We have put all of our open courses on hold because of the Coronavirus situation here in the UK.
Today I have made the difficult decision to contact everyone booked on open courses with us during July, August and September to cancel those courses. We are offering everyone a full refund or the option to choose alternative dates when we are able to resume open courses. Open courses represent a big challenge in bringing people from different households together from a wide range of areas and I cannot see how we are able to do that safely in the current situation. In addition open courses tend to run at ratios of 1:4 or 1:6 and with social distancing it is difficult to see how we could operate safely at those ratios.
THE NEXT STEPS
The first stage in easing from the lockdown will be running private guiding days on a 1:1 basis or 1:2 for members of the same household. This will happen once the Welsh Government advice allows it.
Initially this will be for single day visitors only until accommodation in the area opens up again.
We will look to work with clients who we know in the first instance to be able to tailor the day to be well within their existing abilities and so manage risk at a time when we do not wish to be a burden to the NHS or the Mountain Rescue Teams.
We will continue to follow Government Guidance with the aim of being socially responsible, safe, lawful and realistic in what we are able to provide as things move forward.
Bookings during the Pandemic will be subject to revised terms and conditions where there is no financial penalty for cancelling due to ill health and where clients are asked to complete a pre-course questionnaire and bring specialist equipment with them. (Details below)
This is the most difficult element to judge as anyone reading this will understand. We have taken the decision not to offer open courses for the months of July, August and September and will be offering private guiding in this timescale when the situation allows. Open courses will be re-advertised when we are satisfied that we can run them responsibly, safely, lawfully and realistically. At the moment we don’t know when that will be. We will keep people up to date via our website, Facebook and our mailing list.
Covid 19 Revisions & Additions
Activities will require a pragmatic and mutually agreed approach between clients and instructors. Some objectives may not be feasible. The dynamic nature of being in the mountains means that there may be occasions when ideal Covid Secure practice (in, for example, social distancing) cannot be maintained e.g. to deal with an immediate safety concern that takes priority.
Clients are asked to agree to the below:
To follow relevant home nation Government guidance on Coronavirus, specifically that you will not travel to nor attend guiding/instruction with us if you should be self-isolating according to national guidelines. Guidance on the specific symptoms and self-isolation measures are clearly available on the Welsh Government website.
To only attend your booking if you can answer the following questions with the word “No” immediately prior to your course:
Now, or at any time in the last 14 days:
Do you have/have you had a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)?
Do you have a/have you had a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)?
Do you have or have you had a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal?
Are any of your household symptomatic of COVID 19 or have any of them been?
Are any of your household self-isolating or have any of them been?
To the best of your knowledge have you been in close contact with anyone else who is symptomatic of COVID 19?
To answer the following with the word ‘Yes”:
Do you accept that your participation in the booked activity may increase your risk of exposure to infection with the virus relative to no-participation?
Do you agree to inform your Instructor should you develop any symptoms consistent with COVID-19 any time within 14 days of the end of the activity? The Instructor undertakes to do the same.
Please confirm that you will bring:
A small bottle of hand sanitiser
A face mask or covering with you in case it is required.
Appropriate clothing for the activity
Drink, lunch, snacks.
Sunglasses and sun cream, midge repellent (as appropriate)
A small personal first aid kit (plasters, painkillers, medication, nitrile gloves)
Any specialist technical equipment you need for the activity you have booked (map, compass, mapcase, harness, helmet, belay device, rock shoes, nut key, climbing rack etc.)
If you have any questions about the make, model, age or appropriateness of equipment please do contact us directly to ask questions.
If your booking needs to be cancelled for Coronavirus related reasons by either party you will be offered alternative dates or a full refund of your course fee.