Adventurous Activities

From mountain biking to sailing there is a wealth of high quality adventurous activities to take part in across Scotland. Through local authority outdoor centres or local providers you can find all levels of challenge, exploration and outdoor skills development.

SAPOE works closely with all the adventurous sports National Governing Bodies and the national safety organisations to help ensure that the standards for adventure remain high and that leaders have access to up to date skills and advice.

SAPOE members oversee the safe delivery of activities in their local authority. Some advisors manage a team of outdoor instructors or run an outdoor centre.

The Adventure Activities Licencing Authority (AALA) section of the HSE website provides the following information:

The Activity Centres (Young Persons’ Safety) Act 1995 and the Adventure Activities Licensing Regulations 2004 make it a legal requirement for providers of certain adventure activities for young people to undergo an inspection of their safety management systems and hold a licence.

Licensing only applies to those who offer activities to young people under the age of 18 years and who operate in a commercial manner.

Generally, licensing only applies to these activities when they are done in remote or isolated places. For example, climbing on natural terrain requires a licence but climbing on a purpose-built climbing wall does not.

The AALA section of the HSE website also provides the following information on licencing:

A licence is not required for:

  • Voluntary associations offering activities to their members (eg scout groups, local canoe clubs etc)
  • Schools and colleges offering activities only to their own pupils or students
  • Activities where youngsters are each accompanied by their parent or legally appointed guardian (this does not include teacher or youth leader)

News and updates from AALA are also available on the website or from your local SAPOE representative.

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