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Thread: Steep slopes and rocky terrain

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    Steep slopes and rocky terrain

    "Steep slopes and rocky terrain" possibly an extremely poorly written section in the latest version of POR up there with the swimming debacle from a few years ago.

    Our own HQ has a small section with a steep grassy slope, about 40 degree angle and 3 foot down likewise may of the surrounding footpaths/bridle paths have sections that are both steep and rocky
    Not to mention all the campsites, i cant think of any that do not have either a rocky ( or gravel ) path or a steep slope somewhere.

    While I've used it as an example in the past, Alton towers theme park is a place where we have taken Scouts camping ( via youth fundays) being a public theme park which was also the site of an accident on one of their rides, and is a reasonably sterile environment.
    Those familiar with the place will know that not only are there the theme park rides, there are also the much older Gardens dating to the 1800's these are located in a valley and you can use the paths through the gardens as a "shortcut" its also possible to use some more off the beaten track routes through the gardens as well.
    Alton Towers published a guide to the gardens as this has been the only section open at times during covid which clearly states:
    https://www.altontowers.com/media/cs...arden-tour.pdf
    Please Note: These gardens have steep and rocky areas.
    POR states https://www.scouts.org.uk/volunteers...ro-activities/
    has no steep slopes or rocky terrain ,where a slip may result in a fall (routes or areas where the average person would need to regularly use their hands at least for balance
    I've slipped in the Alton towers gardens a few times, and in some cases the slip has resulted in a fall, likewise when going through this area its necessary to use your hands/arms for balance - as its natural to do so when walking.
    So taking that as is, it appears that a hill walking permit is now required to visit Alton towers as it, and many campsites, HQs etc are now Terrain 2

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    Iím interested in the implications for scout hiking in coastal areas.

    What happens if you plan a route half a mile back from the cliff tops but the scouts take a wrong turn into a higher classification of terrain?

    How far from a cliff top do you have to be to be in terrain 0?

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    Yep and many of us pointed this out to HQ as part of the consulation ony to be entirely ignored. Its way too wooly language and open to interpration.

    Peter Andrews ESL of Headingley Pirates ESU, Group Scout Leader & Webmaster of Falkoner Scout Group
    www.falkonerscouts.org.uk

    Previous Scouting Roles
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    Wike, North Leeds District Campsite - www.wikecampsite.org.uk
    www.leeds-solar.co.uk
    Please note all views expressed are my own and not those of any organisation I'm associated with

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    No Great Tower or similar then without a hill walking permit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shiftypete View Post
    Yep and many of us pointed this out to HQ as part of the consulation ony to be entirely ignored. Its way too wooly language and open to interpration.
    I'm so glad I am no longer a Leader in UK Scouting the way the TSA is heading.
    God help those who haven't understood the full implications of the intentionally wooly, contradictory messages coming out of TSA.
    I just wonder how long it will take for a Leader who has given so much for their local community, suffer at the hands of the legal profession when TSA hangs them out to dry.

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    Emailed the info centre to see what they come back with.
    If you take it strictly as written it would mean that without mountain leader training for terrain 2, even meeting at our HQ is out of the question, as is going for a local walk/bike ride, and more as are all campsites and even theme parks such as Alton towers.

    Thinking further - if HQ dont see sense what would the media- especially the tabloid ( ie daily heil/ the sun etc) think of this?
    Last edited by Richard T; 18-02-2021 at 08:29 PM.

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    I've already posted about the footpath used by dog walkers adjacent to Horley campsite that has steps at the engine shed end as the route to the campsite is so steep and it leads to another camping area. Does that rule out using the "top area" for camping entirely?

    Biblins & Forest of dean have been mentioned especially walk from the river at symonds yat up to yat rock.

    Locally to me is white Horse hill & Uffington castle just off the ridgeway. Several steep slopes around it especially in the "moats" and walking up to it. Its under 500m, car park nearby so should be T0 but that new paragraph to me puts in in T1.

    For those near Burnham on sea what about a walk up to Brent Knoll? Definitely need to use hands at times to steady yourself and yet families happily walk up there.
    Or park at Brean Down and walk up to Brean Down Fort. Bracing on a cold windswept day and again i've been there with family and its perfectly ok but POR would now say no.

    TBH i can see the next change being AAP only of a lot of activities and thats when TSA will fold as there just isn't the money around nor enough to keep kids interested week-in week-out
    Lets hope Groups find ways of leaving with finances intact if
    Dave Ralphs
    Retiring Yarnton Scout Group (Treasurer)
    Former DofE Advisor & District Exec Member - Oxford Spires
    http://yarntonscouts.org.uk/

    I work for O2, any posts are my own personal views & do not represent O2

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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard T View Post
    Emailed the info centre to see what they come back with.
    If you take it strictly as written it would mean that without mountain leader training for terrain 2, even meeting at our HQ is out of the question, as is going for a local walk/bike ride, and more as are all campsites and even theme parks such as Alton towers.

    Thinking further - if HQ dont see sense what would the media- especially the tabloid ( ie daily heil/ the sun etc) think of this?
    I think the problem is TSA are running the movement like a corporate business, totally forgetting the Leaders are all volunteers. GSL came off last GSL's meeting with the words I hate to do it to the kids but I've had enough of this s**t!
    The straw that breaks the camel's back, has now taken another experienced, caring, skilled Leader, with their AA and NA permits.
    Either TSA are making some seriously crazy decisions or they are doing this deliberately to drive us all away. Unfortunately for the kids its working...........

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    I'm not sure who actually formulates policy in TSA, is it volunteer commissioner-type people, or is it paid people at HQ?

    This all kind of reminds me of what many parents on our village talked about a few years ago. We had a batch of kids come through scouts, I was ESL at the time so didn't really know them as scouts that well, but they were - how should I say - a unique grouping. Scouts at that point was at a bit of a low point in terms of numbers and this group with their attendance actually kind of saved the troop from stopping - for the first time since the second world war...

    Anyway, when they came up to Explorers, they seemed to do all their growing up there.

    What the parents said was, at the primary school, they had a 'nursery orientated' head. (I think I've mentioned this before). The knock on effect was, the kids coming through were being 'babied' to a far greater extent than usual, and it was showing in behaviours outside of school. It was a spectrum, young folk were all affected to different degrees, from quite a lot to not at all. But it was definitely there. Even we noticed it at scouts. We used to comment after meetings (if I was there) at some of the behaviours.

    Could it be said something similar is happening at TSA? Are the commissioners or other policy makers leaders (or otherwise involved) in younger sections? (Absolutely not doing down younger sections, but presumably you wouldn't take beavers along a cliff top path, for example...)

    Just a thought.

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    Quote Originally Posted by phil View Post
    I think the problem is TSA are running the movement like a corporate business, totally forgetting the Leaders are all volunteers. .
    Agreed. There's no appreciation that there is a big difference between running an organisation in a "business-like manner", and running it "like a business".

    Given the laws on charities, safeguarding, financial conduct, etc nowadays it's sensible and often essential to operate in a business-like manner. However when over 99% of your 160,000 staff are unpaid volunteers giving their time and skills, as and when they can and to the best of their abilities, it can't be run like a business where the staff have a choice between doing what they're told whether they like it or not, or closing the door behind them as they leave. Even more so over the last 12 months when many of the "staff" have far more important problems to worry about than Scouting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pa_broon74 View Post
    I'm not sure who actually formulates policy in TSA, is it volunteer commissioner-type people, or is it paid people at HQ?
    In this case it was down to the Safety Committee, the same ones that thought WRA for everything would be a good idea..
    Lead by Mr Hamilton, 'nuff said.
    Well it's been fun...

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    Quote Originally Posted by BenOfThe12th View Post
    In this case it was down to the Safety Committee, the same ones that thought WRA for everything would be a good idea..
    Lead by Mr Hamilton, 'nuff said.
    Supposition on my part, but it feels like this is an example of having an awkward DC writ large perhaps?

    Other than that, trust in leaders seems to have gone. By extensions, that being so, does it not also undermine the training regime which is in place?

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    Ok now we can't leave the building, even our local park has 'steep slopes' although not very deep ones, and the local campsite has very steep slopes. I suspect this isn't what they were aiming it though

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    Quote Originally Posted by nele View Post
    Ok now we can't leave the building, even our local park has 'steep slopes' although not very deep ones, and the local campsite has very steep slopes. I suspect this isn't what they were aiming it though
    And you're in one of the flattest countries in the world!

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    Quote Originally Posted by nele View Post
    Ok now we can't leave the building, even our local park has 'steep slopes' although not very deep ones, and the local campsite has very steep slopes. I suspect this isn't what they were aiming it though

    Agree, sure itís not what they intended. I asked during the consultation, and had no sensible response. And again since itís introduction and had no sensible response either. But the increased emphasis of the wording around ďyouíre only covered if you follow the rulesĒ makes you think twice about applying common sense in case you fall foul and get into a lot of bother.
    AESL

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