Things to know about Yorkshire Friends Holiday School

What is YFHS?

Holiday School is a week-long residential Quaker event for 13-18 year olds in Yorkshire. Most participants come from Yorkshire and Ireland, but we welcome young people with a connection to Quakers from other places too.

In recent years, we have had about 80 people attending, including 16 volunteer staff.


It is the people who make Holiday School. We nurture an inclusive environment where everyone feels welcome. We accept and appreciate each other as individuals and don’t need to pretend to be anything other than ourselves. We hope to leave everyone who comes to Holiday School with a feeling of belonging. Often, lifelong friendships are formed, and the wider Holiday School community is worldwide and multi-generational.

I found understanding, patience and have never laughed so much in my life


Holiday School has a fully timetabled week. We explore themes and topics that tend to resonate with Quakers. We invite external speakers to share their experiences and to open up and challenge our thinking. For example, over the years we have sessions from an international Asylum Seeker charity, a marine Biologist, and various actors and writers. Sessions are inspired by Quaker testimonies and values, social justice issues, peace, faith, environment, and how to navigate a complex, changing world.

In small groups we're encouraged to share ideas, listen and consider action if needed.

It's like another world at the perfect time in my life"


We have lots of fun! We get to know each other through a range of activities such as sport, crafts, discussion groups, video making group, and of course the long running The Rag newspaper… (never letting the truth get in the way of a good story). There are lots of opportunities to be creative and try something new.

We have evening socials with games and dancing, and other one-off events through the week with continual laughter, creativity and joy.

It’s the best, most magical week of the year

Reflect and connect

Holiday School is time away from your normal day-to-day life. The week is full, thought-provoking and fun. We find moments for quiet reflection, Music, silence, readings and other moments of magic help build an appreciation of these opportunities for stillness.

Holiday School is a break from real life; a hole in the ground in the middle of a storm. It’s revitalising and safe. Void of judgement, it’s a quick place gather your thoughts and energy


The Holiday School was held in 1933 at Ackworth School. It was started to give young people who couldn't attend Quaker boarding schools, an opportunity to experience what it was like to learn alongside other Quakers. Over the years the event has evolved from classroom based lessons to the interactive, mixed activity event we run now.

They are the family I would have chosen...