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About Us

We may be the largest outdoor activity provider in the South West, but our core values have remained constant since we began in 1978

ENVIRONMENT: The Mendip Hills are our office. Our business relies on our environment and our environment relies on us. We take real pride in this responsibility and it inspires everything we do.

EDUCATIONAL: The great outdoors is the ultimate classroom. It's constantly changing, challenging, surprising and amazing. You don't have to come to us with a specific educational agenda, but the learning opportunities hidden in outdoor activities will teach any curriculum objectives in a powerful, physical, relatable and memorable way!

EXPERIENTIAL: Outdoor activities are intended to challenge both physically and mentally. The sense of achievement you get from pushing yourself can inspire genuine life changing moments.

ENJOYMENT: Outdoor activities are fun, that's why we do this. Whatever you're doing, wherever you're doing it and whatever the reason, we can guarantee you'll enjoy it and go home with special memories you'll treasure!

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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 CRB 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!