Information for unit leaders

The Club runs fun/taster sessions and badge training courses in our own boats afloat in the Harbour from mid April until mid September.

Full instruction is given by fully qualified volunteer Instructors holding the necessary Activity Permit and authorisation from both the Guide and Scout Associations. Session provision is always contingent on availability of our Instructors and boats. Our boats undergo regular certified safety inspection. 

Up to 30 young people can be accommodated in up to 4 boats (larger numbers require double-banking or splitting the session) but this number depends on the availability of boats and Instructors. Each session gives more than an hour afloat.

At least one responsible adult or Leader from the unit must accompany and take charge of the group ashore and be in attendance throughout. This adult must bring along contact details for next-of-kin for all participants, as required by Scout Association and Girlguiding rules. The attached parent/carer Consent Form may be used if required. When afloat or undergoing instruction, leadership responsibility lies with the Club's lead Instructor.

Changing, toilet, shower and kitchen facilities are available at the Club Boathouse at the Benjamin Perry Scout & Guide Water Activities Centre, Phoenix Wharf, off Lower Guinea Street, Bristol BS1 6TJ (see location page).

Units should report at the Boathouse at the time arranged. Passengers can be dropped off at the Wharf itself but parking on the Wharf must be arranged with the lead Instructor. Public parking is available near the Boathouse on Redcliffe Parade.

What we expect from participants. PLEASE do share this information with them!

1. Participants should be members of the Scout or Guide Sections or older.

2. They and participating Leaders/adults must be able to swim 50 metres in ordinary clothes and keep afloat for five minutes, bearing in mind that they will be wearing a (supplied) buoyancy aid. At the discretion of Instructors, one non-swimmer wearing a full life jacket (supplied) may form part of each boat crew.

3. Parents/carers should know that although there have been no instances in Bristol Harbour for some years, Weil's disease remains a risk. Please ensure that cuts and abrasions are covered by waterproof plasters (see advice sheet).

4. Those attending should wear old clothing (no jeans) and bring a wind/waterproof coat, a jumper and sun/rain hat, as appropriate for the weather. Soft-soled shoes should be worn and spectacles secured. A change of clothes might be useful. A buoyancy aid will be provided. Mobiles and precious items should be left ashore in our secure storage.

5. Instructors will have boats ready for use on arrival and will first give basic instruction and a safety briefing. Afterwards, young people will be expected to help put boats and oars away. No one must leave the site without permission from the lead Instructor and the accompanying unit Leader/responsible adult.

6. We are content to row in light rain but not in high winds with novice crews. If weather conditions look bad, ring the lead Instructor whose contact details you have been given by the Booking Secretary. When booking, include a contact mobile number for the intended accompanying Leader/adult in case of cancellation.

 Finally - water sports are potentially dangerous, so GOOD DISCIPLINE AND GOOD BEHAVIOUR must be maintained, both on and off the water. The public's perception of our Movements will be influenced by what is seen.

Version 5.  RS Jan 2014