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British Walking Federation

Insurance

Organisers must provide proof of adequate Third Party Insurance Cover for any event that they may organise. 

The BWF administers an insurance scheme, but this can only be used by current member clubs and it must be applied for when registering club membership. If organisers use the BWF Insurance scheme, then the following declaration must appear on their Entry Leaflets. The exact wording MUST be adhered to.

“The organisers are not liable for accidents, thefts and/or damage to property. Every effort will be made by the organisers to make this a/these safe enjoyable and memorable event/s.” (The wording in italics can be amended according to whether it refers to a single event or a group of events)

Risk Assessment

Risk Assessments are not mandatory but the BWF recommends that event organisers carry them out on all events and permanent trails. Most clubs already perform an informal risk assessment, but do not bother writing it down. It is good practice when organising any type of event to perform a risk assessment, and probably gives more protection to the organiser than it does to those taking part in the event. Walk organisers should also ensure that measures are put in place to minimise any risks identified. Failure to prove that an assessment has been carried out and that reasonable safety measures are in place could result in event insurance being jeopardised.
Risk Assessment Sample 1    Risk Assessment Sample 2

Adventure Activities Licensing Regulations (AALR)

All events approved by the BWF must comply with the requirements of the above regulations. The vast majority of BWF events are not affected by these regulations. The criteria that govern whether an event will be affected by these regulations can be simply put as:

Do any of the routes of the event:

  • go over moorland?
  • go more than 600 metres above sea level?
  • go more than 30 minutes travelling time from an accessible road?

If the answer to all three questions is ‘NO’ then the event does not fall within the scope of the Regulations and no action is necessary to gain Event Approval but it is recommended that entry leaflets include a statement of this fact.

If the answer to any of the questions is ‘YES’ then the Regulations do apply and the event organiser must provide written proof of how the Regulations will be met before Event Approval can be granted. In most cases this will consist of not allowing persons under the age of 18 years to participate in affected routes unless they are accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. If an event is affected by the Regulations, organisers must state in their entry leaflet that this is the case and also state what action has been taken to comply with the Regulations.

It must be stressed that this is a very brief simplification of complex regulations.  Further information can be found at the HSE website.