What kit do I need?

https://www.dofe.org/shopping/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Expedition_Kit_List.pdf

This link goes to the DofE website.  The website is a really useful tool for participants and parents which covers all aspects of completing each level. The list should be used in conjunction with the parental handbook as some of the kit will be provided by Venture Out.

Silver Qualifying Expedition: Letter from Kevin at Venture Out

Dear Parent / Guardian

Your child is due to attend their Duke of Edinburgh Silver Qualifier Expedition Saturday 15th Sept to Monday 17th Sept.  I’m contacting you to confirm the arrangements.    If they no longer can attend, please let the school know ASAP as this has an impact on the viability of their group.

I will be coordinating the event and will remain in the area all the time to support the staff.  I’ll be on-duty overnight on the campsites and should be your ‘First contact’ if you need to get in touch with your child.  I’d remind you that there is often patchy signal in the area that we will be working, (possibly no signal on the first campsite and none on the second one).  You can leave a message and I’ll return it when I pick it up.  You should also not be asking your young people to be ringing you to keep them updated.  Assume ‘No news is good news’.

During the Qualifying expedition, each group will be remotely supervised by a team of 3 staff who meet groups regularly at checking in points along the way.  Staff are not allowed to walk with groups.  On most days, they will be out for at least 7 hours and be walking at least 12km and ascending about 400m.  They will carry a 13kg rucksack which needs to be big enough to take some of the group kit (tents, cookers, fuel) They will be on remote hillsides and exposed to the weather. Please ensure that they have been keeping fit and well in the run up to this event and that they have good quality waterproof jacket and rain trousers.  Please ensure they are bringing a watch – not just a clock on their phone.  They need a wrist watch to help them time their walking and is an essential part of navigating and not getting lost.

If there are any changes to medical conditions you should have them checked by your doctor and declare them to the school.

Saturday morning drop off: 9am prompt.

Errwood Reservoir Car Park (Beside dam).  Buxton SK17 6SX  (click here for map)

There is limited 4G and therefore Google maps doesn’t work.  Please download a map before setting off.

Monday afternoon pick up: 4:00pm.

Tesco Superstore,  Bridgemont, Whaley Bridge, High Peak SK23 7PB  (click here for map)

They may be later than this so please be patient and remember that if you are early you will have to wait until they are dismissed by their trainer at the end of their debrief. 

Google Maps Alert – we have had problems recently with parents getting lost on the way to the drop off / pick up because they were using Google Maps and not a dedicated SatNav or SatNav app.  Google Maps can struggle in the countryside as it relies on you receiving a 4G signal to update the map position.  Please take precautions to download that area.

Campsites

These are the campsites we are using in case you need to pick up a child.1st Night – Gradbach Scout Campsite

Peter Watson Camp Site, Old Hall Farm, Peak District National Park, Quarnford SK17 0SU

(Click here for map)

Campsite has showers.  No phone reception as this is a narrow valley.

 

2nd night – Cold Spring Farm

64 Manchester Rd, Buxton SK17 6SS

(click here for map)

Campsite has showers

 

Mobile phones

The Duke of Edinburgh Organisation recommend that we do not allow participants to have mobile phones whilst on expedition (day or night).  There are many reasons for this:

The participants are encouraged to ‘un-plug’ from the outside world and focus on becoming part of their team by socialising and supporting each other.

Mobile phones don’t stand up well to rain, mud, being crushed in pockets.  They run out of charge and there are no charging facilities on campsites.

There is patchy coverage in the countryside, and batteries die and so if you are waiting on a phone call from your young person and don’t receive it or you are trying to ring them to check on them, and they don’t call back – you get anxious for no reason.

For these reasons, we have always run and supervised expeditions in such a way that mobile reception is not required for supervision or safety:

 

Sometimes it is necessary for me to contact home if a young person takes ill or has forgotten equipment.  I have all the emergency contact details that you provided the school with and can contact parents if I need to.  You can contact me directly on 07980 306869  – please only do this if it is an emergency, and remember, I too will have patchy reception and so may not get straight back to you.

 

Thanks for your support.

 

Kevin Beattie

Programme Manager

Gold qualifying letter from Kevin at Venture Out

Dear Parent / Guardian

Your child is due to attend their Duke of Edinburgh Gold Qualifier Expedition on Thu 30th Aug to Mon 3rd Sept.  I’m contacting you to confirm the arrangements.  If they no can longer attend please let the school know ASAP as this has an impact on the viability of their group.

I will be coordinating the event and will remain in the area all the time to support the group and Assessor.  I should be your ‘First contact’ if you need to get in touch with your child.  I’d remind you that there is often patchy signal in the area that we will be working, and I may not get a message from you for hours.  You can leave a message and I’ll return it when I pick it up.  You should also not be asking your young people to be ringing you to keep them updated.  Assume ‘No news is good news’.

Each day they will be out for at least 8 hours and be walking at least 16km and ascending about 500m.  Please ensure they have understood that this event will be harder than the Gold training event they did in July.  Their fitness, equipment and food need to be good.

Drop off- 30.08.18 – Day Zero / Acclimatisation day

North Lees Campsite

Birley Ln, Hathersage, Hope Valley S32 1BR

 

DofE require Gold groups to meet their Assessor the day before their expedition starts – this is to allow the assessor to go through pre-expedition checks with the group.  Then if there are problems with their equipment or their route then they have the rest of the day to sort out the problem without it affecting the start of the expedition the following day.

 

For that reason, the group only need to be at the meet up point at 1pm on this day.  Their assessor will then do a kit check with them, go through their route plan and then take them out for a short walk to revise navigation with them.   For a meal that night the girls can walk into the local village and buy a take away or they can cook for themselves – if they cook they must remember to bring an extra evening meal and an extra breakfast for the next day.

Campsites along the route:

Night 0

North Lees farm Campsite

Birley Ln, Hathersage, Hope Valley S32 1BR

 

Night 1

Lockerbrook Outdoor Centre

Snake Pass Road

Bamford

Hope Valley

S33 0BJ

 

Night 2

Greenacres Campsite

Nether Booth

Edale S33 7ZH

 

Night 3

Hayfield Camping and Caravan site

Kinder Road

Hayfield

SK22 2LE

 

Pick up point.

Hope Car Park

Hope,

S33 6RD

Monday 5pm

 

Getting lost – we have had problems recently with parents getting lost on the way to the drop off / pick up because they were using Google Maps and not a dedicated SatNav or SatNav app.  Google Maps can struggle in the countryside as it relies on you receiving a 4G signal to update the map position.  Please take precautions to download that area.  Please also be aware that postcodes are not an accurate place finder in the countryside, they can take you to a 1km area but not necessarily to the exact point (houses and farms are a lot more spread out in the countryside).  You must check the map before you set off and print it out.

 

Mobile phones

The Duke of Edinburgh Organisation recommend that we do not allow participants to have mobile phones whilst on expedition (day or night).  There are a number of reasons for this:

The participants are encouraged to ‘un-plug’ from the outside world and focus on becoming part of their team by socialising and supporting each other.

Mobile phones don’t stand up well to rain, mud, being crushed in pockets.  They run out of charge and there are no charging facilities on campsites.

There is patchy coverage in the countryside, and batteries die and so if you are waiting on a phone call from your young person and don’t receive it or you are trying to ring them to check on them, and they don’t call back – you get anxious for no reason.

For these reasons, we have always run and supervised expeditions in such a way that mobile reception is not required for supervision or safety:

Sometimes it is necessary for me to contact home if a young person takes ill or has forgotten equipment.  I have all the emergency contact details that you provided the school with and can contact parents if I need to.  You can contact me directly on  07980 306869  please only do this if it is an emergency, and remember, I too will have patchy reception and so may not get straight back to you.

 

Any questions or advice needed before the event please email me on  kevin@venture-out.co.uk directly as it is school holidays and Ms Hickman is on holiday.

 

Kevin Beattie

Programme Manager

07980 306869

 

 

Gold Practice Expedition Letter from Kevin at Outlook

Dear Parent / Guardian

 

Your child is due to attend their Duke of Edinburgh Gold Training Expedition on 13th to 15th July. I’m writing to you to advise you of a change to the pick up point. All other information from the previous letter is the same and I will repeat below. The new pick up point is listed below. Please also ensure that you have read the letter about the critical kit that they must bring and not having it will result in yourselves being asked to bring it to the expedition area or them not being allowed to walk (e.g. boots not shoes, waterproof over trousers, asthma medication.) They must bring water proofs regardless of recent weather. It is warm at the moment but temperatures are due to drop to normal levels by next weekend. If they did not, we have ways of shortening walks, lightening bags and providing extra water. The girls need to be asked to have sun protection with them – hats, neck scarves, sun glasses. It’s better for them to bring too much and then leave some heavier/warm clothing with me in my van than to leave it at home.

 

I decided to change the pick up point away from Malham Tarn car park, where there are no facilities, to Malham village. This village will be crowded with cars but will also have mobile reception and toilets. This will enable you to come earlier and have a walk to Malham Cove and get an ice cream or food in the local hotel. It will also allow the students to get to the toilet and have an ice cream after their walk and before their drive home.

 

I will be coordinating the event and will remain in the area all the time to support the staff. I’ll be on-duty overnight on the campsites and should be your ‘First contact’ if you need to get in touch with your child. I’d remind you that there is often patchy signal in the area that we will be working, and I may not get a message from you for hours. You can leave a message and I’ll return it when I pick it up. You should also not be asking your young people to be ringing you to keep them updated. Assume ‘No news is good news’. They will stay at 2 different campsites on their walk.

 

During this training expedition, their trainer will stay with them for the first day and a half, training their navigation, group skills and campcraft to a higher level and risk assessing them. On most days, they will be out for at least 8 hours and be walking between 14- 18 km and ascending about 500-600m. Please ensure they have understood that this training is to be harder than the Silver training they attended and that their fitness, equipment and food need to be good.

 

Please ensure they are bringing a wrist watch – not just a clock on their phone. They need a wrist watch to help them time their walking and is an essential part of navigating and not getting lost.

 

Drop-off point:

Friday 13th July 9:30am

Stainforth Village Car Park

The Hollies, Stainforth, Settle BD24 9QD

Click here for map

 

Pick up point:

Sunday afternoon pick up: 5:00pm.

They may be later or earlier, please understand that they may get lost or be slower on their last day as they will not be walking with the trainer that day. (Remote supervision is required).

Malham National Park Centre

Chapel Gate,

Malham BD23 4DA

Click here for map

 

Getting lost – we have had problems recently with parents getting lost on the way to the drop off / pick up because they were using Google Maps and not a dedicated SatNav. Google Maps can struggle in the countryside as it relies on you receiving a 4G signal to update the map position. Please take precautions to download that area in Google maps in the App settings before setting off. Postcodes are not an accurate place finder in the countryside, they can take you to a 1km area but not necessarily to the exact point (houses and farms are a lot more spread out in the countryside).

 

Campsites

These are the campsites we are using in case you need to pick up a child.

 

1st night – Town Head Farm Campsite (Riverside campsite)

Cove Road

Malham

Skipton

North Yorkshire

BD23 4DJ

 

2nd Night – Kettlewell Camping

Conistone Lane

Kettlewell

Skipton

BD23 5RE

 

Mobile phones

The Duke of Edinburgh Organisation recommend that we do not allow participants to have mobile phones whilst on expedition (day or night). There are a number of reasons for this:

The participants are encouraged to ‘un-plug’ from the outside world and focus on becoming part of their team by socialising and supporting each other.

Mobile phones don’t stand up well to rain, mud, being crushed in pockets. They run out of charge and there are no charging facilities on campsites.

There is patchy coverage in the countryside, and batteries die and so if you are waiting on a phone call from your young person and don’t receive it or you are trying to ring them to check on them, and they don’t call back – you get anxious for no reason.

For these reasons, we have always run and supervised expeditions in such a way that mobile reception is not required for supervision or safety:

 

Sometimes it is necessary for me to contact home if a young person takes ill or has forgotten equipment. I have all the emergency contact details that you provided the school with and can contact parents if I need to. You can contact me directly on 07980 306869 – please only do this if it is an emergency, and remember, I too will have patchy reception and so may not get straight back to you.

 

Thanks for your support.

 

Kevin Beattie

Programme Manager

 

 

 

Urgent:this weekend Bronze Expedition

The weather forecast for this Saturday’s expedition has just gotten worse – looks like 70% probability of rain and gusts all day.  At Bronze it is common for students to forget to put their sleeping bags and clothes in rubble sacks (can be bought at Tesco, Wickes B&Q) or dry bags.  We really need that not to happen on the assessment this weekend.

You must ensure all sleeping bags and clothes are packed in rubble sacks or dry bags when they arrive and your child will need to arrive already wearing their waterproof coat and over-trousers as Assessors will need to check this before allowing them to set off in the rain.

Bronze Exped 23-24th June: Letter from Venture Out

Your child is due to attend their Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Qualifying Expedition on 23rd & 24th June, Sat and Sunday. I’m contacting you to confirm the arrangements. If they can no longer attend, please let the school know ASAP.

 

I will be coordinating the event and will remain in the area all the time to support the staff. I’ll be on-duty overnight on the campsite and should be your ‘First contact’ if you need to get in touch with your child. I’d remind you that there is often patchy signal in the area that we will be working. You can leave a message and I’ll return it when I pick it up. You should also not be asking your young people to be ringing you to keep them updated. Assume ‘No news is good news’.

 

On the Qualifier, they be out walking for 7 hours, whilst carrying their own stuff, plus the group kit (tents, cookers, fuel), roughly 13kg bags for many of them. There will be no trainer with them this time, but they will meet staff at regular points along their route (every 30-45 minutes). This is called ‘Remote supervision’ and is a requirement of the Award. Be reassured that staff are always nearby, groups are given an emergency phone with our numbers to ring if there is an incident or they are seriously lost. And my company has invested in phones that have a GPS beacon on them for locating the rare really, really lost group.

 

On the training weekend, each group had a trainer for the 2 days who will have done a learning review with them on the last day – and all students will have gone away with a list of things that they needed to do differently on the Qualifier, maybe better equipment, food, fitness or navigation. Please ask them what their individual needs were and support them in improving these areas. Please ensure they are bringing a watch – not just a clock on their phone. They need a wrist watch to help them time their walking and is an essential part of navigating and not getting lost. We have found that young people often don’t want to ask their parents to buy new/replacement stuff for them as they want to impress them with their independence and prove that they can do this. (and that they didn’t get their first choice of kit wrong).

 

Photos of the Training event are available on our Facebook page and I’ll post photos of the Qualifier here too on Sat and Sunday evenings. (click here)

 

  

Drop off and collection point

Drop off Sat: 9:00am prompt.

Pick up Sunday: 4:00pm.

Public carpark opposite Cumberland School, Beacon Campus,

Rivington Lane,

Rivington,

Bolton, BL6 7RX

 

Click here for Google map link

 

Campsites

Bibbys Farm Scout Camp Site & Activity Centre

Charnock Back Lane

Heath Charnock, Chorley PR6 9DL

Campsite has showers.

 

Mobile phones

  • The Duke of Edinburgh Organisation recommend that we do not allow participants to have mobile phones whilst on expedition (day or night). There are a number of reasons for this:
  • The participants are encouraged to ‘un-plug’ from the outside world and focus on becoming part of their team by socialising and supporting each other.
  • Mobile phones don’t stand up well to rain, mud, being crushed in pockets. They run out of charge and there are no charging facilities on campsites.
  • There is patchy coverage in the countryside, and batteries die and so if you are waiting on a phone call from your young person and don’t receive it or you are trying to ring them to check on them, and they don’t call back – you get anxious for no reason.
  • For these reasons, we have always run and supervised expeditions in such a way that mobile reception is not required for supervision or safety:

 

Sometimes it is necessary for me to contact home if a young person takes ill or has forgotten equipment. I have all the emergency contact details that you provided the school with and can contact parents if I need to. You can contact me directly on the number above 07980 306869 – please only do this if it is an emergency, and remember, I too will have patchy reception and so may not get straight back to you.

 

I will be coordinating the event and will remain in the area all the time to support the staff. I’ll be on-duty overnight on the campsite and should be your ‘First contact’ if you need to get in touch with your child. I’d remind you that there is often patchy signal in the area that we will be working, and so, if you leave a message and it is not returned immediately, this should not alarm you. You can leave a message and I’ll return it when I pick it up. You should also not be asking your young people to be ringing you to keep them updated, part of the Expedition ethos is for them to be ‘offline’ and engage with the team and experience. Assume ‘No news is good news’ and they will tell you all about it when they get back.

 

Thanks for your support.

 

Kevin Beattie

Programme Manager

 

Bronze Exped 16-17th June: Letter from Venture Out

Your child is due to attend their Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Qualifying Expedition on 16th & 17th June, Sat and Sunday. I’m contacting you to confirm the arrangements. If they can no longer attend, please let the school know ASAP.

I will be coordinating the event and will remain in the area all the time to support the staff. I’ll be on-duty overnight on the campsite and should be your ‘First contact’ if you need to get in touch with your child. I’d remind you that there is often patchy signal in the area that we will be working. You can leave a message and I’ll return it when I pick it up. You should also not be asking your young people to be ringing you to keep them updated. Assume ‘No news is good news’.

On the Qualifier, they be out walking for 7 hours, whilst carrying their own stuff, plus the group kit (tents, cookers, fuel), roughly 13kg bags for many of them. There will be no trainer with them this time, but they will meet staff at regular points along their route (every 30-45 minutes). This is called ‘Remote supervision’ and is a requirement of the Award. Be reassured that staff are always nearby, groups are given an emergency phone with our numbers to ring if there is an incident or they are seriously lost and  my company has invested in phones that have a GPS beacon on them for locating the rare really, really lost group.

On the training weekend, each group had a trainer for the 2 days who will have done a learning review with them on the last day – and all students will have gone away with a list of things that they needed to do differently on the Qualifier, maybe better equipment, food, fitness or navigation. Please ask them what their individual needs were and support them in improving these areas. Please ensure they are bringing a watch – not just a clock on their phone. They need a wrist watch to help them time their walking and is an essential part of navigating and not getting lost. We have found that young people often don’t want to ask their parents to buy new/replacement stuff for them as they want to impress them with their independence and prove that they can do this. (and that they didn’t get their first choice of kit wrong).

Photos of the Training event are available on our Facebook page and I’ll post photos of the Qualifier here too on Sat and Sunday evenings. (click here)

Saturday morning drop off: 9:00am prompt.
Charlesworth Village Green, 35 Marple Rd., Charlesworth, Glossop. SK13 5DA
They will meet their assessment team, be given their group equipment and maps and set off walking to the campsite.

Sunday afternoon pick up: 4:00pm.
Buxworth Basin, Brookside, Buxworth, High Peak SK23 7NE There is limited parking here and there is a pub car park. If you park here please go in and buy and ice cream or a coffee to keep the landlord happy. Thanks
Your child’s group may be late so please be patient and remember that if you are early you will have to wait until they are dismissed by their Assessor at the end of their debrief.

Campsites
These are the campsites we are using in case you need to pick up a child. It is the same one that they stayed at for the training weekend, but they will be walking into to it on Sat.
Linnet Clough Scout Camp
Gibb Ln, Mellor, Stockport SK6 5NB
Campsite has showers. No phone reception as this is a narrow valley.

Mobile phones
• The Duke of Edinburgh Organisation recommend that we do not allow participants to have mobile phones whilst on expedition (day or night). There are a number of reasons for this:
• The participants are encouraged to ‘un-plug’ from the outside world and focus on becoming part of their team by socialising and supporting each other.
• Mobile phones don’t stand up well to rain, mud, being crushed in pockets. They run out of charge and there are no charging facilities on campsites.
• There is patchy coverage in the countryside, and batteries die and so if you are waiting on a phone call from your young person and don’t receive it or you are trying to ring them to check on them, and they don’t call back – you get anxious for no reason.
• For these reasons, we have always run and supervised expeditions in such a way that mobile reception is not required for supervision or safety:

Sometimes it is necessary for me to contact home if a young person takes ill or has forgotten equipment. I have all the emergency contact details that you provided the school with and can contact parents if I need to. You can contact me directly on
07980 306869 – please only do this if it is an emergency, and remember, I too will have patchy reception and so may not get straight back to you.

I will be coordinating the event and will remain in the area all the time to support the staff. I’ll be on-duty overnight on the campsite and should be your ‘First contact’ if you need to get in touch with your child. I’d remind you that there is often patchy signal in the area that we will be working, and so, if you leave a message and it is not returned immediately, this should not alarm you. You can leave a message and I’ll return it when I pick it up. You should also not be asking your young people to be ringing you to keep them updated, part of the Expedition ethos is for them to be ‘offline’ and engage with the team and experience. Assume ‘No news is good news’ and they will tell you all about it when they get back.

Thanks for your support.

Kevin Beattie
Programme Manager

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