Adventurous Activities Permit Scheme

Adventurous Activities Permit Scheme

Adventurous activities are a key, fun and inspiring part of Scouting. From a young person getting their first experience of being afloat in a canoe to a trekking expedition through the peaks of Nepal, they provide valuable experiences, lessons and memories for all of those involved. Our role is to ensure the young people get the opportunities for these positive experiences in a safe and fun environment.

Adventurous activities are:

  • archery;
  • caving;
  • climbing and abseiling, except bouldering;
  • climbs using auto belay systems (systems that lower a climber to the ground without any human intervention);
  • hill walking and off-road cycling (in Terrain One and Two);
  • hovercrafting;
  • snowsports (except artificial slopes and nursery slopes);
  • all water activities, except swimming, on class B1, B2, B3 or A waters;
  • all motorised water activities and SCUBA activities on class C waters

The adventurous activity permit scheme is an internal competency-based assessment scheme designed to ensure that all those leading adventurous activities for young people within Scouting have the skills, experience and personal suitability to do so.

For full details of the Activity Permit Scheme and which activities are covered – visit the The Scouts website for more details.

The person who grants a permit is your Commissioner. This will be your District Commissioner if you have a Group or District appointment, and your Area Commissioner if you have an Area appointment. When they grant a permit, it will be recorded on Compass and this is the definitive record of whether you have a permit and exactly what it covers.

A Commissioner can only grant a permit on the recommendation of an assessor. Please get in touch with the Assistant Area Commissioner (Activities) to arrange an assessment if you need one. It is possible to use a suitably qualified external assessor, but it is worth checking that the person you use has the right qualifications.

It is always a good idea to discuss your wish to have a permit with your GSL / DC before applying for the permit. You can also talk to the Assistant Area Commissioner (Activities)/

Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Howard Nelson, Assistant Area Commissioner (Activities) at if you would like to chat about any aspect of activities or permits.