“The British Mountaineering Council recognises that climbing and mountaineering are activities with a danger of personal injury or death. Participants in these activities should be aware of and accept these risks and be responsible for their own actions and involvement.”
Although the climbing centre is an artificial environment the risks involved are no less serious than when climbing outside on a crag or mountain. There is an additional risk that bolt-on holds can spin or break.
The soft flooring under the bouldering walls is designed to provide a more comfortable landing for climbers falling from the bouldering wall. THE SOFT FLOORING DOES NOT MAKE THE CLIMBING ANY SAFER. Broken and sprained limbs are common on this type of climbing wall despite the soft landing. Uncontrolled falls are likely to result in injuries to yourself or others.
Climbing beyond your capabilities on any wall is likely to result in a fall. Any fall may result in an injury despite the safety systems in place to avoid it. You must make your own assessment of the risks whenever you climb.
Our Duty of Care
The rules of the climbing centre set out below are not intended to limit your enjoyment of the facilities. They are part of the duty of care that we, as operators, owe to you, the customer, by law. As such they are not negotiable and if you are not prepared to abide by them then the staff must politely ask you to leave.
Your Duty of Care
You also have a duty of care to act responsibly towards the other users of the centre. Statements of ‘Good Practice’ are posted around the centre adjacent to the relevant facilities. These describe the accepted methods of use and how customers would normally be expected to behave towards each other.
Before you climb without supervision the centre expects you to be competent in the use of a safety harness, a suitable knot to attach a rope to the harness and a belay device to secure a falling climber or lower a climber from the wall using a rope. You are required to register to say that you know how to use the equipment, that you are prepared to abide by the Rules below and that you understand the risks involved in your participation.
Anyone who has not registered is classed as a novice and must not climb without supervision.
Unsupervised climbing is just that! Staff will provide whatever help and advice they can, but instruction in the use of equipment or climbing techniques will only be provided where it has been booked and paid for in advance. If you are not confident in the use of any climbing equipment or technique then do not attempt to use it without the supervision of someone who is competent to do so.
An adult who has registered at the centre may supervise up to two novice climbers as long as they are prepared to take full responsibility for the safety of those people. Groups of three or more novices must only be supervised by an instructor holding the relevant Mountain Training qualification.
ALL children in the centre must be supervised by an adult unless they have been assessed by the management and registered for unsupervised climbing.
- Report to reception on each visit before you climb
- You must exercise care, common sense and self-preservation at all times
- Report any problems with the walls, equipment or other climbers’ behaviour to a member of staff immediately
- Be aware of the other climbers around you and how your actions will affect them
- Do not distract people while they are climbing or belaying
- Stand well back from the climbing walls unless you are belaying or spotting a climber. Never stand directly under someone who is climbing
- We reserve the right to ask you to use a harness provided by the Centre if we feel that your harness looks old or unsuitable
- Spectators are prohibited from entering the climbing areas
- The abseil platform is out of bounds unless you are part of a planned instructor based abseil group
- Climb within your own limits
- Many of the climbs in the centre have top ropes already in place. Do not take them down to use on other routes
- Do not use your own ‘quick draws’ to lead the top rope walls
- When using the lead walls you must supply your own appropriately rated dynamic rope. Do not use the centre’s top ropes for lead climbing
- Running belay attachments (runners) are already provided at intervals on the lead walls so you do not need your own ‘quick draws’. You must clip all the runners on the route you are climbing
- Always use a belay device attached to your safety harness with a locking karabiner. ‘Traditional’, or ‘body’ belaying is not acceptable. Self-belaying is not permitted
- The attachment points on the floor are provided to give support to people belaying a climber who is much heavier than they are. Direct belays from the attachment points on the floor are not acceptable
- Always pay attention to what the climber is doing
- Always stand as close to the climbing wall as is practical unless you are using one of the attachment points on the floor. Sitting or lying down are not acceptable
- The tall walls are designed to be climbed using a rope for protection. Solo climbing is not acceptable on these walls. Always use a rope to protect yourself on these climbs
- Always use a safety harness to attach yourself to the rope
- Always tie the rope directly into the harness using a re-threaded figure-eight with double stopper knot. Clipping in with a karabiner is not acceptable
- Do not carry phones, cameras, wallets, coins, keys etc when climbing, they may fall and hurt other people
- Always climb within your capabilities and descend by down climbing or at the very least a controlled fall. Never jump from the bouldering walls.
- Never climb directly above or below another climber
- Topping out on any of the bouldering walls is strictly prohibited
- Helmets, harnesses, food and drink or any hard objects are not permitted in the bouldering areas at any time
- Only spot a partner if you understand how to spot correctly, or ask a member of staff if unsure