Have you been thinking about camping but aren't sure where to go that's close to home?
How about trying something a little different, champing - that's church camping.
The Churches Conservation Trust (CCT), the national charity caring for historic churches, first piloted Champing™ in 2014 and since then has welcomed hundreds of champers each summer to stay in unique churches across the country.
The Champing™ season usually opens for guests in March, but the opening of the season was deferred. Like many charities, the trust has suffered a loss of income and hopes that reopening Champing™ will help towards its work of heritage conservation.
Head of enterprise, Guy Foreman, said: “Champing is a unique and completely different experience – it is an ‘off the beaten track’ staycation, and allows people to relax and enjoy our ancient heritage spaces.
"Champing naturally lends itself to social distancing guidelines as our churches have plenty of circulation space and each group has exclusive use of the building."
Camp beds are set up for guests inside the church, with a cosy sitting area, complete with rugs and cushions. Twinkling fairy lights and candles reflect off ancient stonework, providing a magical night-time atmosphere.
In Kent, you can champ at Church of St Mary the Virgin in Fordwich near Canterbury, which takes up to 10 people, and at St James’ Church in Cooling which sleeps groups of up to six.
Bookings for now until the end of October can be made at champing.co.uk Rates are from £49 per person, plus a 20% discount for groups of eight or more people. Under 16s get to sleep over for £1 a night.
Champing™ has been judged as Good to Go by VisitEngland.
There are options to pre-book your 'Champer hamper' breakfast of local goodies and dogs can come along too.