If your son or daughter is coming on a TrekCo visit, we expect you’ll want to know as much as possible about who we are and how we operate. TrekCo is a company run by two ex-teachers, Steve Ranger and Paul Morley – so we understand how schools and students operate, and what their needs are. We work closely with the school staff to ensure that we’re providing the best care for your children. Both Steve and Paul are still very active and involved with the daily running and instruction of TrekCo, even though we are now one of the largest independent outdoor pursuits companies in the country with 40 instructors. There are some common areas of concern for parents, so we’ll answer those straight away in the ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ section lower down this page. Outdoor companies now need a Licence to operate issued by the Adventurous Activities Licensing Authority. This is a Government body run under the HSE and the licence is issued annually – you can check our Licence by searching at the AALA website for the Trekking Company in the ‘South and West of England’ section. Some of the information in the ‘Teachers Information’ pages may also be useful to you as parents. Frequently Asked Questions Aren’t these activities dangerous? No, not at all. Our most dangerous activity is when students have free time around the campsite, where typical playground type injuries occur. Statistically it is four times safer for a child to go on holiday with the school than with their parents – and ten times safer to attend a trip run by an AALA licenced body like ourselves than to go on holiday with their parents! Can we phone our children whilst they are away? That’s up to the school. We recommend that you don’t, because it usually increases any feelings of homesickness – especially in younger students. The school will have a policy for emergency phone calls so please check their trip letters for information on their contact details. The Department for Education and Local Education Authorities recommend that students are never allowed to take mobile phones on school trips for many reasons. Can we call you at TrekCo to get a message to our children? Not directly; we will only pass messages on to teaching staff as we have no way of checking who is calling us and whether they should be speaking to children. Are all of your staff CRB Checked? Anyone working with children now has a Criminal Records Bureau check when they apply for a job, and that applies to TrekCo staff. Ours are currently run through the same system that Kent County Council and Girlguiding UK use, and staff have an Enhanced Check. Are your staff ever in charge of the children? No, the school staff are always in pastoral care of the school students. Instructors are there to organise the camp and provide the activities. Any personal, social or disciplinary problems are handled always by school staff. We are of course in charge of the actual activities, but we ask that a school member of staff accompany the group alongside the instructor. My child has a special diet – can you provide this? Usually, yes. We have catered for tens of thousands of students, and have rarely encountered a diet we can’t provide for. We have fridges available for the storage of special foods/medicines that students bring with them. Please let the school know well in advance of any dietary requirements/ allergies and we will let them know if this poses a problem. What type of food is provided? This varies, but a typical menu can be found by clicking the link below. Please remember that this is typical of the type of food, not an actual menu. The school will request any special diets for individual or groups of pupils with dietary needs. Click here for the typical menu Does everyone have a First Aid Certificate? Yes. Outdoor instructors have to have a First Aid Certificate in order to gain their outdoor qualification – so every member of our staff is First Aid certified. What kit does my child need for camp? Teachers are provided a kit list, based on the page on this website. However the school may specify some extra items, so please refer to their kit list always. You are free to refer to our list as a basic guideline – but don’t use it as your only source! Is the camp secure at night? No campsite can have locked doors. However, Blackland Farm is a national site for the Girl Guides. We provide a security person at night if schools request it, and teachers camp right next to the students. The site is in the middle of the countryside.