FAQ

Getting There

Car
  • The skiing facilities of the club are situated on the edge of the village of Allenheads, an ancient lead mining centre in the North Pennines. Access to the village is via the B6295 road from Allendale Town and Hexham – an excellent road which is kept clear of snow in all but the most severe of weather.
  • Our Postcode is NE47 9HW.
  • The village can also be reached from Weardale via the B6295 or from Rookhope or the Derwent Valley via a minor road. Whilst this access is easy during good weather, these roads can be closed by heavy snow and have been known, during very severe winters, to be blocked for weeks on end.
  • There is car parking on the road between the skiing area and the village, with more parking in the village itself and another car park one hundred metres up the hill beside the field.
  • But please carry a shovel – if there is more than about 10 cms of snow you will have to dig a car parking space.
  • Also be careful not to block any of the roads as you must always allow access for the snowploughs and the service bus.
Public Transport

Membership

Introduction
    To use the ski slope at Allenheads, you must be a member of the Ski-Allenheads club. Membership is open to anyone and it is easy to join on-line – see the Membership page on this website. You may also join at Allenheads – just come to the cabin at the bottom of the slope and ask about joining.
    Under the terms of our lease of the field and also our insurance, non-members are not allowed to use the ski slope.
Rates and Season
    • Our membership is annual and runs from 1st November to 31st October each year.
    • If you join before the 1st December, we offer a significantly reduced membership rate – see below.
    • Membership Rates for 2017/2018:
    • Single   £35.00                   (£25.00 before 1st Dec ’17)
    • Family  £70.00                   (£50.00 before 1st Dec ’17)
    • Junior (under 18 on 1st November ’17) £20.00            (£15.00 before 1st Dec ’17)
    • Full-time students and unemployed persons can join at the Junior membership rate as detailed above on production of a student card (Uni Smart Card) or benefits card. Photocopies will be accepted with postal & emailed applications.)
Limits and Reasons
  • We have no overall limit on the number of members but do limit to 400 the number of members who have unrestricted access to the Allenheads slope. Once we have 400 members, all additional members (“Restricted membership”) will be able to ski or board anytime midweek but only at those weekends when we feel the slope won’t be extremely busy. NB If you’ve missed out on the full membership, its still well worth joining. Based on the last 4 year’s experience, there were only 2 or 3 weekends out of the nearly 5 months+ of snow, when we would have excluded restricted members. We hope these restrictions will protect the experience on the Allenheads slope and also help keep the goodwill of the people who live in village.
  • Notice of peak weekends, which will be determined by snow conditions, will be published on the home page of this website and on the answer machine – Phone: 0191 5974 174.
  • Day Members – We currently don’t offer day membership. It was too time consuming to administer (we’re all volunteers, mainly interested in enjoying the snow, not collecting money) and it’s popularity often caused traffic chaos in Allenheads. We are looking at re-introducing day membership at some point but you will have to book on-line, in advance and numbers will be limited.
  • For more information about how to join, see the Membership page on this website.

Equipment

General
Most people at Allenheads use their own ski or boarding equipment. If you don’t have any but want to come and ski or snowboard, there are a few options:
Buy
  • Buy your own gear – there are plenty of options to buy new gear in Newcastle and club membership gets you discount at LD Mountain Centre & Snow & Rock.
  • If you have a bit more time, buy second hand on eBay or similar sites or try Swiss Tims, a local retailer who often has second hand equipment.
Equipment Loan
  • We have a selection of ski boots & skis in a good range of sizes, especially children’s sizes, which we can ‘lend’ for the day. We do however ask for a £5 donation so that we can replace gear as it wears out.
  • If you want to borrow the skis and boots, you will need to be able to pick the right sizes and set the bindings yourself. There may be someone around to give advice but we don’t have anyone qualified to set bindings.
  • We now have 3 snowboards (145, 152 and 155cm) for loan with 3 pairs of adult boots, (sizes UK 9, 10, 11) plus a Junior step-in Board.
Hire
  • We don’t have any ski or snowboard equipment to hire. The only ski hire available in the area is at the Alston Training & Adventure Centre, based at Garrigill, just outside Alston. They have about 70 sets of children’s and adult’s skis ranging in size from 110 – 180cms. They also have a limited range of carvers so advance booking is advisable. Boot sizes are from Child 13 to Adult. They have rates for day & weekend hire. For more information, contact them on 01434 381886 or see their website: http://www.alstontraining.co.uk/index.php?page=skiing

Recent Years Snowfall

Recent Years Snowfall
  • Over the last few years, our records show we have run the tows on the following number of days. With the very rare exception, we run the tows everyday there is sufficient snow for skiing and boarding so this is a good guide to the number of good snow days.
    • 2009/10 – 92 Days
    • 2010/11 – 15 Days
    • 2011/12 – 6 Days
    • 2012/13 – 30 Days
    • 2013/14 – 0 Days
    • 2014/15 – 19 Days
    • 2015/16 – 7 Days
    • 2016/17 – 3 Days

Access to field

Access, Sledges & Dogs
  • Access to the ski slope is from the track which runs alongside the wall of Allenheads Hall. There is a sign at the start of the track. Please do not come onto the field from the other gates on the road.
  • Over the last few seasons, we have increasingly used all of the field for skiing & snowboarding which means we cannot allow sledging on any part of the field.
  • Dogs are not allowed on the field. We have had recent experience of dogs biting people skiing, plus, at times, there are sheep on the field.

Where to eat/drink

Hemmel Café
    • The Hemmel Café is in the village of Allenheads, about a 300 meter walk from the ski area and is open 6 days a week (closed Wednesdays) from 10.00am to 4.00pm. The food is recommended. See their website at: thehemmel.cafe
Allenheads Inn
    • The Allenheads Inn, also in the village, is open on Saturdays and Sundays in winter from 12.30 to 24.00. Good beer and other beverages. Food is available from 12.30 to 14.30 and from 18.30 – 20.30. The Inn is closed weekdays. For more info, see: http://www.allenheadsinn.co.uk/

Accommodation

Accommodation
    • There is some accommodation available in Allenheads, either at the Allenheads Inn, or at the Old School House.Please check both before looking to stay.
    • The next nearest place to stay is Allendale, about 7 miles away, where there are a number of pubs/hotels offering accommodation.
    • If you’re happy to stay further afield, try Hexham which has a good range of hotels and B&Bs and, like Allendale, has pretty well guaranteed road access to Allenheads. Accommodation is also available in Alston and the upper Wear valley but the direct roads to Allenheads can be blocked by snow. For more information, see the Bed & Breakfast website