Winter Shelters 2016/17
Cold weather and winter shelters
Cold weather shelters provide free basic accommodation during the coldest winter months, usually December to March. They are a good option if you aren’t entitled to claim benefits. They don’t charge you to stay and food is free. Many are run by faith groups, but you don’t have to be religious to stay.
To get a place you may need to be referred or contact directly the shelter.
Please check each shelter’s admission requirements
You will sleep in a communal area of a church hall or day centre on a camp beds or mattress. Sleeping bags and basic toiletries are provided. The smallest shelters sleep 10 people each night. Larger shelters may sleep 30 people or more.
Cold weather shelters want you to feel you are in a safe place when you stay. They often have rules that say that don’t allow people to stay if they are drunk or abusive. Make sure you arrive on time to be let in in the evening. You won’t be allowed to stay at the shelter if you arrive too late.
The shelter will be supervised during the night usually by volunteer staff, who will be on hand to provide company and support. The shelter staff may also be able to give you help with finding more permanent accommodation. You will have to leave early the next day after breakfast and take your belongings with you.
Use the Homeless UK website to search for all cold weather accommodation in your area.
This listing may be updated as the winter progresses and more information becomes available about some of the shelters.
The winter shelters are listed under the boroughs in which they operate, so some appear more than once. Crisis at Christmas operates a service across London, and is included as the first entry. Some boroughs are not listed at all – Housing Justice may be able to advise on projects operating in these areas.
Please click link on church-led winter night shelters in Wales. These provide emergency accommodation to homeless people during the coldest months of the year and work in partnership with local authorities and homeless agencies. There are currently four such shelters operational in Wales – in Newport, Cardiff, Swansea and Merthyr. They take their inspiration from a night shelter model from Newham in east London where for 20 years different churches have accommodated different homeless people for different nights of the week during the winter months.
Please forward any info of any Winter Shelters to firstname.lastname@example.org
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