Policies and Procedures

For Penrhyn Castle Forest School Site

Policies and procedures where updated on: March 2016
Policies and procedures will be updated on: March 2017



  1. Statement of Purpose. 7

1.1         Aims and Objectives of the Service. 7

1.2         Numbers, ages, and sex of children. 7

1.3         Catering of children’s needs. 7

1.4         Opening Hours. 7

1.5         Staffing. 7

1.6         Provision Provided. 7

1.6.1          Facilities. 7

1.6.2          Services. 7

1.6.3 Activities Offered. 8

1.6.4. Routines. 8

1.6.5 Strong Wind Provision. 8

1.7         Language used. 8

1.8 Terms and Conditions. 8


1.8.2 Cancellation. 8

1.8.2 ILLNESS. 9

1.8.3 CLOTHING.. 9


1.8.5 FOOD.. 9




1.8.9 WEATHER. 10

1.8.10 WEBSITE. 10

1.8.11 Trademark & Copyright. 11

1.9 Contact information. 11

1.10 Admissions policy. 11

1.11 Complaints and Concerns. 11

  1. Arrangement of Emergency. 12
  2. Site Information. 13

3.1 Address. 13

3.2 Grid Reference. 13

3.3 Nearest Emergency Service. 13

3.4 Contact Numbers. 13

3.4.1 Wild Elements Office. 13

3.4.2 Thomas Cockbill (Director and FS Leader). 13

  1. Relevant Legislation. 14

4.1 The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995. 14

4.2 The Health and Safety at Work, etc. Act 1974. 14

The main piece of legislation covering occupational health and safety in Great Britain. It confers a responsibility on an organisation to ensure that the sites used are safe and fit for purpose. 14

4.3 The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999. 14

4.4 The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992. 14

4.5 The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992. 14

4.6 The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002. 14

4.7 The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998. 14

4.8 Disability Discrimination Act 1995. 14

4.9 The Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981. 14

4.10 The Child and Minding and Day Care (Wales) Regulation 2010. 14

  1. Health and Safety. 15

5.1 Risk Assessment Procedure. 15

  1. Daily Procedure. 16

6.1 Pre-session – off site. 16

6.2 Pre session – on site. 16

6.3 Session. 16

6.4 End of session – on site. 16

6.5 Post session – off site. 16

  1. Tool Procedures. 17

7.1 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). 17

7.2. Tools used. 17

7.2.1 Bow Saw.. 17

7.2.2  Knife. 17

7.2.3 Axe. 18

7.2.4 Loppers. 18

7.2.5 Billhooks. 18

7.2.6 Pruning saw.. 18

7.3         Storage and Maintenance. 19

7.4 Other Equipment. 19

7.4.1 Tarpaulins. 19

7.4.2String. 19

  1. Fire Procedures. 20

8.1 Fire safety procedures. 20

8.2 Fire safety equipment at the log circle. 20

8.3 Rules for Fireside activities. 20

8.4 Extinguishing the fire. 20

  1. Food safety and hygiene procedure. 21

9.1 Food Safety. 21

9.2 Hygiene. 21

9.3 Toilet procedure. 21

  1. Child: adult ratios. 21
  2. Emergency procedures. 21

11.1 First aid procedure. 21

11.2 Missing person procedure. 22

11.3 Not collected procedure. 22

11.4 Irregular occurrence/ uninvited guest/ stranger procedure. 22

11.5 Deteriorating weather conditions procedure. 22

11.6 Behavioural problems procedure. 23

11.7Dealing with the media procedure. 23

  1. Child protection policy and procedures. 24

12.1Good practice. 24

12.2 Recognising signs of abuse. 24

12.3 What to do with your concerns of abuse. 25

12.4 Allegations against staff. 25

  1. Drink and drugs policy. 25

Appendices. 26

Letter to Parents. 26


Special requirements of participants list. 29

Programme planning sheets (EXAMPLE). 30

Daily checklist. 31




1.    Statement of Purpose

1.1           Aims and Objectives of the Service

The aim of wild in the Club is to provide a 1 day to 3 day holiday playscheme, during the holiday periods except for the Christmas holidays.

This will be an opportunity for your child to spend quality time within the natural setting at the Forest School Site at Penrhyn Castle. This will allow them to make new friends try out new and challenging things as well as have the opportunity to explore the own interests to do with the natural world and also bushcraft activities.

1.2           Numbers, ages, and sex of children

The Wild in the woods Club can cater for a maximum of 24 girls and boys from the age of 8 years old and upwards. This is not upper age limit, however they tends to be a natural age limited of around 14 to 15 years old.

1.3           Catering of children’s needs

The Staff and volunteer follow the Forest School ethos which looks and the needs of the individual and the group as a whole and we try to tailor the session to these needs, through small achievable task and scaffolding principles.

Due to the nature of the site and the provision we provide we are unable to offer placement for children in a wheelchair, which are unable to go to the toilet and cannot feed themselves. We will endeavour to suit individual’s need and with need to be considered on a case by case bases.

1.4           Opening Hours

This is 9 till 5 on a Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday during the school holiday except on the Christmas holidays.

1.5           Staffing

All member of the Staff and regular volunteer will has the Enhanced level of DBS check. The Ratio will be at minimum 1 adult to 8 children. However we will endeavour to make sure that there is a higher ratio than this as we work in a tag team approach where individuals will get a chance to take time out from a rest.

1.6            Provision Provided

1.6.1   Facilities

On the day the facilities will consisted of Tarp shelter (the number use will depend on the weather conditions. They is a food preparation area with washing up provision. There is also a compost loo and a hand washing facility. Equipment and activity material is kept on an on-site shed.

1.6.2   Services

The service provided will be to spend quality time on the natural environment we the individuals will be able to connect to other and develop Friendships. They will also get an opportunity to learn about the natural world, bushcraft techniques, Campfire Cooking and crafts and activity in a woodland setting.

1.6.3 Activities Offered

This is not means an excused list of Activities but will range from building dens, challenges, fire lighting and cooking, identification activities, arts and crafts, knife work, other tool use, free play elements,  games and obstacle course, to walks in the natural setting.

1.6.4. Routines

The Day will normally consist with the children helping to set up camp such as lighting the fire and put out equipment needed for the day’s activity. Around 11am we will have a snack (Toast, pancake and a drink), then we will have activities until 12:30 and break for lunch. In the afternoon we will them have an afternoon Snack around 2:30 to 3pm and then close back at the fire circle at 5pm.


1.6.5 Strong Wind Provision

In the event of the strong wind we will need to leave the woodland site and will make provision with the National Trust to walk up the drive way to the grass areas on the ground and alter the activities, carrying all provision  with us. Also, will try are best to full warn parents of the changes during the day and will be back on the grassland on the other side of the Road at 4:45 for pick up.


1.7           Language used

A present we have no Leader that can speak fluent Wales, but used incidental welsh where possible. However, we aim to make sure that there is a welsh speaker on site were ever possible.

1.8 Terms and Conditions

By booking with us you are agreeing to the following terms and conditions.


Places for all sessions will only be allocated once payment has been received. Payment is either made online through Paypal or via form and cheque. Please note that there is service charge to Paypal which 3.4% + 20p). So please check that you have received payment confirmation or your child’s place may not have been allocated.


Early booking cut-off date applies to when Wild Elements receives the form, not when it is completed.

1.8.2 Cancellation

Fees will not be refunded due to sickness or last minute cancellation.

If a child is late to a session that requires a walk to the site from the drop off point, two members of Wild Elements Staff will wait for the child for up to twenty minutes, and try and contact the parent or guardian. If the child has not arrived within that time period and the parent has not let us know why, it will be treated as a late cancellation, and the staff will go to the site. Parents who arrive after this time will be responsible for walking their child to the site from the drop off point.



The activities presented at Wild in the Woods are physical. Please ensure your child is healthy enough to attend the session. If they have had vomiting and/or diarrhoea in the past 48 hours please keep them home from the session. We do not offer refunds in the case of illness but may offer you another session, this will be a case by case bases. If your child falls ill during the session we will contact the person listed as the child’s emergency contact on the medical form and expect that arrangements will be made to collect your child.


There is no such thing as bad weather — just inappropriate clothing! If your child is not properly dressed it is a health and safety issue. We take your children’s welfare very seriously and therefore ask that you bring your child appropriately dressed to each and every session. They should be wearing sturdy, waterproof shoes or boots (hiking boots or wellies) and full water proofs (jacket AND trousers) every session. Rain or shine they must be waterproofs as the weather is changeable, the temperature is lower in the woods, we use water and mud in our activities and the woodland has bramble and stinging nettle as well as biting insects. This water proof layer will provide your child with protection. It is essential.

If your child arrives inappropriately dressed we reserve the right to refuse to take them out into the woods as a matter of health and safety. We will not offer any refunds for cancellations due to being inappropriately dressed.
Your child will get dirty, may get muddy and could possibly rip their clothes. Wild Elements takes no responsibility for soiled or damaged clothing.


During the sessions the children do not need to bring anything with them. In fact we encourage them not to for a very good reason — items brought from home can interfere with the natural play in the site and can get damaged or lost. Please encourage your children to leave all personal effects at home.
The holiday sessions the children will need to bring a lunch and snacks so the will have personal effects. Please ensure they are all clearly marked with your child’s name. If anything is lost please contact Wild Elements 07799566533 or info@wildelements.org.uk . If we have anything left behind we will endeavour to return it — obviously this is easier if it is marked with your child’s name.
Wild Elements takes no responsibility for lost or damaged personal property.


1.8.5 FOOD
During Wild in the Woods your children are required to bring their own food. Please be aware that there are many children with allergies and pack your child’s lunch accordingly. Wild in the Woods is a physical experience so your child will need premium fuel to help them enjoy the whole day. We recommend that you healthy food avoiding processed food and food laden with colours, flavours, preservatives and other additives. Please also ensure they have adequate for a full day session. Also a full water bottle and/or a flask of tea during cold weather. We Actively encourage no fizzy drinks or sugar laden ‘juice drinks’. This is for your child’s welfare as well as the leaders’. Some children react quite strongly to additives and sugar, making their behaviour much more difficult to manage.


During the session we may cook on the open fire as this adds and extra element to the Playscheme. Therefore it is important to inform Wild Elements of any dietary or allergies needs or conditions one the booking form.


We are register with the Information Commission. Our handling of all information provided to us during booking will comply with the Data Protection Act 1998. We will not sell or disclose your personal details to any other agencies. We will not contact you other than about other Wild Elements activities.


At Wild Elements leaders hold a current Forest School First aid certification which includes outdoor paediatric first aid. Please ensure that you have checked your child’s medical record to ensure it is up to date.


Please note that all Medication must be self-administering as Wild Elements Leader can only assist in the child taking the medication.


Please have all medications (eg epi-pens, inhalers etc) in a waterproof container with your child’s name clearly marked on it.
Please also communicate any behavioural, educational needs or communication specifics your child has. Any information you pass on will be held in strict confidence it is just that the more we know about the way they work the better we will all get along out there.
Please apply any sun protection cream and insect repellent before the session starts.


The first dose of any new medication must be given at home in case of a reaction / allergy.


All incidents and accidents will be recorded and shown to parents at the end of the day to sign



We take photos and short video clips during the sessions. There are for use on our website, promotional leaflets and Facebook page. No personal information will be used with the photos or videos. If you do not want your child being photographed please communicate this either on the booking form or to the leader of your child’s session.


Wild Elements will continue to run the sessions unless there is high winds (above 21mph) or a thunder and lightening storm very close by. During the Holiday Playschemes we will endeavour to run alternative session.


The leader of the session will check the weather forecast and inform all parents and participates if the session has to be cancelled or the is alternative plan . If the session is cancelled you will be offered another session. No refunds will be issued.


1.8.10 WEBSITE

Wild Elements maintains this site as a source of information for its customers. Wild Elements does not guarantee or warrant that the material provided on the site in wholly accurate and will not infringe the rights of others.


Wild Elements welcomes links to its site, however, all links must be authorised in the first instance by emailing Info@wildelements.org.uk.


Wild Elements does not guarantee that the functional aspects of the website will be error free. Whilst the site is hosted by a reputable third party carrier, Wild Elements does not ensure that its website or the server that makes it available are free of viruses or other harmful components.

Private information submitted via the website will be treated confidentially.

Wild Elements will not be held accountable for any loss arising out of or in connection with the use of information available from this website whether direct or indirect, even if Wild Elements has been advised of the possibility of such damages.


1.8.11 Trademark & Copyright
The trademarks, logos and service marks which you see on this site are registered and unregistered trademarks of Wild Elements. Nothing contained on the website should be construed as granting, by implication or otherwise, any licence or right to use any trademark or logo displayed on this website without the written permission of its directors.

All contents of this website are: Copyright ©2016 Wild Elements. All rights reserved.


1.9 Contact information

Contact person is Thomas Cockbill

Email: tom@wildelements.org.uk

Phone: 07799566533 (Office)

07792014166 (Personal)

Address: 1 Trevelyan Terrace

High street


LL57 1AX

1.10 Admissions policy

Admissions policy to the Wild in the Woods playscheme is that it is open to children with some level of independence (i.e. are able to move around with ease in a woodland setting for the duration of the Playscheme, can feed and use fascinates unassisted). They are aged of 8 plus.

We can offer alternative programmes for children with additional support need but we would suitable career provision, Please contact Tom Cockbill for further details on tom@wildelements.org.uk or 07792014166

1.11 Complaints and Concerns

It is hope that all staff will maintain a high degree of professionalism and that the service we provide will be deliver to a high standard and also parties will receive a high light on communication to make a lasting positive experience.

However, if you feel that we are not performing to a high standard, in the first instance please see a member of the team to see if the situation can be resolved.

If the matter is not resolved, then please get in touch with Tom Cockbill: tom@wildelement.org.uk or 07792014166, alternatively please call 07799566533.  If you would like to speak to another Director please inform us of you wish and send an email to info@wildelements.org.uk

We aim to respond to you complaint within 3 working days, if not you will be informed of and alternative time frame to deal with you complaints.

We understand that  it is your legal right to contact CSSIW to make a complaint, please can you inform us as we may be able to solve some of the issue Locally and then if you are still unhappy with the team or outcome.

If you would like to complaint about Wild in the Woods which is a registered activity, then the contact:

  • Tell us face to face by visiting one of our regional offices, or speaking to our inspectors during an inspection
  • Phone us: 0300 7900 126 (press 1 for North Wales Office)
  • Email us:CSSIW@wales.gsi.gov.uk
  • Write to us:
    CSSIW National Office
    Welsh Government
    CF48 1UZ

Or go to

https://cssiw.gov.wales/raiseaconcern/providing-feedback-care-service/?lang=en to fill out a form online.

Alternative you can complain to the local Authorises

2.    Arrangement of Emergency

In the event of an emergency your child’s safety is paramount to Wild Elements will get them to a safe place. We will then contact you on your emergency contact to make arrangements.


During a medical emergency involving you child we will pass on the information that you have provide to aid with health professionals, therefore it is you own responsibility to write about an long-term condition or illnesses, which may after the health of your child on the playscheme.


3.    Site Information


3.1 Address

Penrhyn Castle



LL57 4HT


Main Contact Number: 01248 353084


3.2 Grid Reference

53.218373, -4.101404


3.3 Nearest Emergency Service

Police – 2 miles away; if a non-emergency call either 101 or 0300 330 0101

Hospital – Ysbyty Gwynedd – 5.3 miles, via A5 and Penrhos Road, LL57 2PW, 01248 384384

Fire dept. – 1.6 miles away; if a non-emergency call 01248 362287


3.4 Contact Numbers


3.4.1 Wild Elements Office


3.4.2 Thomas Cockbill (Director and FS Leader)



4.    Relevant Legislation


4.1 The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995

Makes it the duty of an organisation to report any death, serious injury or set of circumstances that nearly caused a death or serious injury. If an accident results in a participant being taken straight to hospital, or is the fault of staff or equipment provided by the organisation, it must be reported to RIDDOR.

4.2 The Health and Safety at Work, etc. Act 1974

The main piece of legislation covering occupational health and safety in Great Britain. It confers a responsibility on an organisation to ensure that the sites used are safe and fit for purpose.

4.3 The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999

This piece of legislation makes it a legal requirement for an organisation to have risk assessments covering the sites used, and activities carried out by employees and other people who interact with the organisation.

4.4 The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992

This piece of legislation covers access to clean drinking water, risk of falling or being struck by falling items, and washing and sanitary facilities.

4.5 The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992

Requires organisation to take appropriate steps to reduce the risk of injury to participants who are lifting heavy objects.

4.6 The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002

Ensures that an organisation shall not carry out work which is liable to expose anyone to any substance hazardous to health unless they have made a suitable assessment of the risk created by that activity and taken steps to meet legal requirements

4.7 The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998

Ensures that equipment is kept in usable condition and staff are trained in its safe and proper use and maintenance.

4.8 Disability Discrimination Act 1995

Makes it illegal to deliberately place a disabled person in a situation where they are at a disadvantage compared with those who are not disabled, if there was reasonable steps that could be taken that would mitigate the disadvantage.

4.9 The Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981

The organisation must sufficient provide staff and equipment to render first aid to participants who become injured or ill while interacting with the organisation.

4.10 The Child and Minding and Day Care (Wales) Regulation 2010

This Regulates the Playscheme provision and means that the Wild in the Wood is registered with the Care, Social Services Inspectorate Wales and will aim to make should that the National Minimal standards are upheld by Wild Elements.

5.    Health and Safety


No activity shall be carried out at Forest School without prior site and activity risk assessment by a member of staff (either written or dynamic risk assessment – if a risk is noted during a dynamic assessment it needs to be noted down after the session). Risk Assessments and Session Plans will be made available to all supervising adults prior to the session, and only staff who are trained to supervise activities like tool use or fire lighting shall be permitted to do so. During the session children will be encouraged to consider the risks involved in their activities and how best to mitigate them.


5.1 Risk Assessment Procedure


Having ascertained what activities will be carried out in the next Forest School session – through conversation with the class teacher and pupils – a session plan will be written up. An activity risk assessment will then be written to accompany the activities on the session plan. A site risk assessment will accompany the activity RA in the paperwork taken on site, and will be updated with any new hazards found on site during the dynamic risk assessment – part of the pre session routine. All risk assessments will be available on request and will be sent – along with an explanation sheet, to all the staff who are involved in the session.



6.     Daily Procedure


6.1 Pre-session – off site

  • Ensure mobile phone is charged
  • Check weather forecast for the day, note the weather conditions, temperature and wind speed.
  • Make sure that all supervising adults receive the session plan and risk assessments
  • Ensure resources are packed for the session – include:
    • Hot/cold drink and snacks
    • Drinking water
    • Toilet paper
    • Lesson specific resources
    • Bin facility
  • Ensure that any tools that will be used are in good order and that relevant PPE is available.

6.2 Pre session – on site

  • Set up base camp
    • Tarp or other shelter
    • Drinks facilities
    • Fire kit (See fire safety procedure)
    • Toilet
    • Hand and dish washing
  • Carry out dynamic site risk assessment – note any new additions on site assessment
  • Set up activity(s)
  • Light fire if appropriate

6.3 Session

  • Introductory routine – warm up, name game, hazards, boundaries, introduce today’s activity
  • Main activity
  • Free Play – time for children to pursue their own projects and games
  • Plenary – reflect on the day, put out fire, kids get on bus.


6.4 End of session – on site

  • Evaluate the session
  • Tidy up site
  • – if final session for that group then remove dens and other structures –


6.5 Post session – off site

  • Ensure all tools are in good working order, then store in locked room.
  • Write up evaluation
  • Write up enxt session plan incorporating children’s reflections from the plenary and staff evaluation
  • Create risk assessment to compliment session plan


7.     Tool Procedures


7.1 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)


Personal protective equipment should be used by the participant(s) where it is useful to mitigate a hazard posed by an activity. Over the course of day to day activities in Forest School this will mainly manifest itself as gloves worn on the non-tool bearing hand when using knives, saws and secateurs.

7.2. Tools used

7.2.1 Bow Saw


Check:  Blade is secure, under tension, sharp and devoid of rust.

Handling: When carrying, ensure that the handle is held at the point of balance so that the blade is held downwards, ensuring that no one is at risk of running into the blade if the guard falls off. Keep the blade guard on the saw when not in use.

Purpose: To cut through deadwood (peg teeth) or greenwood (raker teeth) depending on the saw blade, not worthwhile unless the stem is thicker than a 10p coin

Use: Ensure you are in a safe stance, and the blade has a clear path that is not obstructed by any body parts (yours or other peoples!) ensure the blood bubble rule is observed to make sure people are safe. Two strokes backwards to start the cut will reduce the likelihood of the saw bouncing along the log when you start sawing properly. Use the whole length of the saw and continue all the way through the log.

Finish: When you are finished working with the tool, clean any debris from the blade and replace the blade guard.

Maintain: It may be necessary to change the blade on the saw occasionally, if the original becomes blunt or rusted.


7.2.2  Knife


Check: Blade is sharp, sheath is intact, grip is solid.

Handling:. Pass the knife handle first to someone else, when the blade is not covered by a sheath.

Purpose: Whittling and removing bark, not for carving names or pretty patterns into wood!

Use: ALWAYS cut away from yourself. Hold your legs together and cut to one side of them, ensure that your blood bubble is clear and that you are somewhere that people are not likely to run through

Finish: Always return the knife to its sheath when not in use.

Maintain: Sharpen the knife using a whetstone and then clean with an oily rag before returning to the sheath.

7.2.3 Axe


Check: Head is sharp and secure

Handling: When not in use, either return to the sheath or embed the blade in a stump or log.

Purpose: To split wood, either for firewood or craft purposes, cutting along the grain rather than across.

Use: When working with hatchet and mallet, work cutting into a log or stump. Hold the hatchet at 90° to the body so the blade will pass by the body without harm. Ensure your blood bubble is clear before beginning to cut. Hit the back of the hatchet head with the mallet, (force > speed). If the hatchet goes far enough into the wood that you can no longer hit it, you can pick up log and hatchet and drop both onto the chopping block to drive the blade in further.

Finish: When the job is done, return the tool cover and leave in a safe place.

Maintain: Ensure the head is sharp and secure, sharpen the axe head using a whetstone, then oil the axe head (3-in-1 oil) and the shaft (linseed oil) and store somewhere dry.

7.2.4 Loppers


Check: blade is sharp and secure, bolts are tight, and spring mechanism is unobstructed.

Handling: No glove is required for this as both hands are holding the blunt end. When carrying, hold the lower handle so the loppers can’t fall open. Carry the loppers with the sharp end pointing forwards, so that you are always aware of anyone who may run into it.

Purpose: to cut stems that are finger thickness – the diameter of a 10p coin.

Use: ensure the blade does not cut into soil, raise stems off the ground if possible so the blades are not damaged by grit and damp.

Finish: close the loppers and return them to a safe place or tool bag.

Maintain: Keep the blades open by placing one handle over your shoulder and check that the blade is sharp, oil with a rag and return to tool kit.


7.2.5 Billhooks

Billhooks are not to be used with children, if the wood is too small for a knife to split it then use a hatchet and mallet.


7.2.6 Pruning saw


Check: Blade is sharp and secure, bolt and locking mechanism are tight

Handling:  When not in use the tool is to be kept folded shut, a glove is to be used on the non-tool hand for the duration that the too is in use.

Purpose: To cut stems too thick for loppers

Use: ensure blade is locked open and secure stems before cutting, establish a groove with 3-4 backstrokes before sawing in earnest, use the whole length of the saw blade to cut as efficiently as possible.

7.3           Storage and Maintenance


When not in use, tools must be stored somewhere locked and dry. Ensure that all the tools are oiled, in relevant sheaths or containers, and are sharp. Ensure that tools are counted out at the start of the session and counted back in at the end. Keep a supply of PPE with the tools to ensure that people have access to it.


7.4 Other Equipment


7.4.1 Tarpaulins

  • Ensure that tarps are at least 8 feet off the floor when over tarps
  • Where ropes are used to attach tarps to trees – ensure they are higher than the head of the tallest participant where possible
  • Where tarps are attached to the floor using ropes and pegs, ensure the ropes are brightly coloured



  • Ensure that string is kept with assistants during sessions, to ensure children do not take the entire ball of string for a project!


8.    Fire Procedures


8.1 Fire safety procedures

  • Fireside activities follow a strict safety protocol.
  • Children are first introduced to the log circle without a fire. They are told never to cross the fire circle. Instead they must walk behind the seating and walk around. This is practiced until the leader is confident they understand.
  • One of the leaders or volunteers always stays at the fire while it is lit.


8.2 Fire safety equipment at the log circle.

  1. Emergency procedure notice in case of fire outbreak – on tree
  2. Burns bucket containing clean water and covered by a towel
  3. Burns kit – in the emergency box
  4. First aid kit – in the emergency box
  5. Fire extinguishing bucket – full and next to the fire.


8.3 Rules for Fireside activities


  • The leader must have the attention of the children when explaining fire safety. They will not continue talking until all are listening.
  • Location of fire safety equipment is discussed
  • All children to tie back loose clothing and hair.
  • No more than three children to engage in fire-based activities at once
  • Children to adopt a safe-kneeling position when working at the fire
  • Gauntlets are used to handle cooking equipment
  • Cooking implements are heated from a stable tripod
  • Gauntlets will not be used to add fuel to the fire, as the natural reflexes of the individual will prevent the person from getting burnt, (however, if there are any medical conditions hindering the person’s reflexes, gauntlets must be used).


8.4 Extinguishing the fire


  1. It is the Forest School Leader’s responsibility to ensure the fire is fully extinguished at the close of a session.
  2. Children extinguish the fire by emptying half full cups of water upon the fire in a controlled slow manner
  3. The leader or assistant will check the fire is fully out by holding the back of their hands no less than 5cm above the ash to check it is out.



9.    Food safety and hygiene procedure


9.1 Food Safety

  • All food preparation will follow basic principles of food safety hygiene as taught on the level 2 certificate in Basic Food Safety
  • The leader is overall responsible for food preparation
  • Food stuffs will be basic, such as dough, marshmallows and hot chocolate and will exclude meat


9.2 Hygiene

  • Hand wash station is on site with clean water and soap and hand towel
  • Children must wash their hands before eating onsite and if they have handled yew trees and before they leave the site.


9.3 Toilet procedure

  • Children will be encouraged to use toilets at school before arriving on site.
  • For Urinating children will use the screened area. Toilet roll and antibacterial hand cleaner is available at the screened toilet.
  • For defecating children will use the toilet in the stable block. They must be accompanied to the building by the teacher, assistant or volunteer.



10.        Child: adult ratios

  • Wild in the Wood club will have a minimum of 1 adult to 8 children. This is based on the NSPCC guidance. There will always be a Leader, assistant (or volunteer) and teacher. However if the children are under the age of 6 the Ratio will be 1:3


  • For some activities there will be a higher ratio depending on the type of activity and the level of confidence of the FS with the certain activity.


11.        Emergency procedures

11.1 First aid procedure

  • All Forest School Leaders will hold an up to date first aid certificate, all assistants and volunteers will be briefed on the emergency procedures.
  • A first aid kit will be present on site at all times during the sessions. There will be two types the first is the main first aid kit containing the accident book, near misses and minor injuries book. And a second, personal size first aid kit carried on the Forest School leader’s person.
  • The appointed person will be in charge of a first aid situation and look after the injured or ill person, and will arrange emergency help where necessary themselves or through a responsible third party.
  • The Forest School Leader will have emergency contacts, location direction and mobile phone with them.
  • Each Forest school Session has the emergency contact and information sheet displayed near the fire circle with details of the


11.2 Missing person procedure

  • Preventative measures: the leaders will explain the importance of staying within the boundaries of the FS, and regular head counts will be carried out by all leaders.


  • If there is a missing child this protocol will be followed:


  1. The time will be noted and the group will be gathered together
  • All adults of the group will be informed
  • Teacher to stay with the remaining children and take them back to the fire circle
  • Forest School Leader and assistant will begin a search of the Forest School site and surrounding area of woodland and estate.
  • After 15 minutes the Police and the Child’s parents /guardians are informed – the search will continue.
  • The Forest School leader will work with the police to continue search efforts

11.3 Not collected procedure

  1. We will wait with the child for 15minutes after the session has ended.
  2. We will attempt to call the parent / carer on all the contact phones that we have starting with the emergency number.
  3. We will attempt to contact the parent for a further 15 minute.
  4. If the parent has not been collect with 30 to 40 minute after the scheduled pick up time and no contact has been made then with will call the relevant Local Authority Social Services for Advice on the next stage.
  5. The child well be locked after by a member of the time.


11.4 Irregular occurrence/ uninvited guest/ stranger procedure

  • The estate and woodland has permissive access to the general public in the event of unwanted people that are causing a problem the leader will ask them to leave the FS site and will be shown the path to the nearest exit.
  • If they will not leave, the leader will escort the person away from the group. If the leader and assistant feel that it would be appropriate form the children to be gathered together and led to the stable block. The leader will stay and make sure the person stays away from the children.
  • Once at the stables, the assistants or leader will close the doors and contact the site manager or police


11.5 Deteriorating weather conditions procedure


  • Forest School happens in all but the worst conditions. Schools are requested to bring wellington boots and waterproof coats.
  • The leader will check the weather forecast the evening before.
  • A final decision will be made on the morning and it will be based on the conditions at the FS site.
  • If the session is cancelled we will give at least one hour notice to the group contact.
  • A tarpaulin will be erected if there is chance of rain.
  • If the weather deteriorates during the session the group will be gathered and led to stables and the session will continue with wet weather activities.
  • If the wind gets up to 21mph or the leader deems the movement of the tree canopy is a high risk on the FS site then the session will be stopped and group gathered and led to the stables.


11.6 Behavioural problems procedure

  1. The child will be asked to calm down and to respect others, there will then be a discussion with the child and they will get a warning..
  2. If the problem still persists then the child will be as to sit at the log circle or away from the rest of the group to calm down.
  3. If this continues then the child will be dealt with by the teacher in charge.
  4. If the problem continues into the second or third session then the child will not be able to attend the rest of the sessions


11.7Dealing with the media procedure

  • Children’s parents will be asked for their permission for their children to be photographed for publicity and where consent is not given or refused then the team will endeavour not to take images of the child(ren). And if caught on a photo this will not be used for publicity and will be deleted
  • For filming or TV interviews where images or films of the child(ren) will be used, separate consent will be asked for from the teacher in charge of the group.


11.8 Dealing with a fire


  1. In the event of a fire get all the children together by calling the 1, 2, 3, come to me and make this at obvious landmark on the site (i.e. the fire circle or Tent).
  2. Move the children to a safe location
  3. If safe to do so one member of the team will collect the register (the safety path to the shed), if not we will call the office to use the details to contact parent if needed.
  4. If the fire is a small manageable fire leader and one assistant will attempt to put it out while the other assistant stay with the children. This this is not manageable seek professional help.
  5. Alert the Castle and also the authorities such as the fire and police service.
  6. If the fire is too

12.   Child protection policy and procedures


12.1Good practice



  • Any hugging or picking up of children is to be treated with common sense. Do hug children but do so in full view of others and should be made into a fun ‘group hug’ activity.
  • Do not encourage close contact
  • Never pick children up beyond emergency needs



12.1.2 Protecting Forest School workers from allegations of abuse

  • Avoid close physical contact with the children
  • When spending close one-on-one time with a child, try and ensure another adult is present or at the very least inform another adult what you are doing. When taking children to the toilet make sure there is at least two children present.


12.1.3 Equal opportunities

  • Every effort will be made to include all children in the Forest School activities
  • No child shall be prevented from attending due to disability , race or religion


12.1.4 Child Data protection

  • Information sharing regarding the personal information of children and volunteers shall be restricted and only shared with the relevant people on site and authorities (such as the police and child protection agencies). Such data includes:
  1. Any information including the name of the child, the personal details of the child – address, telephone number or age
  • Confidential information will be kept locked up at all times after the sessions.




12.2 Recognising signs of abuse

  • The signs can be varied :

Physical abuse will in the form of fresh bruising or cuts which cannot be explained on a regular occurrence over a period of time.


  • fresh bruising or cuts in irregular place such as the back


  • Mental abuse this very difficult and can only really be seen it a child confides in a leader, if the child talks to you make sure that you only listen to them; don’t ask any questions as this will complicate any further act. You must tell the child that discussion cannot remain confidential


NB: all signs are difficult to recognise and if you have concerns follow them up with the leader / teacher of the group or the Headteacher of the school.


12.3 What to do with your concerns of abuse.


  • If you have concerns of abuse you should consult the teacher in charge and discuss your concerns. Then assist with the necessary procedure of the individual school.
  • If you suspect the teacher in charge to be involved you should contact the head of the school, and assist with their procedure.

12.4 Allegations against staff


  • All staff must take care to make sure that they are with in eye contact with another adult or have a large group of children and not to become too friendly and to keep a professional boundary.
  • If there are allegations this will be investigated with help of the school and the local authority.


13.                       Drink and drugs policy


  • No drugs or alcoholic drinks will be allowed on site during a FS session.
  • If the leader or assistant are found to be drunk they will not be allowed to take the session.





Letter to Parents



Welcome to Wild in the Woods Club at Penrhyn Castle


This email is to confirm that {enwrCyntaf3} has been accepted on the Wild in the Woods Club.


When: {paGlwb}

Drop off point: at the bend just inside the main gate at 9am.

(for directions to Penrhyn Castle, please visit their website)

Pick up point: same place at 5pm.


Our Wild in the Woods Club is an opportunity for your child to experience nature and the outdoor environment in a safe, secure and hands-on way. Sessions are run by Forest School trained leaders and committed volunteers, who want to share their own enthusiasm for the environment by organizing activities and programs for, and with, local children and young people.


We will be located within the National Trust grounds at Penrhyn Castle. The children are encouraged to investigate and explore but also to respect all living things. We hope your child or children will enjoy coming to the sessions and participate in a wide range of environmental activities designed to help them learn, have fun and build a positive relationship with the natural environment – everyone’s contribution is valued.


Children learn best from first hand experiences; exploring, playing and learning using a range of activities (both designed by the leader and instigated by the children themselves) is what forest school and Wild in the Woods clubs are all about. Building a sense of independence, high self esteem and team work are important parts of Forest School, but health and safety considerations are always of paramount importance.


The woodland we use is fairly dry where we are based but there will be a lot of sticks, nettles and brambles around us. A lot of hard work will be going into clearing and preparing the main base camp area but for the comfort and well being of your child make sure your child comes to the woods properly dressed. As well as helping your child to understand and enjoy the environment, we pride ourselves on taking their safety and welfare very seriously. All leaders undergo a comprehensive recruitment process and work within a framework of safety procedures. If you would like to know more details about our safeguarding policies or procedures please get in touch, contact details below.


Please help us by making sure that your child is suitably dressed for each meeting, taking into account the weather conditions and the nature of the activity.

The following dress code is mandatory:

Sturdy boots or wellies

  • Long comfortable trousers (not jeans as they take a long time to dry out when wet!)
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Waterproof over-trousers (or a spare pair of trousers)
  • Sun cream, and hat for hopefully sunny days!
  • Insect repellent if desired.

Please bring a small rucksack with:

packed lunch and snacks

  • drink/drinks (‘fruit shoot’ size is ideal)
  • an extra layer of clothing in case the weather changes or there is a chilly wind.


NOTE: please leave mobile phones or any other gadgets at home.

Rain will not cause a cancellation unless heavy or accompanied by a strong wind. In the case of strong wind we might be required to cancel the session.

Please use old clothes and let your child know that at WiW (Wild in the Woods) Club THEY CAN GET DIRTY and you don’t mind!

Please note: adults are not invited to join in the sessions unless by prior agreement to help run the programme.

If you need to contact us please contact Wild Elements either the Office (07799566533) or Tom (07792014166) or email: info@wildelements.org.uk

If you did not hear about this from our newsletter, and would like to hear more from us in the future you can sign up to our e-newsletter.

We hope your child enjoys the activities, and I thank you for your help and cooperation in helping to make them a success.

All the best,

Tom and the Wild Elements team

Please read our FAQ, which includes our cancellation policy.

**** Yn helpu i gael pobl allan yn yr awyr agored ac yn agosach at natur,
mewn ffordd hwyliog! Yn estyn allan i gymunedau lleol yng Ngwynedd, Conwy
ac Ynys Mon

Helping to get people outdoors and closer to nature, the fun way! reaching
out to local communities in Gwynedd, Conwy and Anglesey

Dilynwch Elfennau Gwyllt ar Facebook<http://www.facebook.com/wildelementswales>
// Follow Wild Elements on Facebook <http://www.facebook.com/wildelementswales>

Office: 07799566533  Tom: 07792014166 info@wildelements.org.uk






Special requirements of participants list


REF Name Special requirements






























Programme planning sheets (EXAMPLE)


Week 1: Welcome to the forest school site and leaders


·         name game

·         Fire circle

·         Head shoulder knees and toes game (HSK&T)

·         Walk about the boundaries (show the climbing area and rules)

·         Free play


Week 4: art in the forest



·         log fire game (warm up game)

·         Wild art (Andy Goldsworthy)

·         Free play (Camp fire Activity for 4-5 leaf head dress)


Week 2: Explore and discover


·         Name game, Rules and Warm up

·         Bug Hunt

·         Snack and drink

·         Free Play


Week 5: Team building and fire lighting


·         Name game, Rules and Warm up

·         Obstacle Course

·         Fire lighting in groups of 2-3

·         Free play


Wash hand and drinks time

Week 3: discover a friendly tree


·         Name game, Rules and Warm up

·         Tree ID Game

·         Snack and drink

·         Free Play

·         Light Fire

Week 6: Role plays in the woods


·         HSK&T (warm up game)

·         Pizza Cooking

·         Free Play

Wash hand and drinks time

Closing up camp and Share of Best bit


Daily checklist

Task When to carry out Completed


General checks _ X  
Charge mobile telephone Morning    
Check forecast                             Night before    
Check forecast Morning    
Safety walk through woods.

Check paths for dog mess,  litter, dangerous trees and branches

Safety equipment Morning    
First aid kit out Morning    
Burns kit out

Bucket of clean water with towel over – full

Fire blanket out Morning    
Fire extinguishing bucket out – full Morning    
Emergency notice pinned on tree at fire pit Morning    
Toilet: put toilet paper and sanitiser Morning    
Washing up bowl – washing up liquid


Hand washing bowl and soap and towel Morning    
Bin and recycling Morning    
Drinking water container Morning    
Cups, Kettle


Paper work      
Risk assessments Morning    
Near miss book Morning    
Accident book Morning    
Handbook (templates – letters, risk assessments, near miss and RIDDOR records) Morning    
Session plans – detailed and overview Morning    
Evaluation and reflection records Morning    
Emergency procedure out Morning