the direct train to Mallaig via Fort William. This train takes about 5 and a half hours but the views through the window are stunning.  It is listed as one of the top 10 train journeys in the world so you can just sit back and relax!

By plane

• If you are flying to Scotland then you can either fly into Glasgow or Inverness airports.

Rendezvous

We will meet you at either the pier or Mallaig train station and escort you to the boat - which is only a 2-minute walk away!

 

ARE THERE ANY SHOPS IN KNOYDART?

Yes, there is a small community-owned shop in the village of Inverie that offers a small selection of produce and souvenirs.

We suggest you bring everything you may need for the week!

 

IS THERE A PUB?

Yes!

There's the community-owned pub called The Old Forge that proudly wears the badge of Britain's most remote pub!

We always aim to take you down there for a pint of the locally brewed beer.

 

 

THE WEATHER COULD AFFECT YOUR TRAVEL PLANS

The Scottish weather is notoriously unpredictable and ferociously changeable – this also being one of the many prime attractions for your photography course!

However, what this could mean is that when wind speeds are in excess of 25 knots the connecting boat between Mallaig and Inverie will not sail.

 

If, on the day of your arrival in Mallaig, your public transport has been delayed or your boat has been cancelled, then you are responsible for covering the costs of your accommodation and food in Mallaig. We will work with you to find suitable accommodation at a discounted rate.

 

If, on the day of your departure from Inverie, the boat has been cancelled, then you are responsible for covering the costs of your accommodation and food in Inverie. We will work with you to find suitable accommodation at a discounted rate.

 

We heartily recommend that your travel plans include flexible tickets as we cannot be held responsible for additional costs due to delays or cancelations.

 

 

ANY QUESTIONS?

Please do get in touch with Janey +44 (0)7979 968900  |  janey@theknoydartretreat.com