Crossing the Bridge

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Fri 22Nov
Sun 24Nov

Rites of passage for men

Facilitator: Nicholas Clements

This retreat uses creativity, mindfulness and physical activities to enable men to challenge their own self assumptions about what they can achieve and how they can be seen in the world. A specially created programme which enables participants to see and appreciate how much they have achieved, and encourages a commitment to the future, even if it is unclear and uncertain.

Event time: Fri 22nd Nov at 6:30pm - Sun 24th Nov at 4:00pm

At a glance

  • Men are offered the space to explore their relationship to their own masculinity and power
  • Participants are encouraged to be open, frank and share with each other their fears and aspirations
  • A joyful and thoughtful space, full of activities like music, storytelling, imagination and magic.

What participants will gain

  • A chance to tell personal stories to other men, and most importantly listen to each other
  • An opportunity to take time out, restore and reconcile relationships to the feminine and women
  • Time for an exploration of nature and the ecology of the land

From the Friday evening through to Sunday afternoon the men are encouraged to drop down into themselves, supported by activities which distract them from their everyday struggles and concerns. These include drawing, painting, making music, mindfulness and storytelling. This can be challenging for many men who have had their creativity mocked, dismissed or ignored.

During this process, the men are able to develop their own relationship to Hawkwood, as an eco-system, and an environment full of compassion and forgiveness. By sharing their stories, and importantly listening to each other, we facilitate transition into the next stage of each individual’s life. A key is to recognise that we have all tried our best and that we need to explore those parts of ourselves we have dismissed and suppressed.

We allow the men to create altars and ceremonies to acknowledge their wholeness and incompletion. To honour themselves, their ancestors and their future ancestors. To recognise they need to ‘do it anyway, despite knowing it will never be finished.’ To comprehend their indebtedness to themselves, their families, and nature itself. This is liberating, and very valuable when they return to the ‘normality’ of their lives.


Price Options

£290 Single
£250 Shared
£210 Non-residential


12 available

Practical Information

Please note that prices are listed per person.
Residential options are fully inclusive with all meals provided. Non-residential options include suppers, lunches and all refreshments and exclude B&B.
If you would like to camp please enquire about camping options and prices.
Please bring waterproof clothing, boots, hats, gloves.
Notebook plus three meaningful items, eg picture or objects that represent the past, the present and the future.

Nicholas Clements

Nick is a perpetrator of wildness. He was initiated and named ‘The Beloved Outlaw’ by the Samburu tribespeople of northern Kenya. He has spent all his working life in the company of damaged and vulnerable people. ‘A story-teller, shaman, film-maker, rites of passage elder and healer, who lives on the edges of the mainstream, weaving his wisdom and courageous questioning into creative projects and workshops for those seeking wholeness and meaning that is radically real and down to earth.’ - Shakti Sundari
Nick has created bespoke masculinity rites of passage for individuals and groups all over the world. Seeking to be a bridge, between the messages and fragments left for us by indigenous peoples, and the need to make rites of value and relevant to today. He facilitates one-to-one work, workshops and talks, as well as being the author of a trilogy of seminal books on masculinity and rites.

Herewood Gabriel

When Herewood’s father died early in his life it set a precedent to find a deeper meaning to existence. This wish was fulfilled when, after studying Illustration at college, he joined a monastic community. For the next fourteen years he combined his art with Jungian archetypes, Gurdjieff work, environmental campaigning and deep inner work. After the community he was committed to continuing living a deeper and more sustainable life. He has since invented and sells a divinatory and co-operative board game based on his archetypal understanding. Now he is teaching his soulful art method, doing commissions, making giant lanterns and being a carer for an autistic young man.

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"I am hugely respectful of your knowledge and expertise what an exceptionally brilliant and gifted human being you are. It was a privilege to be in your company."

- Participant on previous Crossing the Bridge residential

"I was fortunate enough to see this amazing man at a recent day event. His talk was completely inspiring. Nick is such a lovely man, gentle, down to earth, understanding and caring. He has so much wisdom he is happy to share with us. I highly recommend this day with Nick."

-Jackie White, Positive Living Group, Southampton