TT Secretary's Notices

Thu 15 Apr 2021 — A statement from the Director Ten Tors, Colonel Neville Holmes MBE

“His Royal Highness, The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh honoured Ten Tors by becoming its Patron in January 1963. For 58 years, he has been a tremendous supporter of the annual youth Challenges held on Dartmoor. Through the Event each May, organised by the Army, more than a quarter of a million young people from all walks of life, who trained for and challenged themselves, have been taught to respect and enjoy the countryside becoming ambassadors for the responsible use of Dartmoor and other wild areas. We express our sincerest condolences to Her Majesty The Queen and the Royal Family, and will remember with gratitude The Duke’s outstanding commitment to Ten Tors.”

 

Wed 31 Mar 2021 — Dartmoor 500 Word Writing Competition

The Ten Tors organisers would like young people who have been inspired by Dartmoor to write about it in 500 words or less in the form of a writing competition. Your submission can be anything to do with Dartmoor – a poem, an essay or a story. Examples might include (but are not limited to) Ten Tors training, a family walk, a terrifying ghost story, either new or an old one retold, or simply a beautifully crafted piece describing this evocative landscape.

Rules

  • Entrants must be between the ages of 14-19
  • The subject must be Dartmoor-based
  • The submission must be 500 words or less, excluding the title
  • Entries must be enjoyable or inspiring to read
  • Written pieces should be the original work of the entrant and must not infringe the rights of any other party
  • Deadline: Midnight Friday 31st May 2021

How to Enter

Send entries in a Word Document as an email attachment to SWHQ-TenTors-MAILBOX@mod.gov.uk

  • Include your name and the title of the piece
  • Entries will be forwarded to the relevant judges who will be some of the Ten Tors Committee

Prizes

  • To include a gift voucher and the winner will have their work added to the Ten Tors website for all to read.

Inspiration

A column in a national newspaper https://www.theguardian.com/uk/2002/apr/13/guardianreview.books7

 

Mon 8 Mar 2021 — A statement from the Director Ten Tors, Colonel Neville Holmes MBE

It is with regret that I have to announce it is no longer possible to hold a physical Ten Tors event on Dartmoor this May. As you know, we have been working closely with the local authorities and Ten Tors Policy Committee to plan a safe and enjoyable event but the restrictions that will still be in place over that period mean this is no longer possible. I know this will be a huge disappointment to many however, given that safety is always our number one priority, I hope you understand. We are planning to enable a virtual event which teams may wish to conduct closer to home during 2021 to keep the Ten Tors ‘flame alive’ and if so, please look out for more details to follow shortly. I can also confirm plans are already well underway to run a full Ten Tors event in May 2022 and look forward to seeing you all then. In the meantime, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your forbearance and to hope you and your families stay safe and well.

 

Fri 12 Feb 2021 — Volunteer Awards

Due to the format of this year’s Ten Tors Event and the need to social distance, there won’t the opportunity to present Volunteer Awards as usual.

Establishments can include this year’s training towards an award, and we intend to present awards from both 2020 and 2021 at the Event in 2022.

 

Mon 1 Feb 2021 — Format for Ten Tors 21

This brief aims to assist TMs planning for the TTC and JC. Rule changes and further detail will be promulgated in the next month.

Covid-19. We anticipate that many of the COVID-19 restrictions will still be in force in May requiring Ten Tors to have robust control measures. Whilst we do not know what will be required in May, decisions have already been taken neither to invite VIPs, traders, nor permit team staff and participants to overnight at Okehampton Camp and not to permit spectators. We anticipate that the rules will require masks if close to other bubbles and that social distancing will be required. Teams (including Team Staff) will be required to operate as separate bubbles throughout, including journeys to and from the Event. Stewards will enforce the rules required by our risk assessment.

Training. A minimum of 3 days training will be required, of which at least one day is to be on Dartmoor. To reduce impact on the area of the One Day Challenges, only one day of training North of the 87 northing will be permitted.

Pre-Registration and Registration. To avoid delays in the morning before the Challenges, nearly all of the administration is being moved to digital Pre-Registration. TMs will be required to upload their team’s information through their Website portal, download forms, select their preferred TTC day before allocation 3 weeks in advance, sign the Compliance Form, followed on the Mon preceding the Challenges (3 May) by downloading their team’s Control Cards and Wristband inserts and delivering the Safety Brief. Wristband holders will be mailed out. Pre-Registration will remain open for last minute amendments until midnight before each day’s Challenge to avoid changes being made at Okehampton Camp.

Arrival. On the morning of each Challenge, Establishments will be required to arrive at pre-announced set times with the closest arriving first and the more distant later. Cars will park on the Triangular Field, normally used for camping, with team minibuses parking and coaches debussing on the Square. Free vehicle passes will be issued through the Team Manager’s portals for printing and duplication, as necessary. Each team, with one staff member, will move in its bubble along signposted routes (red for clockwise teams and green for anti-clockwise routes). They will move through Registration, which will only include a final check of team Control Card and Wristbands and collection of the team’s Tracker, before continuing to the Start.

Ten Tors Challenge. There are significant changes to the Challenge. To allow distant Establishments time to travel, the start from Okehampton Camp will be at 0830hrs, with the Finish closing 10 ½ hours later at 1900hrs, although it is expected that most teams will finish much earlier. The routes will be of 25, 30 and 35 km for, respectively, the 35, 45 and 55 mile age groups. There will be 10 manned locations, all of which are Safety Controls and are vehicle accessible, in the northern half of the North Moor. To replicate the full TTC, the listed clothing and kit is to be carried. If training opportunities are limited, 35mile teams may be required to have an accompanying walking qualified adult and/or the load could be reduced to that required for a day walk with emergency overnight kit.

Jubilee Challenge. The Jubilee Challenge (JC), which will start at 0930hrs and close at 1900hrs, will remain largely unchanged. To maintain separation and to avoid overtaking, fast teams will start before the teams likely to be slower. The 4 routes are unchanged, and the Safety Control procedures remain the same.

Finish and Presentations Processes. The Finish arrangements will be like 2019, except for greater spacing in holding areas. The Presentations method will be dependent on Covid restrictions. A photographer will be present. Team Managers or a deputy will call forward their transport and escort their team back to the vehicles.

Enablers. Safety will continue to be paramount, with DRG, Scrutineers, helicopters and First Aid Posts all being deployed. Safety Stewards in and around Okehampton Camp will enforce Covid restrictions. Enablers will be accommodated where possible.

Results. To keep parents and supporters informed, we will, as usual, publish teams’ progress on the Ten Tors Website as well as on other social media. Team information will not be published in PInfo as in previous years.

Virtual Option. If COVID-19 restrictions prevent at least one month’s training opportunities, a decision will be taken no later than 28 Mar, to support establishments’ delivery of a Virtual Event between May and the end of Sep. This would seek to mirror the physical TTC and JC as far as is possible, ensuring Covid compliance. Participants’ success will be acknowledged and rewarded by the presentation of a certificate and a Ten Tors medal.

 

Thu 28 Jan 2021 — Payment extended until the 1st of April

Due to the Government not allowing schools to reopen until the 8th of March at the earliest, the payment window has been extended until the 1st of April.

 

Wed 27 Jan 2021 — Payment now open

The payment window for team entry is now open and it can be accessed through each Team Managers Dashboard until the 26th February.

If you do pay and the event is cancelled, you will receive a refund minus the PayPal return fee which is 2.90% of the transaction, plus a 30p fixed fee. On a £180 team that works out to £5.52.

You will see in the cost that an optional fee of £2 per participant has been added (this can removed) for ‘Donate for Dartmoor’. Your donations to ‘Donate for Dartmoor’ help to maintain and improve moorland access through a ring-fenced fund. Organisers of all large events are encouraged to make a voluntary donation of £2 per participant to help repair damage, mitigate erosion, and to maintain bridges, stiles and, gates. Residents and walkers are also encouraged to donate. More information can be found here.

 

Wed 27 Jan 2021 — A message from Lieutenant Colonel Dom Maxwell-Batten – Event Coordinator

“Following the announcement regarding the change to this year’s Event, a detailed explanation of the format for this year’s Event will be published and emailed to all Team Managers as soon as possible.

Thank you again for your continued support of this fantastic Event.”

 

Wed 27 Jan 2021 — A message from Colonel Neville Holmes MBE - Event Director

“The evolving situation with the COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to review how we approach the 2021 Ten Tors Event. The safety of all those involved remains our principal concern so following consultation with Team Managers and the Ten Tors Policy Committee, we have decided that for this year only, Ten Tors will comprise a single day challenge.

Teams will be allocated a slot on one of 3 identical days covering either 25km, 30km or 35km distances. Due to increased risk of transmission, teams will not be able to camp before or after the Event, though start times will reflect the necessity to commute. Spectators are also not able to attend, but we are developing some exciting ways to keep in touch online as teams make their ways across the moor. The Jubilee Challenge will still take place on Saturday over the same distance though with reduced participation.

We are sincerely sorry to have to impose these changes, but hope you understand and agree this format gives us the best chance of getting as many participants onto the moor as possible. A detailed instruction and clarification of the new rules will follow shortly. Of course we are beholden to the pandemic, so sadly cannot rule out further changes but will keep you informed as soon as we know. I would like to thank you all for your forbearance and continued support and hope you and your families stay safe and well.”

 

Fri 22 Jan 2021 — Hill Skills’ Providers – Special Offer

Following on from the 18 Dec 20 Ten Tors Notice regarding adding value to your Ten Tors training, Mountain Training England, the National Governing Body, is offering a special deal to Ten Tors by waiving the application fee to schools and groups and Team Staff.

A special form follows, which you might find easier to complete than the usual form. Mountain Training England’s Chief Executive, Guy Jarvis, explains that Hill Skills Tutors are required to hold a Mountain Training Hill and Moorland Leader (HML) qualification as a minimum. He did explore the recognition of the Summer Moorland Leader (SML) qualification with the UK Boards but this was not accepted for quality assurance reasons. Instead, he is offering a funded ‘exemption from training’ route whereby qualified SML holders may directly attend an HML assessment to gain this UK qualification at no cost.

Details of the requirements, process and Application Form can be found in the link here.

Applications must be submitted before 5 Feb 21.

 

Fri 15 Jan 2021 — One day Ten Tors Challenge - a summary of the contingency plan

Should we not be able to run the full Ten Tors Challenge because of Covid-19 restrictions, lack of training time and/or no camping being permitted, our last contingency plan before cancelling is to hold a limited Ten Tors Challenge (TTC) involving one day events, with a third of the teams taking part on Fri 7th, Sat 8th and Sun 9th May (the Jubilee Challenge would continue to be held on the Sat).

The TTC would aim to be inclusive for those travelling long distances or having limited training opportunities. In planning the routes, our aim has been to support the maximum number of participants to succeed, while maintaining our usual high standards of safety.

The TTC would take place on the north end of North Dartmoor starting and finishing at Okehampton Camp. All the controls would be Safety Controls and, for additional safety, be vehicle accessible. The 11 clockwise and 11 anticlockwise routes would be 32.5 km for the 35 milers, 37.5 km for the 45 milers, and 42.5km for the 55 milers; this may be reviewed, depending on situational changes.

The kit list may be reviewed to reflect the activity being undertaken, and details will be promulgated if required. We are currently reviewing the safety requirements for the proposed one day events, and will distribute the details as necessary.

The Ten Tors Rules requiring training on Dartmoor are being reviewed, to ensure that the training is safe and appropriate.

Allocation of routes would take place on the Mon preceding the TTC, (Mon 3rd May), to allow teams additional time for planning their routes and for Team Managers to check them, as well as conduct briefings.

It is anticipated that teams will need to arrive at OKC by 0630 hrs on the morning of their event, and the finish would close at 1900hrs (although it is expected that most teams would finish earlier); these proposed timings will need to be confirmed.

To shorten the Registration process, information required for the safe running of the one day TTC will be collected by, Control Cards/Wrist Bands/ Rule Cards printed by, and other documentation completed by Team Mangers, as part of online Pre-Registration; this will result in a rapid check of the teams starting and the issuing of trackers, before teams continue to the start.

The start will be spread in a wider area than usual, as will the finish and presentation, to provide required separation.

The Army are keen to provide participants with a worthwhile challenge in May. The detail of it will depend on many factors, so planning remains flexible to cope with the situation and will benefit from your views. If you have any questions or suggestions, please address them to the Ten Tors Secretary

 

Wed 13 Jan 2021 — A message from Lieutenant Colonel Dom Maxwell-Batten - Event Coordinator

Dear Team Managers,

I hope you are all keeping well in these challenging times.

I wanted to personally give you a brief update on the plans for Ten Tors 21, and thank you for your patience and understanding.

At this time, we do not know what the format of this year’s Event will be, but please be assured that I will give you any information I have regarding the format of the Event as soon as possible. The options being considered are a full two day Event with COVID-19 measures or a number of one day Events with no overnight camping for teams.

If the physical Event is cancelled, our aspiration is to support Establishment-organised activities as part of a virtual Event. Our priority is to ensure the safety of all those involved in the Event, and our aspiration continues to be to deliver as full an Event as we feel it is safe, legal and appropriate to do.

Thank you again for your perseverance in these uncertain times, and please be assured that I will update you again as soon as I am able to.

 

Wed 6 Jan 2021 — Payment date change

Due to the current situation with COVID-19, we (the organisers’) have decided to delay payment again until further notice.

Rest assured, we are still working hard planning a safe event (in whatever format that maybe), if Government guidance permits it.

The moment any decisions have been made we will inform you as quickly as possible.

 

Sun 3 Jan 2021 — Payment date change

In light of the current COVID situation, payment has been delayed by a week and it will now open on the 11th January.

We don’t anticipate a decision on the type of event being run this year until the middle of January at the earliest.

 

Tue 29 Dec 2020 — Where's To?

This year's observational quiz for Ten Tors participants (Where’s To?) is now available under the Information tab (Forms & Cards).

It's available in 3 formats, Booklet, A4 and Interactive. To use the Interactive format, a PDF reader must be downloaded onto the device on which the quiz is being taken on.

Copies of the Where's To booklet will be printed and posted to all TMs with the maps in early 2021.

 

Fri 18 Dec 2020 — Some suggestions for adding value to the Ten Tors experience

The coronavirus pandemic has presented challenges to many aspects of our normal lives, nowhere more so than within outdoor activities. Ten Tors Challenges 2020 fell victim and was cancelled. Training for Ten Tors 2021 has been disrupted but contingency plans are in place to hold Ten Tors on 7-9 May, covid permitting. Whilst the vaccine offers a return to near-normality, the unpredictability causes concern. With this uncertainty, it would be all too easy to put Ten Tors training on hold. This would be a further setback for young people whose developmental opportunities have already been restricted.

Many Ten Tors Challenge participating establishments are continuing with training when possible and this is to be applauded. For others, the lack of a definite training objective and planning difficulties has been overwhelming.

In order to provide alternative, relevant, staged training objectives that are not fixed date dependent, Ten Tors establishments may wish to consider incorporating Mountain Training Hill Skills and National Navigation Award Scheme Navigator courses in their training programmes. These accredited courses offer opportunities to gain valuable knowledge and experience in outdoor skills and provide the foundation for a life-long habit of outdoor activity and enjoyment. Some Ten Tors Challenge establishments already use them and have found them beneficial and rewarding. The qualifications gained provide formal recognition of the training Team Managers already provide for Ten Tors trainees. The trainees are enthusiastic, and parents are also appreciative of the additional recognition. Receiving this training provides useful stepping stones to safe enjoyment of the outdoors and Mountain Training qualifications.

Mountain Training and NNAS courses can only be delivered by registered providers and whilst this is a minor administrative burden, it is worth the effort to secure the benefits. On the other hand, you may wish to employ a registered provider

The Hill Skills syllabus at https://www.mountain-training.org/personal-skills/hill-and-mountain-skills/hill-skills includes most of the essential Ten Tors skills that Team Managers are already delivering but with the added benefit of the achievement being recognised by Mountain Training, the National Governing Body. Registration to deliver Mountain Training Hill Skills courses is detailed at: https://www.mountain-training.org/england/new-provider-applications. Further information is available from Katherine@mountain-training.org. It should be noted that the application deadline is Mon 1 Feb 21 with an induction course, probably virtual, on Sat 6 Mar 21. There are also Approved Tutors within the South West if you wish to outsource the training.

The National Navigation Award Scheme offers training and qualifications at 3 levels, Bronze (the essentials), Silver (open country) and Gold (the pinnacle – able to read the landscape and navigate to subtle contour features). The syllabi are at The Awards - National Navigation Award Scheme (nnas.org.uk). Registration to deliver NNAS Navigator courses is detailed at: https://nnas.org.uk/course-provider/become-a-nnas-navigator-award-provider/. There are also many existing providers offering the courses in the West County. Contact details are at Find a Course - National Navigation Award Scheme (nnas.org.uk) .Further information is available from info@nnas.org.uk. There are no application or induction deadlines for NNAS registration. NNAS courses have been accredited by the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework Partnership (SCQF), rated at Bronze level 4, Silver 5 and Gold at level 6 with each award worth 2 points. These ratings are accepted by all the UK qualifications agencies, eg the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) at levels 1, 2, and 3, and by the European Qualifications Framework (EQF) at levels 2, 3 and 4.

 

Wed 2 Dec 2020 — General Sec Points

Below are a few points that I would like to share with you:

  • We the organisers recently held a TT Policy Committee meeting to update the Committee on the planning for TT21.
  • It’s the Event Director’s intent to run a two day event if at all possible, however, three one day events are still being planned for. There is also still a possibility that spectators may not be permitted, which will depend on the current guidance as we get closer to the Event.
  • In consultation with the TT Policy Committee, it is currently our intent that the cost of team entry for TT21 will remain as usual. This is because the cost to deliver the Event in 2021 will remain very similar, whatever the format of the Event.
  • We are not going to make a decision on the format of the Event until at least early next year due to the constant changing situation of COVID-19.
  • On the Team Managers’ Brief, I did mention that you would be receiving some Ten Tors maps and Green cards. Unfortunately, there has been a slight delay with the printing due to printing company not being an essential business. Once they are ready for posting I will email you all informing you that they are on their way. I will be posting them to the Team Manager address held on each dashboard, if this address is incorrect please logon and update it.
  • The Head of Establishment assurance form will be added onto your Dashboard shortly with instructions on how to electronically sign it.

 

Sat 24 Oct 2020 — DNPA Guidance for Ten Tors Training

The Dartmoor National Park Authority is not supporting Recreation Events of 50 or more walkers for the remainder of 2020. This also applies to individual Establishments Ten Tors training activities.

Smaller groups are allowed to enjoy walking on Dartmoor.

Individual Establishment should be training in accordance with the current COVID-19 rules and their risk/safety assessment.

We would be grateful that any Establishments training for Ten Tors should avoid popular areas and car parks, and avoid gathering in large groups prior to walks.

It is suggested that walkers should split up into smaller groups separated by time and space.

Rob Steemson, DNPA Community & Landscape Management Ranger – Ten Tors link officer.

 

Fri 23 Oct 2020 — First Aid qualification validity

In response to questions about the validity of first aid qualifications, Mountain Training (MT) and South West Moorland Leader Training Scheme (SWMLTS) are both taking HSE guidance to cover all relevant first aid courses such as the Outdoor (16 hour) First Aid Course. Therefore, in short, they are stating that anyone who has a first aid certificate that has expired has until the 31st March 2021 to renew.

MT have also explained the situation regarding first aid and Mountain Training qualifications’ validity. They require a relevant, valid first aid qualification to be held by candidates at the time of assessment in order to be awarded a leadership qualification. However, from this point onwards the responsibility to make a ‘first aids needs assessment’ lies with the employer/ deployer – and this is the law. This means that the employer/deployer should put in place the appropriate first aid cover for any particular event. Obviously, in order to be able to operate independently and remotely a leader will therefore need to hold a relevant first aid qualification. However, cover could be provided by other means such as by another qualified person in the party or separate cover – all depending on the employer/deployers’ assessment. Therefore, MT will not invalidate anyone’s leadership qualification just because their first aid has expired. For Ten Tors, the responsibility, in nearly all cases, lies with the Head of Establishment as it does for all safety during training.

You might also wish to look at the Resuscitation Council’s advice on adapting CPR for the possibility of the patient having Covid https://www.resus.org.uk/covid-19-resources/covid-19-resources-general-public/resuscitation-council-uk-statement-covid-19 . It’s simple; get help, place mask or cloth over patient’s nose and mouth, chest compressions only, use defibrillator if available.