Updated 10th August, 2020
We apologise for this lengthy document but ask you to take the time to read it.
The aim of this information is to let you know what steps we are taking, and to tell you what we expect from you, in order to ensure your safety, our safety and the safety of all our guests. This information is based on legislation, guidance and advice from the government and hospitality sector resources.
We have completed a Covid-19 secure risk assessment and acted upon the results.
Some of the policies in this document are temporary changes to, or in addition to, our standard Terms & Conditions and may override them if appropriate.
Please read all the information below to enable you to make an informed decision as to whether or not this is the right time for you to stay at Blair Lodge.
Before leaving home you should recheck the information here as it may have been updated.
Before you book
Although government advice has changed slightly, regarding the use of public transport, if you have to isolate you must be able to return home using private transport only. For this reason we request that you delay plans to travel to Combe Martin if you can only do so by public transport.
We strongly recommend that you research a suitable holiday insurance policy that will cover you if, for any reason (Covid-19 related or otherwise) you have to cancel your holiday, cut your holiday short or extend your stay.
Information about extending your stay due to illness is in “During your stay / What if you have Coronavirus symptoms”.
There are circumstances which may occur that will mean you are unable to stay in the room you originally booked (e.g. if another guest is isolating in that room). We will attempt to contact you, as soon as possible, to inform you if a change is necessary, and if this is not acceptable to you, you will be able to change the date of your visit to another available date before the end of the 2021 season and any monies already paid will be transferred to that booking. If you choose to take the alternative accommodation offered you will be charged at the price of that accommodation, or the price of the accommodation original booked, whichever is lower.
In order to maintain social distancing in the dining room, and to have rooms available if we need to accommodate guests in another room if necessary, only 50% of our rooms will be available to book. We may be able to accommodate a larger booking. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01271 882294 for further information.
If you have any particular needs, e.g. because you are visually impaired, please contact us before booking.
By continuing to make a booking you are agreeing to our policies. You are also agreeing to follow our rules as well as government guidance and advice including, but not limited to, that for social distancing, minimal surface contact and regular hand cleansing.
Before your visit
You must not come to Blair Lodge if you, or anyone in your household, have any Coronavirus symptoms (e.g. cough, temperature, loss of taste or smell, runny nose or sneezing, feeling or being sick, diarrhoea or loss of appetite) or you have been told by NHS Test & Trace to self isolate or are self isolating for any other reason.
We will request a deposit of £25 per adult for all bookings. This payment should be made by bank transfer or by debit or credit card via telephone if at all possible. Cheques are only acceptable if received by us at least 28 days before arrival.
If, for any reason, you need to cancel your booking after this payment has been made, you will be able to transfer your deposit to another available date before the end of the 2021 season.
If, for any reason we are forced to cancel your booking (e.g. if we have to isolate or there is another lockdown) you will be given the option to transfer your booking to another available date before the end of the 2021 season or to have your deposit refunded. Our liability would not extend beyond this refund.
We are advised to minimise chip & pin payments where possible and, for this reason, 14 days before your arrival, we will request a remote payment (i.e. by bank transfer or by debit or credit card via telephone) to cover accommodation and dinners (if booked). This must be received by us at least 7 days before your arrival date. We cannot accept cheques for this payment. Additional costs incurred will be charged, by contactless card payment where possible, before your departure. More information on this below.
If, for any reason, you wish to cancel after this payment is due, you will be able to transfer your booking to another available date before the end of the 2021 season.
If, for any reason we are forced to cancel your booking (e.g. if we have to isolate or there is another lockdown) you will be given the option to transfer your booking to another available date before the end of the 2021 season or request a full refund. Our liability would not extend beyond this refund.
If, for any reason, other than because you have to isolate, you choose to return home part way through your visit you will be liable for the cost of the full duration of your booking and any additional costs you have already incurred.
Information about charges if a guest does have to isolate is in “During your stay / What if you have Coronavirus symptoms”.
If, for any reason, you have to return home part way through your visit because we are forced to close (e.g. if we have to isolate or there is another lockdown) you will be refunded for any accommodation nights or meals, already paid for, that we are unable to provide minus additional charges already incurred, such as drinks. Our liability would not extend beyond this refund.
In order for us to welcome all our guests with a safe and efficient registration process the information requested in bold must be provided before arrival.
Check in time is between 4pm and 10pm. Please provide an expected time of arrival. In order to avoid the possibility of a queue forming, we may ask you to change your arrival time slightly. If, for any reason, you will not be able to arrive close to your ETA please contact us on 01271 882294 to update us.
To comply with the Legislation for Tourist Accommodation we require the full names and nationalities of all guests over the age of 16.
All non British, Irish or Commonwealth citizens must provide passport number and place of issue (or details from other suitable photo identification) and details of their next destination (including address, if known). Please bring this form of ID with you as you must be able to produce it if requested.
Names and contact telephone numbers are also required for Test and Trace purposes.
We will also need to know if anyone in your party has any allergies or dietary requirements.
Before your reservation can be accepted we must have a declaration from you that you have read and understood the contents of this document.
We will only be able to provide dinner if booked a minimum of two weeks in advance. Dinner at Blair Lodge, for the rest of the 2021 season, will be one of a choice of two starters, a set main course and one of a choice of two desserts or a cheeseboard. A list of the main courses for each day of the week will be available to view on our Food page. You must let us know if you require a vegan or vegetarian meal when booking so that we can offer a suitable alternative.
While travelling you should avoid service stations and other crowded areas where possible. If you do need to visit a service station the wearing of face coverings is now mandatory.
Face coverings must be worn in enclosed public spaces in England. Those who fail to do so could be fined up to £100.
We are obliged to remind guests that they should be prepared to remove face coverings if asked to do so by police officers and staff for the purpose of identification.
Before leaving home, please check the Coronavirus information on our website, www.blairlodge.org.uk , as it may have been updated.
It is your responsibility to ensure you are aware of the latest government advice which is available at www.gov.uk/coronavirus .
Please leave one car parking space between cars where possible.
If you arrive early you are welcome to leave your car in our private car park while you explore the village or beach or just stretch your legs. Please ring the front doorbell to inform us before you go and return to check in as close to the agreed ETA as possible.
When checking in, please ensure the hallway is clear before entering and if necessary wait outside until it is.
The first thing that we will ask of you is that you use the hand sanitiser in the inner hallway as soon as you enter. Please do this every time you enter the building. Face coverings are mandatory inside the building except in your room or at your breakfast, dinner, or bar table. It is not compulsory for staff to wear face coverings but we will do so where appropriate.
During your stay
While you are staying at Blair Lodge you must inform us immediately if you have any Coronavirus symptoms, you have been contacted by NHS Test and Trace or you have to isolate for any other reason.
Please be considerate of others at all times by following the rules and advice including that for social distancing, minimal surface contact and regular hand cleansing.
It is mandatory to wear face coverings in corridors and other public areas. Please bring them with you as we will not be able to provide them.
When returning to Blair Lodge after a day out please check that the hallway is clear before entering. Priority should be given to people exiting the building. You should, at all times, be aware of others in the hallways and on the stairs and wait patiently for them to move on rather than passing too closely.
Adults visiting Blair Lodge are fully responsible for any children accompanying them and should ensure that the children practice social distancing, minimal surface contact and regular hand cleansing. Whilst in the building children should be with a responsible adult at all times.
It is important for you to know that we have the right to evict a guest (or guests) at any time if they do not follow rules or advice and therefore, in our opinion, they are risking the safety of others. In the unlikely event that we are obliged to do so, you will be liable for the cost of the full duration of your booking and any additional costs you have already incurred.
There are notices in communal areas and bedrooms to remind our guests of the rules we must impose. Please take a moment to read them (they’re very brief, honestly) and reread them at intervals throughout your stay.
If you need to contact us at all during your stay, please try to do so by telephone or text. This will help to avoid congestion in the hallway. The contact numbers will be displayed in your room, along with our WiFi code and other important information.
To avoid the possibility of spreading infection and the need for additional cleaning, takeaway meals cannot be consumed on the premises.
If you have takeaway food, sandwiches, drinks etc. while you are out for the day please dispose of your rubbish responsibly. If you cannot find a bin please bring it back with you and use the wheelie bin in our car park and remember to use the hand sanitiser when you enter the house.
We pride ourselves on the cleanliness of Blair Lodge. Even so, there are additional measures that we must put in place during this outbreak to minimise the risk of spreading infection. These measures mean that some changes have to be made to the way we operate. We hope that you will be patient and understanding. The health and safety of all our visitors is paramount.
We will ensure that frequently touched surfaces in communal areas, such as doors, door handles, hand rails, light switches etc. are cleaned and disinfected on a regular basis throughout the day.
As well as regular and more intensive cleaning of communal areas there will be other changes to the housekeeping processes in your accommodation.
The following changes have been implemented to minimise the possibility of cross contamination.
- Tea bags, instant coffee, UHT milk, sugar and biscuits will be provided.
- We will no longer leave a supply of cotton wool pads, cotton wool balls, cotton buds or shower caps in the rooms but these will be available on request.
- We will continue to supply tissues and toilet roll.
This will help to cut down on waste as unused items will now be disposed of after each room is vacated.
- We will continue to provide hand soap/shower gel/shampoo
- Spare blankets or pillows are available on request.
- We will continue to provide one hand towel and one bath towel per person and one bath mat per room. These can be replaced after two days for guests staying four or more nights.
- Cushions have been removed from bedrooms.
Spare bin bags will be in the bottom of the bins in your bedroom and bathroom. If you need your bin to be emptied during your stay please tie up the bag and leave it outside your bedroom door after breakfast. A bin will be provided in the landing for guests to dispose of clean, recyclable items, flattened where possible.
To comply with the government’s guidelines all rooms will be left vacant for at least 24 hours between each occupancy period. An intense cleaning program will take place before the next guest arrives. If a room has been occupied by a guest with suspected or confirmed Coronavirus the vacant period will be extended to at least 72 hours before cleaning takes place. Again this is in line with government advice.
Unfortunately, we will not be able to provide a daily housekeeping service as we have in the past. Additional supplies of tea, coffee etc. will be replenished at breakfast and used glasses, cups and spoons will be replaced if brought to your breakfast table.
Guests staying for a period of six days or more will have the option of a room cleaning service approximately halfway through their stay (provided they are not in isolation). Those staying eight days or more can have room cleaning and bedding changed, if desired, approximately halfway through their stay (provided they are not in isolation). Guests must not be in their room during cleaning.
Meals and Drinks
You will be allocated a table which will be yours for breakfast (and dinner, if applicable) throughout your stay. Please do not touch, sit at or place personal items on any other table in the dining area.
Please do not place personal items such as guide books, mobile phones, wallets or handbags on tables, windowsills etc. in the dining room or other communal areas.
All drinks will be provided as table service only (including outside).Do not approach the bar. A Bar List & Wine List will be available on request. Glasses etc. should be left on the table for us to collect.
All meals will be provided as table service only. Meals will be ordered in advance and a Bar List & Wine List will be available on request. To avoid unnecessary contact, tables will be cleared after breakfast/dinner service has finished. Please leave everything on your table. Additional table space is available for this purpose.
Please ask a member of staff if you require additional napkins, coffee, ketchup etc. Do not help yourself.
A breakfast order form will be in your room on your arrival. Please complete the form and leave it on the bookcase in the landing for collection by 9 pm. At breakfast, hot food and drinks will be brought to you when you are ready but everything else you need should already be on your table. Guests staying for more than one night will have the opportunity to change their order for subsequent days if they wish.
During breakfast we will ask you to choose your starter and/or dessert for that evening (if applicable).
Shared toilet facilities
People who have mobility difficulties will be permitted to use the downstairs toilet if required. Please inform us if you have used this facility so that steps can be taken to clean, as soon as is practical, for the benefit and safety of others. Single use hand towels and a bin for their disposal will be provided.
Before you leave we will ask you to pay additional costs incurred during your stay, such as drinks (or puddings you didn’t think you’d have, but did), by contactless card payment if possible. If these costs are over the current £45 contactless limit you will be able to pay by chip and pin. The payment machine will be covered in plastic which will be cleaned or replaced after use. Please note that we will not be able to accept cash or cheques and will only provide invoices or receipts if requested.
Our payment machine is in the dining room near the door. To avoid close contact in this area we ask you to wait patiently, at your table or in your room, until it is convenient for us to take your final payment. If you need to pay a balance, and are planning to depart before or during breakfast, we can arrange a mutually convenient time for you to do so.
What if you have Coronavirus symptoms.
- You must inform us immediately (by phone if possible).
- You must request a test. (Test and Trace will contact you with your results by telephone or email.)
- If you have acute Covid-19 symptoms, have breathing difficulties or your life is at potential risk, seek medical help immediately.
- If you are due to leave you should do so as planned. You should only travel by private transport and only drive yourself if you can do so safely. If you cannot reasonably return home (e.g. because you are not well enough to travel or do not have the means to arrange transport) you must isolate in your room while you wait for your test results. While you remain in isolation at Blair Lodge any meals and drinks will only be available as room service. You must follow government guidance on dealing with possible Coronavirus (Covid-19) infection. This also applies to anyone you are sharing your room with and any other guest in your ‘household’ or ‘bubble’.
- When you return to your main residence you should continue to follow government guidance on self-isolation, household isolation and social distancing.
- If you are confirmed to have Covid-19 you, and the rest of your ‘household’, must return home if you reasonably can. You should only travel by private transport and only drive yourself if you can do so safely. If you cannot reasonably return home (e.g. because you are not well enough to travel or do not have the means to arrange transport) your circumstances should be discussed with an appropriate health care professional and, if necessary, the local authority. While you remain in isolation at Blair Lodge any meals and drinks will only be available as room service. You must follow government guidance on dealing with confirmed Coronavirus (Covid-19) infection. Once you have returned to your main residence you should continue to follow government guidance on self-isolation, household isolation and social distancing.
- If you test negative for Coronavirus you can come out of isolation and continue with your stay as planned.
A holiday makers information sheet from Devon Council, about what to do if you develop symptoms of Covid-19 while you are away from home, will be in your room. This includes details about how to request a test.
If you have to return home before you are due to leave, because you have symptoms, you will be liable for the cost of the full duration of your booking and any additional costs you have already incurred.
Any extended stay at Blair Lodge, because you or someone in your ‘household’ have suspected or confirmed Coronavirus and you cannot return home, will incur charges. Accommodation and breakfast will be charged for all additional nights in your room. Other food and drinks will be charged for as provided. While you remain in isolation at Blair Lodge any meals and drinks will only be available as room service. You will also be charged for two further nights accommodation unless you receive a negative test result from NHS Test & Trace before departure.
The additional two nights accommodation charge is because we are unable to clean a room for three days after it is vacated if an occupant has had suspected or confirmed Coronavirus.
To avoid unnecessary contact and minimise risks to other guests these additional payments must be paid by card, via telephone, before departure.
What if another guest has to isolate.
Each room (or booking if for a group, travelling together, in more than one room) is considered to be a ‘household’. We have procedures in place to maximise the protection of our guests and additional procedures to follow if a guest is symptomatic or has tested positive for Covid-19.
If you choose to leave earlier than planned because a guest not in your ‘household’ is symptomatic, or for any other reason, you will be liable for the cost of the full duration of your booking and any additional costs you have already incurred.
Before you leave
When leaving your room on your departure day
- open a window,
- tie up any used bin bags (this time leave them in your room)
- and lock the bedroom door behind you.
- Please do not strip the bed
Before you exit the building
- drop your room key in the receptacle provided at the bottom of the stairs
- and pay any outstanding balance.
Having read the information above we sincerely hope that you will still want to visit Blair Lodge and we look forward to welcoming you (no hand shakes or hugs though!). Despite this mammoth document we are sure the changes will not detract from your enjoyment at Blair Lodge.
Carol Ann & Sue