About Horton WHC

Work Week – 24th – 28th November - Please come and help maintain horton! You can come for one day, or the whole week or whenever you can make it. Jobs will include: painting, re-grouting, cementing, gardening, shower fixing…etc Experience is warmly welcomed, but no worries if you don’t have any and are hard-working and eager to learn. Free stay included plus travel expenses reimbursed (depending on expenditure). Well worth coming up and exchanging a few hours work for a free stay! Cleaners and cooks welcome also!

Housesitter Training – 9th – 10th December - This should be a handful of women interested in House-sitting and getting to know the house and it’s tasks over the 2 days.
House-sitting training is FREE, so your stay and all your food costs are included, and your travel expenses can be reimbursed up to a
certain amount (try and buy a ticket in advance if coming on the
train, as to save on cost). Then when the workers take their holiday
time, you may be contacted to see if you can House-sit for a few days
while they’re away.

As this is mid week, understandable not every woman can mak it. The other option is to come up when you like, but to ring before hand
to arrange dates with the workers on 01729 860207. That would be just to check you haven’t chosen a few days that are super busy and to make sure they will have time to show you everything during your stay.

Dear guests, We are on the lookout for some one who knows about Woodburners, enough to have a look at the one we have in the coach house as we have a problem with it! If you or anyone you know can help please come to the centre. Travel expenses can be reimbursed and a free stay included for your help! Spread the word and let’s get this sorted!
(The problem is: The flue appears not to be fitted correctly and smoke fills the room when the door is shut. We just need someone to have a look and tell us what we need to do!)

Front of the house in the sunshine

The Women’s Holiday Centre is in the small Yorkshire village of Horton-in-Ribblesdale, and is the only collective, non-profit-making, cooperatively ran holiday centre for women and children in the UK.

It was set up in 1980 as a charitable co-operative, by women involved in feminism and the women’s liberation movement. Since then, this volunteer-run women’s co-op has been making a difference to the lives of thousands of women and children from all over the country, by providing affordable holidays with a sliding scale for payments according to income.

We aim to keep the lowest charge for one night, including all the food you need to cook, at the daily rate of benefit entitlement. Other low-cost holiday options, such as renting a caravan or camping, can leave a woman feeling even more isolated and vulnerable than she does at home, with many more practical tasks to manage in a smaller space. In contrast, the Women’s Holiday Centre provides a uniquely supportive environment, where women often socialise together and share meals etc.

Sharing the cooking and the eating!

Sharing the cooking and the eating!

The Women’s Holiday Centre is for all women, with or without children, on their own, or with friends. Women from all walks of life are welcome and visit regularly. The house offers a safe and friendly environment, where women and children can feel at home and get to know each other. Items such as towels, toiletries, and both adult and children’s spare coats/hats/gloves/wellies etc are kept at the house so that those using public transport have less to carry.

The part B&B, part hostel style accommodation consists of a mix of private and shared bedrooms, plus two sitting rooms, a large playroom, large kitchen and garden. There is a very relaxed and informal self-catering arrangement, with vegetarian and vegan food provided. During mid-week term-times, the house can offer a quiet place that can be ideal for women recovering from various illnesses or stresses.

Disabled access is very basic at the moment, and we are currently working to raise funds for substantial alterations to improve this. Please contact us to discuss any particular requirements.

The house has gone ECO friendly!

Our new and amazing Biomass Carbon-neutral boiler!

Our new and amazing Biomass Carbon-neutral boiler!

 The cosy kushty centre is now being heated by a carbon-neutral very expensive, biomass boiler…but it will be well worth it in the long run! Like all good Horton stories, a bit of a crisis was uprooted when our beautiful Aga died. For year upon year she served the house faithfully, never taking a day off sick and always meeting the warm expectations of the guests.  She grew poorly overtime and an Aga doctor had to be called in to check up and women volunteered their time and love to fix her up again. But in the March of 2013 she came to an abrupt holt and an ever growing hole was found in her belly. This time, no amount of love and tender loving care could bring her back into use. And as usual, many conversations between women who had just met each other, lots of special WHC magic plus some co-operative working and Management commitment, we managed to get ourselves back to being nice and toasty with a beautiful, carbon-neutral boiler, heating the whole house.

We considered all forms of heating the house. There’s no gas to the property, so that was near impossible. The people in the village who use oil are currently trying to change as it’s so expensive. Other options would have involved putting a more substantial power supply to the house, for example solar panels, etc… But none of the ways we looked at were as perfect as a Biomass boiler, and we needed to get something quick, before the winter months approched us again and the cold seeped into the house!  We eventually decided that in the long run this boiler would be most efficient and long lasting, supplying us with enough heat. It is now installed and in use, we have warm, nay…hot, radiators and hot water heated by our wonderful carbon neutral machine. The house is now toasty, but we need your help! We are still to buy the boiler, and need to do this in the next 3 years. Please donate what you can afford now, so we are able to buy the boiler. Or contact us to understand more about it.

 New batch of mugs for Christmas!


Over the summer of 2013 we were selling some limited, special edition, unique, collectible, handmade and hand designed Women’s Holiday Centre mugs! These were available at the centre and to order online, so you could take something away with you after your holiday to remember it by. More mugs are in the making, with their own box that comes with them! Contact us now to place your order, they make fabulous christmas/solstice presents!! We are currently looking into posting out orders too, so don’t worry if you can’t make it up to the centre to collect your mug.

Can you promote this amazing unique space?!

We have had 2 wonderful volunteers from Bradford and Brighouse who have been helping with publicise round Bradford and district, sending out leaflets, dropping them off, visiting women’s groups in the local area and community centres, schools, day care centres…. If you know of places or groups in your local area please contact us for leaflets, the promotional video, a Powerpoint presentation. These things you could send to groups/places you know of or to visit them.  Travel expenses can be reimbursed for the time being so get in there quick as we can’t always offer this.
Hope some of you take up this fab opportunity! I am, keep coming up here for a lovely stay in exchange for a little bit of work and it helps the centre so much.
Also if you know anyone else who may be interested pass the message on!


Is there somewhere you could put a poster or some leaflets for Horton?

For leaflets please send a stamped, addressed envelope to us, or contact us if this is difficult for you.
We did have some hand-printed A2 posters at the centre, which were free for you to take but gratefully/unfortunately for you, these have all been taken!
Now you have the option to contact us for an electronic copy, more detailed poster, or click on the links below to see/save/print our basic posters:

 poster 1 poster 2 poster 3

With our limited budget, it’s always difficult to reach new women, so we rely on your help to spread the word about this amazing, unique space.

Please also help spread the word by sharing comments and photos of your visit on our facebook page, or by sharing our facebook page. You could also tweet about us!

Donate to The Women’s Holiday Centre now!

Dear guests, We are on the lookout for some one who knows about Woodburners, enough to have a look at the one we have in the coach house as we have a problem with it! If you or anyone you know can help please come to the centre. Travel expenses can be reimbursed and a free stay included for your help, well worth it if you ask me! Spread the word and let’s get this sorted!
(The problem is: The flue appears not to be fitted correctly and smoke fills the room when the door is shut. We just need someone to have a look and tell us what we need to do!)


  1. I stayed at the centre many years ago ..with my daughters ..i was having some issues in my life. My stay at the centre helped me to focus and decide what to do. The environment is relaxing ,welcoming and the scenery is fantastic. The centre will always hold a special place in my heart. I hope to return one day.

  2. I came with a group of women and we had a reading weekend where we read to each other and talked about what we read, interspersed of course with walking. It was brilliant! Such a beautiful place, and lots of positive vibes seeping out of the walls from all those woman who have stayed over the years.

  3. I too stayed at the centre many years ago, and yes it was during a painful time of my life. The environment and the people I met there, that little moment (I was there for just two nights), made all the difference and I was able to leave with a clearer head. Centered and stronger. I too have always promised myself I would go back. Don’t ever close your doors ..please

  4. jasmine · · Reply

    it was simply great! had spend a weekend there! and i could feel my life coming back on track! was happier, joyful and lot more relaxed. maybe its the fact that we are living there as a community with other woman that makes it so special!

  5. Louise Hiles · · Reply

    Amazing place, in beautiful surroundings. Great place to get away from it all & back to nature, whilst the kids have fun too!

  6. Lovely place, last stayed in 1998. Will come back one day xx

  7. I have had some wonderful holidays at the women’s centre and met some great women and children. I love the relaxed atmosphere and the children mixing having fun in the garden or park, beautiful walks and the countryside is amazing !!

  8. The women’s holiday centre is something special. Not only is it unique in what it offers i,e, a women only environment but it gives a warm welcome to all in a homely environment based on sharing and co-operation. If you have never been – you have to give it a go and I tell you this much – once you have been, you’re going to keep going back time after time after time. Tell your friends and family.

  9. Alison Jones · · Reply

    Horton is an amazing place, just to watch the video brought back great memories. I brought my daughter here many times when she was young and she can still recount every time! I havent managed to get up for quite some time, but seeing the video made me realise that everyone needs some horton time and I will be making a visit soon. If you havent been then I urge you to do so, its just unique!

  10. jolene mckenzie · · Reply

    Hello i would like to know how i can book a stay with u .i have a 9yr old son who i would like to bring with.

    1. Hi there Jolene,

      To book for your stay all you need to do is give us a ring to let us know when you would like to come. You can check on our calender on the events page to see when we are fully booked or have ‘closed houses’. I am happy to say that boys are allowed to come when ever they want up to their 11th birthday, and after that we have arranged ‘older boys weekends’ that boys can come to until their 15th birthday, which you will be able to see on the calender when wanted.

  11. Sarah Collis · · Reply

    Congratulations to Cheryl who started working at Horton this week! Looking forward to visiting the house and getting some great Horton hospitality from a very special talented woman, good luck Cheryl xx

feedback box

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s