Silver Qualifying Expedition

See below for the letter from Kevin at Outlook.

Tel: 07980 306869 | Email: kevin@venture-out.co.uk |

Web: www.venture-out.co.uk

Dear Parent / Guardian

Your child is due to attend their Duke of Edinburgh Silver Qualifier Expedition Saturday 16th Sept to Monday 18th 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. Please ensure that they have been keeping fit and well in the run up to this event. 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: 9:30am prompt.
Dove Stone Reservoir Car Park
Greenfield
Oldham OL3 7NE
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@53.5295928,-1.9820489,16z

Monday Afternoon pick up: 4:30. They may be later than this so please be patient and remember that they have to do a debrief with their assessor after they arrive.

Tegg’s Nose Country Park
Buxton Old Rd, Sutton, Macclesfield, Cheshire SK11 0AP
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/Tegg’s+Nose+Country+Park/@53.256318,-2.076051,15z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0xdad515d9d2aac45f

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:
Postcodes only – please be aware that postcodes in the countryside are for a far larger area than in a city. You will need to check a map before setting off and bring a map with you.
Google Maps and not a dedicated SatNav or SatNav app. Google Maps can struggle in the countryside as it relies on you receiving a 3G or 4G signal to update the map position. Please take precautions.

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

Boarfold Scout Campsite
Far Woodseats Lane, Chisworth, Charlesworth, Derbyshire. SK13 5RS.
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/Boarfold+Scout+Campsite/@53.4304491,-2.0201845,15z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0xc546cf3be17c0e2f

Seven Springs Guide Camp
Corks Ln., Disley, SK12 2AZ
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@53.3538396,-2.0246516,16.75z

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 the number above – 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