Making Memories… Giving Hope

CHICKS to sell Moorland Retreat in Brentor, Devon

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It is with complete and sincere fondness for the hundreds of memories made and childhoods changed at our retreat in Brentor, Devon that we  today announce that our 'Moorland Retreat' is for sale.

The eight-bed property was placed on the market in January following a period of careful consultation between our staff and the Board of Trustees.

We halted the delivery of respite breaks for vulnerable children and young people from our Moorland Retreat in April 2017, after making the decision to consolidate the provision of breaks from our other retreats.

Despite our fundraising efforts remaining steady, increased costs and the required investment needed to ensure that the Moorland premises are suitable for both the provision of breaks and as an office space for staff have meant that we have been unable to reinstate the provision of breaks from this site.

As a result, we made the difficult decision to place the property on the market.

CHICKS Chief Executive Andrew Dean explains: "We stopped providing breaks from Moorland in April 2017, and in May 2019 our fundraising and administrative staff moved to an office in Buckfastleigh, a moorland property that nods to our heritage, but with greater accessibility and functionality for our staff, and, crucially, lower running costs."

The Moorland Retreat from above

While these changes have occurred, we have been exploring various options for how best to proceed with our Moorland Retreat.

"Because of the investment required to bring the facilities up to the standard required by us as a charity," Andrew continues, "we have made the difficult but necessary decision to sell the property.

"Over the last year, we have taken careful steps to ensure that the sale of the retreat is in the best interest of the charity, and that all potential value of the property is maximised.

"Brentor Parish Council was informed of our decision in December 2019."

We are keen to reassure all those who have referred children to CHICKS, or benefitted from a break themselves, that we are committed to providing breaks for children from Devon and the South West in the future.

Andrew adds: "Our Young Person's Hub is currently accepting applications for children to attend CHICKS breaks in 2020, and is keen to hear from anyone who knows a child living in difficult circumstances who would benefit from the chance to make happy memories and build their confidence."

Together with our additional retreats in Cornwall and Derbyshire, Moorland has changed the childhoods of more than 16,000 vulnerable children and young people from across the UK since 1992.

View of Moorland from the garden

"For many years, Brentor and the Tavistock community have given children who are in desperate need of a respite break a place to sleep soundly, play safely and make positive childhood memories," says Andrew.

"We are extremely proud to be a part of this community – you are among our most fierce ambassadors and supporters, and not for one moment do we take that for granted.

"The memories of hundreds of happy days spent in Brentor make us who we are – they are the foundation upon which we are built."

Our commitment to providing respite breaks for future generations of the UK's most deprived and vulnerable children and young people is stronger than ever.

Andrew concludes: "While we continue to serve children from your communities, the South West and the UK with respite breaks, we ask that you please continue to support us in whatever way you can; children and young people across the UK need CHICKS' services perhaps now more than ever.

"It is our duty as an organisation to adapt to the needs of those we support, putting steps in place to ensure that we're here for their future. We hope that you'll join us as we continue this journey."

The Moorland Retreat barns

We need to raise £1.8 million this year to continue running our respite breaks. If you're able to help with this effort in any way, please contact our Fundraising Team by calling 01822 811 020 or emailing info@chicks.org.uk.

For more information about the sale of our Moorland Retreat, please visit chicks.org.uk/moorland.

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