Festival Site Updates
June 5, 2020
Information about arrangements
Hello, and please accept my apologies for the silence about arrangements for the Feast of Tabernacles in Torquay, Devon, this year.
The good news is that the hall at the Imperial Hotel was booked and a deposit paid well before the COVID-19 lockdown occurred here in England. The hotel opens for accommodation reservations on July 4, if you decide to stay on site.
If you click here you will be taken to a form to fill out so we can plan, as much as possible, for the correct numbers for services and for tours. If this does not take you to the information page, please copy the following into your Internet browser: https://cogwabi.wufoo.com/forms/x1codrby13detlg/.
The UK government has not completely worked out a path forward, so we have some challenges that we hope will be cleared up well before the Feast. Current requirements are explained by the BBC website at https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/explainers-52530518.
For all attendees:
- The meeting room at the Imperial Hotel can take 300+ people in normal theatre-style seating.
- What size will it take if social distancing is needed? We currently have plenty of space for those who have indicated they wish to keep the Feast in Torquay.
- Most hotels, including the Imperial Hotel, and other establishments are open for booking accommodations on July 4. Be sure to ask about refunds in case you are not able to attend.
- Tours will be planned based on the prevailing circumstances for use of coaches, and whether the lockdown has completely finished by the Feast.
- At present, there is a 14-day self-isolation period for all coming into the UK, with possible exception of Europeans.
- Flights are limited, although more are being arranged. We do not know how ticket prices are being affected.
There are probably many things we would all like cleared up about the way in which we will be able to keep the Feast. As additional updates are available, we will provide them by email and on our Feast Facebook page, as we had last year.
The lovely waterside Imperial Hotel in Torquay, England, will again host the Feast of Tabernacles in the United Kingdom. The Torbay Suite, overlooking the bay, provides a wonderful setting for services and fellowship. In addition to services, the following event are planned:
- As 2020 is the 400th anniversary of the departure from Plymouth of the Pilgrim Fathers, we plan to include a visit to the docks in Plymouth from where they set sail.
- We will also return to the legendary castle ruins of Tintagel, where King Arthur may have ruled in the A.D. 500s.
- We'll offer a couple of group meals in the oldest pub in Torquay, The Hole in the Wall, which has been serving meals and drinks to smugglers and businessmen since around 1540.
- Popular last year and included this year will be a river journey followed by a steam train in the South Devon region.
Torquay is part of the Devon coast often referred to as the English Riviera. The four-star Victorian Imperial Torquay is where we will have services and is where we encourage those attending this Feast site to stay to enjoy meals and fellowship in the plush and relaxing environment. There are, however, accommodation options within easy walking distance of the hotel.
Services will be in the Regency Room for the first two services, then in the Torbay Suite. These are both conveniently in the hotel, and have large sea-view windows. The rooms hold a maximum of 150 in attendance.
The standard rooms at the Imperial are pleasant but may not have a sea view. For a modest additional cost you can have a sea-facing room where you will be rewarded with an ever-changing view of the bay. Spread over seven floors, this hotel has 152 stylish and comfortable bedrooms. They have, among other facilities, comfortable beds, plumped-up pillows, en suite bathrooms and complimentary Wi-Fi.
Those accepted for the U.K. site will book directly with the hotel staff using the reference "COGWA," who will verify the booking against a list of those accepted to the site. So please make sure you are accepted before trying to book. If you have any special needs, please discuss them with the reservation team.
Here are the standard rates per room:
- Standard Room: £89 (US$117) 2-adults, B&B
- Standard Room: £129 (US$170) 2-adults, B&B and dinner
- Family Room: £129 (US$170), B&B (children’s breakfast charged as taken)
- Family Room: £169 (US$223), B&B and Dinner (children’s dinner charged as taken)
Supplements to upgrade;
Standard sea facing £10 (US$13) per room, per night.
Deluxe double room (sea facing) at £30 (US$40) per room, per night.
Deluxe family or king room (sea facing) at £40 (US$53) per room, per night.
One-bedroom suite at £80 (US$105) (sea facing) per room, per night.
Two-bedroom suite at £100 (US$132) (sea facing) per room, per night.
Rooms at the above rates will be subject to availability.
Additional information about self-catering accommodation nearby will be provided upon request. There is also a camp site about two miles away where caravans can be hired.
Arrivals and departures
Exeter Airport is 25 miles from Torquay. Flights arrive from Paris, Dublin, Edinburgh, London, etc.
Torquay is a three-hour drive from London, although if you decide to fly to Heathrow, National Express bus travels to Torquay for about £20 ($26) per person.
Plymouth is one hour away by car and also has many places of interest to visit.
We look forward to welcoming you to Torquay!