“Candle Conferences are, in my opinion, the best there are. They are run by Peter and Charlotte Vardy. I have been taking students to Vardy conferences for the last 25 years, originally when Peter Vardy was one of the speakers with others, and not his own show. He always stood out as the best, and not a year goes by without a trip or two…now of course, GCSE trips too. You can’t beat them, in my books.” Save RE Facebook Comment


Candle Conferences is committed to keeping our events Accessible, Enjoyable AND Affordable. 


Candle is run by teachers for teachers; we keep prices low by not employing all the back-room staff that commercial companies rely on.  Please use e-mail as your primary method of contact – and note that we may take a couple of working days to respond, especially at busy times and during school holidays.  Office hours  – other than on conference-days or during School Holidays – are Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 8.30am – 1pm.  If you have booked and need to contact us on the day of an event, please e-mail and/or use the mobile number supplied on your confirmation e-mail.






It may be easiest for students to buy their tickets individually online, e-mailing you their e-tickets as proof of purchase so you can then send copies to us to book your accompanying teacher tickets.  This avoids you having to use ParentPay or similar sites, which charge schools a fee which must be added to the cost of the trip.



OR, EMAIL info@candleconferences.com


NB: Invoiced tickets cost £25 (A Level) and £17 (GCSE) to reflect the additional administration and risk associated with these bookings.  Our best prices are available for online bookings, which can be made quickly and securely using a credit or debit card. 


Terms and Conditions of Booking



Because of venue health and safety restrictions, we reserve the right to refuse entry to our events to people without tickets.  Please ensure that you have obtained and printed out your e-tickets before setting out for an event.  



Candle uses international companies Ticket Tailor to process online bookings and Stripe to process secure online payments.  We cannot access and do not store any card payment details ourselves and other personal data is held securely in-line with our Data Protection policy below.


When you purchase tickets online, your places are confirmed immediately and an e-ticket will be e-mailed to you with the details of the event, confirmation of payment and a QR code to print out and bring on the day to register and gain access to the event.  A map, detailed directions, session-timings etc. will be sent out in a “reminder” e-mail a week before the event.


Subject to your school policies, you may ask A Level students to buy tickets online directly from us, sending you their e-mail confirmations as proof of purchase and to speed-up registration.


  • When you have all the confirmations, simply e-mail a list to info@candleconferences.com and we will then authorize your free accompanying-teacher ticket(s), make sure that we communicate with you in the first instance and prepare your resources to be collected as a group when you register with us.
  • This approach avoids the chore of having to collect or reclaim money and the additional charges made by systems such as Parent Pay… as well as the delays this always causes.



If your school insists on an invoice and wishes to pay by BACS, please note that payment must be received by us before places can be confirmed and e-tickets sent out.  Because of the typical 60+ days that finance departments take to process invoices, please book as early as possible.


  • We hold invoiced tickets for 30 days only pending payment and after that, if payment has not been made we reserve the right to release the tickets to other schools.
  • If your finance department requires a purchase order number or authorization code to be on invoices, please obtain this now and add it to the form below to avoid delays.


  1. Student tickets include specified conference resources, which may also be provided to one or more teachers subject to availability.  We reserve the right to provide the student resources in a digital format when bookings are made in the late booking period, although we make every effort to avoid doing this.
  2. We offer FREE accompanying teacher places (an “accompanying teacher” is defined as bringing 5 or more students from the school they teach at) within reason and subject to the availability of space!  If a teacher attends alone, or with fewer than 5 students, we usually count it as INSET and charge that fee for the teacher.  If there are particular reasons why this seems unfair in your case, please contact us to discuss them.
  3. We provide light refreshments for teachers at break and lunchtime but students should always bring a packed lunch, snacks and a drink. Students may bring pocket money to buy snacks from vending machines or local shops, but we cannot guarantee that there are suitable machines or shops within a practicable distance of all the venues. Please ask us for details of your venue if this is a concern.
  4. We now use Ticket Tailor to manage bookings for all our events.
    1. If you book online you will receive an e-mail with an e-ticket featuring a QR code – please print your e-ticket(s) and bring with you to the event, to check in with.
    2. If you send us an invoice request through the form on this page, we will send your e-tickets by e-mail as soon as payment clears with our bank – when you receive the e-mail please print out your e-ticket(s) and bring them with you to the event, to check in with.
  5. Please note that we cannot send out tickets in advance of payment being made, and reserve the right to refuse entry to events to people without tickets, so please allow ample time for your invoice request to be processed and, if in doubt, pay by card online to receive your confirmed tickets immediately.
  6. We keep to advertised timings at our events and cannot wait for latecomers or finish early to accommodate trains etc.  In most cases doors will open for registration at 9.20am and the conference will begin promptly at 10am; it will finish by 3.30pm. For London events, because of Off Peak train times, we open the doors at 9.50am and conference sessions begin at 10.30am.  London Conferences will conclude shortly before 4pm.  We reserve the right to refuse access to the event until a suitable break in the programme, to avoid other people being disturbed by latecomers.  We ask that attendees plan unavoidable early-departures carefully, with a mind to other groups’ concentration.
  7. Please allow ample time to reach the venue, register, hand out your “tickets” and get students properly seated. Candle cannot be responsible for there being sufficient seating for your students to sit together if they arrive late. Groups will be asked to fill the venue from the front and will not be allowed to “save seats” for latecomers.
  8. We do not permit anybody to eat or drink in the halls, except when specific announcements to the contrary are made at lunchtimes – and then we ask for your support in making sure that bins and recycling facilities are used.
  9. We cannot accept responsibility for the personal belongings of students (or accompanying adults/teachers) at our events. Ideally, students should not bring valuables or large amounts of cash with them to events:  Mobile telephones, music devices, games consoles etc. will have to be switched off in any case!
  10. We do not allow any audio or video recording in the halls during the events.  We ask for your support in enforcing this please. We provide extensive resources to support the sessions in other ways.  We are happy for photographs to be taken during and after the event, so long as others’ learning experience is not affected.
  11. We tweet during events @puzzlevardy and encourage students to engage with us and other schools in this way, subject to your own policies on social media.
  1. We prefer online bookings and credit or debit card payments.  This gives you (and us) immediate confirmation and avoids weeks – sometimes months – of messing around with school finance departments, which often let organizing teachers down.  Credit card companies also provide you with some consumer protection.
  2. Depending on school policies, it might be appropriate, more convenient and cost-effective for you to ask students to book their tickets online directly, each paying with their own (or parental) card details and forwarding their e-ticket e-mail to you as proof of their booking before a set date.  This avoids you having to collect funds and them having to pay the extra charges that some “parent-pay” type systems charge.
  3. If you ask students to book directly with us through ticket-tailor, please remember to e-mail us with a list once all the bookings are made (so we can approve your free accompanying-teacher ticket(s) and ensure your resources are ready and parceled together).  You just check in by showing us the printed student e-tickets in the normal way.
  1. Fill in and send the invoice request form on this page if your school prefers to pay by cheque or BACS and you need an invoice (with purchase number).
  2. If your school requires a purchase order number to be on the invoice, please fill this into the invoice request form field.  If there is no purchase order number, fill in 0000.  Chasing purchase-order numbers later takes a long time and causes delays, which can result in places being lost.
  3. We cannot accept invoice requests made verbally over the telephone or in a general e-mail or by post to avoid later confusion.
  4. Please ensure that you have the authority to book before filling in the invoice request form and check with your line-manager if you are in any way unsure of the school or college policies on trips, visits and purchasing.
  5. We will respond to your invoice request by sending a .pdf to the finance e-mail address that you provide on the request form within 3 working days.  After this time, please check with the finance officer that your invoice has arrived and is payment-pending.  There have been occasions where confusion has resulted from an incorrect e-mail address being filled into our form for example and checking avoids confusion and disappointment.
  6. We hold the requested tickets for 30 days following receipt of an invoice request form, taking the request in good faith as a promise to pay for these tickets.  If we do not receive payment after 30 days, we reserve the right to release the tickets to other purchasers.
  7. If schools request invoices which are not paid within 30 days more than once we reserve the right to refuse any further invoice requests and accept online card payments from that school only.
  8. If you have to make an alteration after an invoice has been rendered but before it has been paid – such as to change numbers – we reserve the right to charge an administration fee of £5 per alteration.  Please try to minimize confusion by not filling in the invoice request form until you are absolutely sure of the details!
  10. E-tickets will not be sent out until payment is received in full. We reserve the right to refuse entry to our events to people without tickets.
  1. If you wish to make a general enquiry then please contact us by e-mail or telephone us rather than using the invoice request form on this page.
  2. Filling in the invoice request form on this page will be taken in good faith as a commitment from your school or college to pay for the requested number of tickets.
  3. Submitting the form will be taken as written confirmation that you have the proper authority to make a booking (on behalf of your school or college) and that you (on their behalf) accept liability for the full cost of the non-refundable tickets you book this way.
  4. We cannot accept manual bookings over the telephone or by e-mail under any circumstances.  This is to avoid confusion and disappointment.
  1. Like theatre or cinema tickets, bookings are normally non-refundable, unless the conference is cancelled by us.
  2. Please understand that this means that we will not normally issue refunds or cancel invoices in such cases as… student or teacher illness or bereavement, student driving test appointments, exams or trial exams, inclement weather (except where the whole conference has had to be cancelled), management refusing permission to attend, for whatever reason and including as a result of OfSTED inspection.
  3. In all cases treat your purchase of tickets for our events as you would the purchase of tickets for any other event – theater, cinema, concert etc. once tickets are bought, they are bought.
  4. In exceptional cases and at our discretion, we might offer a voucher to spend at an alternative event as a good-will gesture when tickets are not able to be used.
  1. Students may only book individually online for A Level events, using a credit or debit card.
  2. We assume that where payment is made in this way either it has been made by a responsible adult on behalf of the student or that a parent/guardian is happy for the student to book tickets etc. on their own behalf.
  3. To be clear, we can take no responsibility for supervising or safeguarding students who attend without adult supervision and we reserve the right to request signed letters of consent from parents/guardians if we have reason to believe that sixth form students under the age of 18 will be attending alone.
  4. We do not accept any individual student bookings for GCSE events.
  5. We may accept bookings from a parent, guardian or other responsible adult wishing to bring one or more students to our events, in which case the accompanying adult(s) must attend throughout and act as an “accompanying teacher”, taking full responsibility for the young people in their care.  Refreshments and separate resources will be provided if the accompanying adult is bringing 5 or more paying young people, but not otherwise.
  1. We are able to advise about access to the various venues we use and about the availability of hearing loops.
  2. We can provide printed resources and power-points a couple of days in advance where this will facilitate enlargements being made etc, r can provide printed resources in a digital format where this is appropriate.
  3. Where an assistant is needed for a student to access the event, such as to push a wheelchair or guide a partially-sighted student, we are always happy to accommodate the assistant without charge and provide refreshments as needed.
  4. In all cases please let us know when special access arrangements might be necessary and we will do our utmost to help.
  1. We have staff who know most of the venues well, have experience of organizing school trips (of writing risk-assessments and filling in other paperwork) and who are happy to help and advise teachers where we can – please e-mail or telephone us.  Please note that this advice is to be used as a guide only, is not legally binding and can never be a substitute for the supervising teacher going through the risk-assessment process for themselves.
  2. We do not provide generic risk-assessments for venues as we are advised that this could render us liable if these prove to be inadequate or if a teacher uses generic assessments as a substitute for their own assessment processes.
  3. Candle accepts no liability for students who are not supervised by a qualified or related adult at our conferences, nor for any personal belongings or valuables, nor for any additional costs incurred in travelling to or from the events.
  4. Candle reminds teachers that they are responsible for students in their care while at the conferences and that they must exercise proper supervision at all times. This includes (but is not limited to)
    1. Maintaining an accurate register of those present and being aware of the whereabouts and welfare of students throughout the day, according to their school’s agreed policies.
    2. Maintaining a list of contact numbers for students, other members of staff, the school and parents/guardians and providing accurate “live” contact details for the lead teacher to Candle, so that we can communicate with your group should it be operationally necessary.
    3. Maintaining a list of relevant medical conditions and being properly informed of how best to deal with a medical emergency arising from a pre-existing condition in one of their students.
      Informing Candle staff of any issues we should be aware (e.g. recent bereavement in the case of sessions on Life after Death) of in presenting the sessions before the beginning of the day.  We will try to make adaptations, including facilitating a student discretely stepping out of part of a session, if possible without damaging the learning experience of others.
    4. Being present for the fire-briefing at 10am and ensuring that students know what to do and where to go in case of a fire alarm or emergency. Conducting a prompt registration for the party in the case of a fire-alarm or other emergency and informing Candle Conferences and/or venue staff of any missing persons, ensuring that students’ behaviour is appropriate and does not interfere with others’ learning or enjoyment or cause actual or potential damage to the venue
    5. Briefing students to switch off the sound on all mobile devices, including tablets and laptops, and not to record audio or video footage of the conference or to post material relating to the events online.  We are on Twitter and invite students (and staff) to tweet @puzzlevardy if they must during the day!
  5. Please note that we reserve the right to pass on any costs or charges with respect of damage to the venue or others’ property, including excessive littering, to schools should it be clear that one or more of their students was responsible for such damage.
  1. Candle reserves the right to change advertised venues (within the specified city/area) up to 14 days before a conference – but will always keep you abreast of any issues that there might be affecting your event.  Please ensure that you provide us with accurate contact-details for the lead-teacher who will attend the conference so that we can communicate any last-minute issues with them.
  2. Candle reserves the right to alter session details, guest speakers and resources without prior warning if operationally necessary. Candle will not be responsible for issuing refunds or covering any additional costs schools and/or students incur as a result of changes to the programme.

The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is the most significant piece of European privacy legislation in the last twenty years. It replaces the 1995 EU Data Protection Directive (European Directive 95/46/EC), strengthening the rights that EU individuals have over their data, and creating a uniform data protection law across Europe.

As a Data Controller, Candle will comply with applicable GDPR regulations when they take effect on 25th May 2018.

In all cases, the person with responsibility for compliance with GDPR is Charlotte Vardy, Managing Director.

1. Direct Marketing Data

We have built our postal marketing database from publicly available DfE records (the most reliable open source available).  Our mailshots are directed to the Head of Religious Studies rather than to any individual teacher.

If you would like a copy of any information we have relating to your school, or would like to opt-out of receiving postal communications from us (maximum 6 times per academic year) please contact us

We do not buy other postal databases or take part in bulk mailings to schools.

We do not sell or otherwise communicate our database in whole or in part to other parties, other than communicating minimal data to our mailing company Send Marketing Solutions in advance of mailshots.  They have their own GDPR compliance procedures as Data Processors.

We engage in digital marketing through Social Media (FaceBook and through them Instagram, as well as Twitter) but have no access to individuals’ details as part of this.  If you are concerned about seeing our Social Media adverts, please check the Privacy settings on your Social Media accounts and/or unfollow us.

2. Data Collection, Retention & Use Policy

When you book an event with us, we use the address, e-mail address and telephone contact numbers you supply us with to inform you about the event you have booked, including by passing on resources from that event.  We are permitted to communicate in this way under the GDPR regulations, because this is necessary to fulfill our contract with you.

We do not ask for any personal details of students you bring to conferences, just the number of students.  This is so that we do not hold personal data relating to those under the age of 18.  Because of this, we require accompanying teachers (or parents/guardians) to maintain responsibility for their students while at our events.

The only time we would have the name and school of somebody under 18 years old (but over 16 years old) would be if they book directly with us via Ticket Tailor, in which case they have to use a card to pay, normally that of the Parent or Guardian. In addition, we do not market to under 18s in any way, so students are usually made aware of our events by teachers.  Consequently, if an A Level student books directly with us via ticket tailor we deem it to be with the permission of a parent or guardian, following direction from their school.

We do not ask for age details of customers, so customers under the age of 18 who have booked directly with us could not be positively identified as being under 18 from records held by Ticket Tailor.

We do not accept direct bookings by students under the age of 16 years old and ensure this by not publicising this option in relation to GCSE events.

As part of the booking process, we now ask for your explicit permission before using your direct name /job title and e-mail address details to market future events.   If you give us this permission, your details will be added to our marketing database.  You can ask us to remove your details at any time – just contact us.

Our marketing database is password protected and access to it is limited to three individuals within our business, all of whom understand our policies and the importance of GDPR compliance.

During events, we sometimes use Socrative to offer online quizzes.  In these cases, the app has its own terms and conditions for GDPR compliance as Data Processors. Specifically, students are invited to enter a name in order to participate in the quiz, but this would be a first name only and they could not be identified from this as there are no other personal details entered or stored by the app. We always offer an off-line alternative for any students who object to using apps or who do not have a Smart Phone.

3. Online Data Processing

Candle uses the online ticketing platform Ticket Tailor as our Data Processor for all bookings, meaning that your personal and financial details are kept secure by a third party.  Our access to the data held by Ticket Tailor is password protected and limited to two individuals within Candle Conferences for use in the event check-in process and to forward resources.  https://www.tickettailor.com/gdpr/

We also use Mail Chimp to manage e-mail marketing campaigns in relation to those who specifically consent to receive marketing materials in this way.  Mail Chimp has its own Date Processing policies which are GDPR compliant.  You can, of course, ask us to remove your details from Mail Chimp at any time.

4. Financial Data

We use STRIPE (events) and PAYPAL (books & resources) for online payments, which means that we have no access to your financial information when payments are made by card and that card numbers etc. are kept securely by industry-leading companies, with their own policies for GDPR compliance as Data Processors.  We do not ask STRIPE or PAYPAL for any information about you and they only collect what is necessary to process the payment.

If you request an invoice, we ask that it is paid securely by BACS transfer or by Cheque. In either case, we do not store your financial data and have no access to it.  Our bank is HSBC and is the Data Processor for this sort of financial transaction.

5.  Images & Feedback Comments

Candle reserves the right to take photographs at and capture video and/or audio of our events and to use photographs, video and audio within marketing materials online and in print.  We also reserve the right to use any feedback comments or testimonials that you give to us in writing, whether by e-mail, social media posts or on feedback forms, within marketing materials.

To protect your privacy, we do our best not to identify who is in pictures and attribute comments in such a way that you cannot be directly associated with them, unless you give us permission to publish your name or post your pictures/comments publicly on Social Media.

Be aware, however, that Facebook and other Social Media companies use clever facial recognition software and may “tag” people in photographs used online, depending on their own privacy settings.

If you (or a student) objects to their image / words being used by us then please contact us and we will do our best to remove anything that offends.

“I have been taking my students to Peter and Charlotte’s courses (both A Level and GCSE) for many years now and continue to find them invaluable. They are supremely well organised, timed to perfection and  invaluable to students.  The courses are stimulating for staff and students alike, packed with pertinent and relevant examination material as well as ideal for stimulating extension thinking  and pushing students to consider the wider implications of Ethics and Philosophy.  My only regret is I can’t take all the Sixth Form as part of their wider education.”


Catrina, Deputy Headteacher


E-MAIL: info@candleconferences.com

TELEPHONE: (0)208 133 2241

(Office open term-time only, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday 8.30am-1pm)


We regret that we can only accept final bookings made in writing: this is to avoid any confusion that may arise when people book over the telephone.

More Events for GCSE and A Level Religious Studies with Dr Peter Vardy

FAITH has been specially designed to enrich and extend Year 13 students’ learning and covers topics specified by ALL ENGLISH EXAMINATION BOARDS for the full A Level (Year 2 study) in Religious Studies, but also relevant for those studying towards CIE PreU and IB Diploma options Read more»

HAPPINESS has been designed to support your Year 12 students and covers topics specified by ALL ENGLISH EXAMINATION BOARDS for AS Level / A Level Year 1 Study in Religious Studies, but also relevant for those studying towards CIE PreU and IB Diploma options. Sessions will cover… Read more»

Our brand new GCSE event for 2019 CREATION has been designed to enrich and extend your Year 10-11 students and covers topics specified by ALL EXAMINATION BOARDS as part of the Christianity and Thematic Studies modules.  Reference will also be made to Islam and Judaism… Read more»

Adding value to education

CPD events for teachers at venues across the UK and online, including occasional residentials, plus Bespoke training from whole-staff or departmental INSET to individual coaching.

A day for Gifted and Talented Year 10s, a sixth form enrichment day on financial awareness or a governors’ day on ethos… we can arrange a Bespoke Event which adds value to your curriculum.

Ready to book a conference with Candle Conferences? Buying conference tickets is easy and secure using a credit or debit card now, or send an invoice-request to our team…