COVID-19

Following current guidance from Public Health England WE ARE CLOSED.

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COVID-19

COVID-19 Statement - last updated 19th March 12.39

We will review the Government's daily briefing. Should the guidance, advice or legislation change we will update this statement and our position.

Following advice from Public Health England and to support the incredible national effort to beat the Corona Virus Mendip Activity Centre will be closed to schools and groups from 5pm Friday 20 March until further notice.

We are a local, independent, family run business. It has taken us over 30 years to organically grow to where we are today, and our incredible team are all part of our extended family. Whilst the centre will still be here and open for much needed adventure once things return to normality, there is currently very little government support for our team who will all be on substantially reduced hours and pay. We plan to keep a skeleton team on site to support our customers during this unprecedented lock down period; please bear with us as we won't be able to respond to all enquiries as quickly as we would like.

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The current situation regarding COVID-19 is totally unprecedented, and our normal terms and procedures do not accommodate the nature of this situation.

To enable a fair and reasonable solution for all our customers in this fluid and unprecedented situation our position with each customer will be flexible and dependant on the latest information. We will work closely with you on a case by case basis to find suitable dates to accommodate your booking in the future.

Ultimately, we want to work with you to find a solution that provides a sustainable outcome for everyone. We are very aware that without compromise there could be lasting and impactful consequences well beyond the duration of the virus.

We will hold all payments and deposits on file and the team will discuss with you the best solution for your school or group as soon as we have more information on the likely duration of this disruption, government fiscal support and insurance terms.

We need to ensure we are here and ready to support you beyond this global pandemic. Outdoor education will have an even more vital role to play for education and leisure. We will be intrinsic in connecting people with nature, driving the physical and mental wellbeing agenda, raising attainment in a whole range of education provisions and supporting people to develop essential transferable life skills after what will have been a very challenging and difficult time for everyone.

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    History

    We may be the largest activity provider in the South West but we started from very humble beginnings. Operating from a spare bedroom, Jim our founder, bought some fibreglass kayaks to run canoe training for Redland High School (still a valued client today!)

    The company soon outgrew the bedroom and moved operations to Congresbury. The centre moved again, shortly after, to a large farm house in Banwell. This remained our base until we moved back to Congresbury in 2005 just before acquiring our current 250 acre home in Churchill, within the Mendip AONB.

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    Insured

    Mendip has public liability insurance with The Activities Industry Mutual (AIM) to the value of £5m and employers' liability cover to the value of £10m.

    Activities Industry Mutual has been established for the industry, by the industry. Their research conclusively demonstrated that the adventure activities industry is a low risk sector and that by providing and managing its own insurance the industry could prevent costs increasing unnecessarily. Companies can only join AIM if they can demonstrate a good safety record and have proven through AALA they meet all HSE standards of practice for the provision of outdoor activities.

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    Inspected

    Mendip is inspected annually by the Adventure Activity Licensing Authority a department of the Health and Safety Executive, which ensures providers adhere to nationally accepted standards of good practice and agreed codes of conduct.

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    Qualified

    Our instructors will not only have completed our rigorous in-house training, but they will also hold appropriate qualifications recognised by the relevant National Governing Body for every activity they instruct.

    Mendip operates a comprehensive programme of training and assessment to ensure our instructors are fully qualified to deliver the activities we offer. In addition to our own accreditation programme, our instructors have qualifications from the relevant National Governing Bodies that exist for specific sports and activities.

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    First Aid

    All of our staff have first aid qualifications. Our minimum standard is always that recommended by the national governing bodies of each activity we provide.

    A list of the minimum qualification including first aid requirements are included in our risk assessment. Copies of individual qualification certificates can be provided upon request.

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    Police DBS Checked

    Every Mendip instructor is checked by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) to ensure their suitability for the role of coaching children and adults. This is a requirement of retaining our AALA license.

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    Group Ratios

    Our standard group ratios fall well within those recommend by AALA. Group ratios are listed within our guidelines and are normally 1:8. We provide higher levels of staffing for all single youth groups while caving and on all advanced courses.

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    Risk Assessments

    We have guidelines and risk assessments for all our activities and locations. These are subject to the regular scrutiny of the Adventure Activity Licensing Authority.

    Copies of our risk assessments and license are available on our downloads page.

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    Transport

    All our PCV registered minibuses have high backed, front facing seats, with three point seatbelts. Each bus is checked every day by the driver and by a certified mechanic every 10 weeks.

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    Child Protection

    The entire Mendip team recognise their responsibility to provide a caring, positive, safe and stimulating environment which promotes the social, physical and moral development of each individual child or vulnerable adult.

    The aims of our Child Protection policy are:

    - To support the child or vulnerable adult's development in ways that will foster security, confidence and independence

    - To raise the awareness of both teaching and non-teaching staff of the need to safeguard children and vulnerable adults; and of their responsibilities in identifying and reporting possible cases of abuse in line with local and national procedures and guidance

    - To provide a systematic means of monitoring children or vulnerable adults known or thought to be at risk of harm

    - To emphasise the need for good levels of communication between all members of staff, schools and centre users

    - To develop a structured procedure to manage cases of suspected abuse

    - To be aware of other agencies and contacts, especially within the schools, police and Social Services

    - To ensure that all the Mendip team are checked and approved to interact with children and vulnerable adults

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    Anti-Bullying Policy

    The Mendip team understand the destructive effects of bullying. We have a zero tolerance to bullying and strive to make our teaching environment bully free!