Hillwalking training update

Hillwalking training update

There has been an excellent response to last month’s announcement of two complementary initiatives to provide training for Hillwalking permits (see original article).

David Newton

David, the DESC for Craigalmond, is going ahead with organising a Regional residential training weekend this Autumn, similar to the successful one he organised for his District last year, to be followed by an assessment weekend with Lochgoilhead staff next Spring. There has been sufficient interest to make this viable and further applications will be welcomed with a deadline of 20 May. He gives details and asks for replies using a survey (please note, this will be live until 20 May).

Davy Virdee

Davy’s project, offering single day and evening modular training courses, is under way.  He gives details of this and invites further applications in a separate article.

DofE and other Expeditions and Terrain Permits

Davy’s article also explains some of the matters to be considered when organising expeditions in the hills – which is most of Scotland!  Bear in mind that you can also contact the Regional Adviser (DofE), John Buchanan, for advice on DofE.

Hillwalking and climbing information

Hillwalking and climbing information

The Region ran a taster training session on 30 April. Eight leaders from across the Region spent an evening with Mountaineering Instructors Davy Virdee and Martin Holland looking at the skills needed to move towards gaining a hillwalking permit.

There’s lots of demand for hillwalking training, and Davy Virdee – the Regional assessor – will now start to schedule more training events. Feel free to contact him for more information. (Photos Nikki Maclean)

Night navigation in the hills

Duke of Edinburgh and Remote Supervision

Duke of Edinburgh expeditions are common amongst many Explorer Units.

For remotely supervised expeditions in Terrain 1 and Terrain 2 a supervisory permit is required in addition to your leadership permit. To get a supervisory permit, you should have a good leadership experience in your chosen terrain and be able to draw up comprehensive supervision plans for the groups you are intending to remotely supervise. Most, if not all Silver and Gold expeditions will fall into Terrain 1 and Terrain 2.

Bronze expeditions, typically take place in Terrain Zero, and so no leadership nor supervisory hillwalking permits are needed. However, District Commissioner Authorisation is required. As part of this notification should be to produce a comprehensive supervision plan for your expedition. If in doubt, you can pass along expedition plans to Davy Virdee for advice.

Hillwalking in the Pentland and Lammermuir Hills – Terrain Zero

The Pentland and Lammermuir Hills are on doorstep of the Region – and with good planning, much of it falls into Terrain Zero (https://members.scouts.org.uk/por9.28) and as such you do not need a permit to explore them.

However, you must follow the rules which can be found here:


These include asking for authorisation and providing route plans and risk assessments.

The Regional assessor is happy to consider restricted permits to leaders wanting to take groups to the tops of hills like Lammer Law and Carnethy Hill. Please contact Davy for more details.


Davy Virdee is also Regional assessor for all climbing and other mountaineering based activities.

More Information and Contact



Hillwalking training

Hillwalking training

There are many leaders in the Region who have considered ‘going for a permit’, specifically a Scouting Terrain 1 or Terrain 2 permit, but who have found it difficult to arrange the training required.

The Region can now offer two complementary initiatives which should help with this.

Davy Virdee

Davy says: “I intend to run a few single day and evening modular training courses this spring/summer to start leaders on the path to gain the skills and experience to get a Terrain 1 or 2 permit.”

Davy, who is a professional mountaineering instructor, has outlined details as a blog on his website.  Please get in touch with him directly to indicate your interest.

David Newton

David, the DESC for Craigalmond, is planning a Regional residential training weekend this Autumn, similar to the successful one he organised for his District last year, to be followed by an assessment weekend next Spring.  He gives details and asks for replies using a survey.

For many people, the answer could be to take part in both initiatives and build experience on the way.  The two links above provide a lot of information and further links to relevant sources elsewhere.

I would encourage all those interested to check the links out and sign up as soon as possible.

John Buchanan, ARC Explorers and RA DofE, who knows how much we need more permits!



I am very pleased to welcome Mary Dick to our Regional team, as I am sure she will make a significant contribution to Adult Training.

Margery Naylor, Regional Commissioner

Message from Mary

I’ve just been appointed as ARC (Adult Training) and thought I should take a couple of minutes to introduce myself.

I grew up in the Guides, and was a Brownie, Guide and Ranger leader at different times.  I gave up when juggling my young family, work and Guides got to be too much then I became involved with the Scout Group Exec when my daughter swapped from Brownies to Cubs.  After a while I became GSL, then a few years ago I took on the ADC (AT) role in Pentland.  Around the same time I joined the Safeguarding training team, and also the team for modules 16, 17 and 18.

With my new role as ARC (AT) my goal is to make training more easily accessible to more leaders in the Region.  I have a couple of ideas about what would help but I need to understand from all of you what works, and equally important, what doesn’t work, so please do provide feedback.  One thing I know is that more trainers would be tremendously helpful.  I know there are experienced leaders and former leaders out there who have great communication skills and I would love to hear from them. As with any other role in Scouting, we don’t drop people in at the deep end.  We prefer to work in pairs anyway, and new trainers would initially work alongside established trainers.

I’m hoping to be able to meet a lot more people from around the Region over the coming months, so please come and say hello if the opportunity presents itself.

Mary Dick, Assistant Regional Commissioner (Adult Training)

Adult Training courses newly available

Adult Training courses newly available

If your training is not up to date, why not book some of the courses recently made available?  Some courses just added are:

Remember that you can book on any of the courses advertised, even if they are being held outside your District. Also remember that they are free!

Other courses that might interest you are Getting Started and Safeguarding ; also other dates for First Response.

For full information check our Adult Training page.

New Year’s Resolution

As we start 2018, could the Scouting Training Scheme feature in one of your New Year’s Resolutions?

2018 - Some options for your Scouting Training

To support adults in Scouting, the Scout Association provides a comprehensive programme of training to build on existing skills and knowledge and develop new competencies. Whether you are new to Scouting, changing role, part way through your training or have completed the training required for your role, please consider one of the following as a resolution for the year ahead.

1 Move your role from Provisional to Full

If you have a role that is currently at Provisional status then you must complete the Getting Started Training modules for your role before you can be issued a full appointment. These should be completed within 5 months of receiving your Provisional appointment. The Getting Started modules are:

For all roles

  • Essential Information (or Essential Information for Executive Committee Members)
  • Personal Learning Plan

For Section Leaders

  • Tools for the Role (Section Leaders)

For Managers

  • Tools for the Role (Managers and Supporters)

These modules are run by Districts, but you are welcome to attend any course that is convienient for you. For information on when these modules will be run please contact your ADC (Adult Training) or your Training Adviser, or check our website.

2 Complete Required Learning

If you have identified Required Learning as part of your Personal Learning Plan, then check what methods are available for completing it on the Module Matrix. If you wish to attend a course, then most modules are run regularly by South East Scotland Region and the most up to date availability can be found on the website .

3 Validate your Training

To complete any of the training required for your role, the module must be validated. Validation is the process by which you show that you can put the knowledge skills and understanding into practice in your role in Scouting. There are a number of different validation methods which you will be able to choose from. Guidance on what you can do to validate each module is given in the Leader’s Training Guide and you should agree with your Training Adviser what methods you will use.

4 Complete your Ongoing Learning

Even though you have completed your Wood Badge, there will still be opportunities to learn new skills through on-going learning. Our needs as leaders are constantly changing, so to do a good job for our young people it’s important that we are always learning and refining our skills. Leaders are expected to complete a minimum of 5 hours of on-going learning each year. These can include the required ongoing learning for First Response, Safeguarding or Safety, practical skills training or personal development. If you would like to find out more about available Ongoing Learning opportunities please speak to your ADC (Adult Training).

5 Become a Training Adviser

If you have completed your wood badge, why not consider helping other leaders with their training by become a Training Adviser? Training Advisers are a key element of the Adult Training Scheme. They provide support and guidance for those working towards their Wood Badge, helping individuals draw up and complete their Personal Learning Plans. If you think you could take on this important role then you should speak to your district’s ADC (Adult Training) and look to attend the Assessing Learning Training module.