Last updated: 7th June 2021
We will refund or reschedule any booking that you need to cancel for any COVID-19 related reasons. Whether that be government restrictions, self-isolation requirements or simply a change in personal circumstances.
We will endeavour to ensure courses run, though if Mountain Independence needs to cancel we will offer either a full refund or rescheduled dates.
The Current Guidelines in Wales
In Wales the restrictions are different from the rest of the UK. Being based in Wales we are required to adhere to and follow the Welsh government guidelines. Below is a summary of the current situation in relation to clients being able to come to us for courses.
Monday, June 7th
- Up to 30 people can meet in any outdoor area, including private gardens, public spaces and outdoor regulated premises such as cafes, restaurants and bars.
- Follow social distancing rules with people you don’t live with or who aren’t in your exclusive extended household.
- Wear a face covering in all indoor public places (unless you have a reasonable excuse not to wear a face covering).
What does this mean for our Courses?
- We can run all courses as we run all our courses at smalller ratios than the limits above.
- We will wherever possible, maintain social distancing on courses. Where this is not possible e.g. at belays when climbing, we will introduce mitigating measures such as mask wearing.
- If we use our indoor meeting space on any courses, masks will be worn. It is permitted to remove masks to eat and drink, though we will encourage social distancing as appropriate.
What Steps We’re Taking
We have revised our Booking Terms and Conditions to highlight the requirements we’ll be making of clients.
In addition to the usual Medical Information and Participation form we will be asking all clients to fill in and send a COVID-19 self assessment form prior to the course starting for screening purposes.
Instructors will also be filling in the same COVID-19 self assessment form for client peace of mind.
We will only be using staff who as a minimum have already received the 1st dose of the COVID vaccine. Clients are not required to have been vaccinated.
Ideally clients will bring as much personal kit as per the kit lists for each course.
Clients should bring a suitable mask and disinfectant hand gel for times where social distancing is not practical.
The current rules permit lift sharing, though state that separate households ideally should not share transport. With often limited parking at venues, we will discuss transport arrangements on a case by case basis and take precautions if lift sharing such as wearing masks, ventilation and keeping journeys short.
Each morning of the course the instructor will check client temps using an IR thermometer to check for normal range. If anyone has a high temp or other symptoms we will have Lateral Flow Tests on hand to help guide decision making if clients want to utilise these.
Throughout delivery of our courses we will socially distance where practicable. Instructors will adapt teaching and coaching to maintain this where possible.
Where social distancing is not possible, with consent, the 2 metre rule will be reduced with mitigating measures such as wearing face masks and minimizing cross contamination.
We’re lucky to have our own private meeting space to run courses from. Masks are required to be worn when meeting in public indoor spaces, though can be removed when eating and drinking.
Currently the rules permit use of meeting indoors and we will plan to start courses from our base, though if clients are concerned we can meet outside directly at venues. If the rules change before a course starts we may need to change our plans and meet outdoors as required.
If you need to cancel for any reason we will offer a full refund or reschedule the course dates as preferred.
Our Decision Making
We want our customers to feel comfortable joining us and ensure we’re acting responsibly delivering courses. Our decision making will always be guided by:
- Safety – whether it is reasonably safe and actually realistic to deliver the activity in respect of virus transmission.
- Lawful – we will follow government guidelines (in our case Welsh guidelines).
- Evidence Based – We will use the best available activity-specific evidence and analysis to guide our decision making.
- Socially Responsible – we live and work in Snowdonia. Rural communities are still nervous about the national park area re-opening to visitors and we will be mindful and be acting responsibly as ever.
- Community – we’ll be paying close attention and taking a lead from organisations and bodies such as Mountain Training, the British Mountaineering Council, Association of Mountaineering Instructors and Snowdonia National Park Authority to ensure we’re in step.
- Clear Guidelines – we’ll make clear specific measures to clients upon booking and whilst actually partaking in activities.
- Refund Policy – we will be operating a 100% no quibble refund policy for clients who need to cancel due to coronavirus.