Bidston Observatory Artistic Research Centre is a self-organising communal study site, open to multiple different users. Stayers can book from a minimum of two nights to a maximum of one month. We offer shared accommodation and self-catering facilities for your stay. Day users are welcome too.


The building is a resource for temporary use by groups and individuals who need time to work on projects. All workspaces and living spaces are shared and negotiated with other stayers.In line with the BOARC principles, be mindful about usage and timings of spaces and conscious and considerate of other people sharing the resource. Blocking off specific rooms is not generally encouraged, and - dependant on how others would like to use the space – might incur extra per day charges.

Beyond those needed to run the project, there are no paid staff and it is up to everyone to contribute, clean up, and give care to the space when it’s needed. This is important for making the site as affordable as possible, and - in keeping with the project’s values - recognising the equal importance of all forms of labour, including the domestic. We ask that you bear in mind the scale of the building and the effort it takes to keep it open and running for as many people as possible. Please care for it as you would your own home, leave it in the best possible state for the next user, and take away anything you might bring to work on when you leave. Your agency makes a difference in keeping the space as you’d like to find it.


The ground floor is fully accessible, but there is currently no wheelchair access to the first floor, roof or basement. If you have specific access requirements please get in touch and we can send further text, audio and image-based information regarding access to and around the observatory.


BOARC is proudly kid-friendly and children are welcome, however guardians must take full responsibility. This is primarily a research site and many facilities are not specifically catered for children. Please ask questions about what works for the other stayers, and ask stewards about safety for kids whilst onsite. If you have other dependants, please ask how we can plan to accommodate for different access requirements.


Bidston Observatory has one canine resident. She is very friendly and in general pretty well behaved. If you are uncomfortable with dogs, please let us know in advance of your arrival so we can make efforts to keep her out of the way during your stay.

If you are thinking of bringing your own, please let us know. Unless they fly in through the window, animals are not usually let into sleeping accommodation to be considerate to other stayers and potential allergies.

Main staircase



Room allocation is on a first come first served basis and to be negotiated by users - unless there are specific access needs. At busy times you might be sharing a bedroom, although all have privacy curtains. It’s a great way to get to know others.

For our accountability policy, please see here

All stayers should read the values/principles page on the website before coming, and consider their alignment with the intersectional feminist values of the site.


The observatory has beds for up to 22 people (or 26 if double beds are shared). The majority of rooms are with 2 to 4 people per room. There is a family room with a cot, a dormitory that sleeps 8 people, and a single bedroom available. There is an accessible bedroom and bathroom on the ground floor.

Bedrooms are non-gendered. However, we take different awarenesses into account; if you have particular preferences let’s work out arrangements together.

Sheets and towels are provided and there are two washing machines and a dryer on the ground floor for doing laundry upon leaving.


BOARC is self-catering and users provide their own food. There is a large 24-hour supermarket within close walking distance or within a 5-minute car ride. Often, mealtimes are group gatherings and - if many people would like to cook together - this can be accommodated as we have a large semi commercial kitchen. There is a second small kitchen for use in moments when less cooking-communality is required.

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Bidston Observatory Artistic Research Centre aims to keep costs low for stayers and users.The cost per night is on a sliding scale depending on personal circumstances.

Per night, adults pay either

£30 - Standard
Paying this rate covers the cost of your stay and sustains the resource.

£40 - Funded
Paying this rate covers the cost of your stay, supports the resource and helps to make a subsidised stayer rate possible. This is the rate for those coming with a funded project or if an organisation is paying for your stay.

£20 - Subsidised
This subsidised rate supports access to the resource. There are discounted prices for longer stays. In Week Three, there is a 10% discount on all nights. In Week Four, there is a 15% discount on all nights.This applies to all stayer rates in the sliding scale. Please identify which rate applies to you at this moment in time.

Children and dependants under 16

£7.50 per night
Free - Children under 5

Day rate

It is possible to use the facilities during the day without staying over. The number of people who can use the building at any one time in this way is capped, and advance booking is essential. We ask that day users pay in blocks of 6, to reduce our tiny teams’ admin!

A block of six day uses for individuals. You are welcome to use these on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and will have access to a group calendar to allocate your own working days.

For group bookings, this is per person for one day. This is often used for away days and working visits.

How to book

Please send a brief mail to: enquiries@bidstonobservatory.org, giving a brief idea of your practice, or what you might be working on during your stay. Just a few sentences will do!

Please note when booking we require 48 hours notice before arrival.