FAQs

Here are some of our most frequently asked questions about Gilwell24. We hope you find them useful. If you have any unanswered questions please email us.

Can I attend if I’m under 14?

If you are a Scout or Guide involved in linking with an Explorer Unit or Senior Section Guide Unit you are welcome to attend Gilwell 24 as part of that unit. This will normally apply to participants aged 13.5 or over

I’m over 18 how can I take part?

Gilwell 24 is run for members of the Explorer Section and Senior Section Guide Section aged between 14 and 18. The activities provided will be aimed at members of this age range and those linking from younger sections. Unfortunately if you are aged 18 or over you will not be able to attend as a participant. Instead you may want to consider helping with another unit that is coming to the event or possibly applying to join the staff for Gilwell 24. Please email us if you are interested in coming to work on the staff team for the actual event or on the build team the week before. We are particularly looking for teams to develop and run team activities throughout the event.

Can I come alone? I’m an Explorer – can I come without my leader?

Yes you can come by yourself as long as you have your event passport with you. We would encourage you to join up with another unit before the event and try to travel as a larger group. Try contacting other units in your area or let us know if you haven’t had any luck and we’ll attempt to put you in touch with local groups who will be attending.

Can we come if we’re not from the UK?

Arrangements can be made for groups from outside the UK. Please contact us directly to discuss this. Volunteers from other countries are also welcome, but please contact us prior to registering so we can make the necessary arrangements.

Can I use our own parental consent forms?

No. Unfortunately we require the young people to have our consent form at any activity requiring it.

When do bookings open?

Bookings will be open soon.

When will bookings close?

Bookings will close when the event is full, normally by mid-June.

What happens if I do not book by the closing date?

In order to guarantee a place you should get your bookings in by mid May. It may be possible to book after this date but for large bookings we strongly recommend that you book as early as possible – last year the event completely sold out. Also you may not book meals or order T-shirts after this date. As there are limited quantities of pre-booked meals, we advise that you book as early as possible.

What happens if the event becomes full before the closing date?

All our Gilwell events are very popular, so unfortunately if the event fills up to capacity before the closing date we will close bookings. This will be done for health and safety reasons and to preserve the experience of all participants.

I have received an initial confirmation, when should I expect the full details?

We normally send full confirmation by email in late June but materials will be available on the website prior to this.

What happens if I’ve booked and now some participants can’t come?

We’re sorry, but we are unable to refund for participants who pull-out from coming.

Can I pay by cheque?

Yes – please make cheques payable to “The Scout Association” and use the paper booking form (available to download here to book and send your cheque in to the Gilwell 24, Gilwell Park Activity Centre, Bury Road, Chingford, London, E4 7QW.

What does ‘on-site contact number’ mean on the nominal roll form?

The on-site contact number on the nominal roll form should only be filled in for Leaders/Helpers and would normally be a mobile telephone number. It will only be used in a situation where a young person needs to contact their leader urgently.

Can we bring Leaders’ children with us?

Where there is no other option and the child is a member of The Scout Association through another section (or where the Scout Group has taken out additional insurance) then Leaders’ children may attend. However they may not take part in activities and should pay the Leader/Helper price. Groups should also bear in mind that the event is 24 hours and we do not ask, expect or require participants to be quiet in the general camping areas on the Saturday night.

Will I get a t-shirt?

All participants and leaders who book by the booking deadline will receive an event t-shirt. These will be available for collection from the event reception when you book in. T-Shirts for additional participants will be provided subject to availability. The T-Shirt colour won’t be announced until nearer to the event.

What are the t-shirt sizes?

Small – 34/36”
Medium – 38/40”
Large – 42/44”
XL – 46/48”
XXL – 50/52”

Can I buy extra t-shirts on top of what I have ordered?

There will be a small number of T-shirts available to purchase on the weekend and we may also take additional orders up to the cut-off date. Please contact us on 0208 498 5411 if you need to amend your booking.

What tentage should we bring?

Most groups bring a small shelter to store bags under but you don’t really need more than that as you’re not planning to sleep – right? Those who come on the Friday night tend to bring lightweight hike tents and this is normally enough.

Will we be allocated a campsite on arrival?

We will be operating an allocation system for campsites as this enables us to make full use of the space available. If you have any specific requirements about camping space, please email us in advance at info@gilwell24.info Please note that on the day requests cannot normally be accommodated.

 

Can we put up a marquee?

If you feel you need to bring a marquee, please contact us using the contact details provided on the “contact us” page to make arrangements. Normally most groups find that a gazebo or simple shelter is sufficient for this event.

What’s the situation regarding Nights Away permits?

Gilwell Park is a campsite, and requires you to have a campsite nights away permit. If you do not yet have a Nights Away permit, then you should either try and pair up with another group that has one, or find an additional leader from another section that does. Please note there is no blanket Nights Away coverage for this event. In exceptional circumstances where a Nights Away permit is an issue, please contact us using the contact details provided on the “contact us” page.

If you are a young person, you can attend Gilwell 24 with an “Event Passport”. This must be issued by a Night’s Away permit holder, so ask your leader or district commissioner to see if you can get one of these. We ask anyone camping with an Event Passport to let our Camping Space team know on info@gilwell24.info and they will be there to help and support you.

 

Do you have indoor accommodation available?

We do not normally have indoor accommodation available for groups to book as it is used for our staff during the event. We do however have some tents on site which is pre-pitched and can be used for free, please let us know if you would like to use these (some 10-man bell-tents and traditional patrol ridge tents).

 

Are we allowed to bring caravan or camper vans?

Because of limited space and planning restrictions, we discourage the use of camper vans/caravans. However you may bring a camper van/caravan by prior arrangement, though numbers are limited and space is allocated on a first-come first-served basis. You should bear in mind that only specific areas are used for caravans and these may not be near where your group wants to camp. Please contact the campsite office to organise this on 020 8498 5411.

Can we stay at Gilwell and camp the week before?

We do not normally allow groups to arrive before the Thursday as this enables us to get the site ready.

Can we set up our camp before the weekend?

You may set up camp on the Thursday before the event, but if you are staying overnight you will need to pay additional camp fees or pay per tent. The site will not open on the Friday for incoming visitors until 2pm so we can be fully prepared. We strongly advise that young people do not arrive for the event until after 6pm as the site is busy with traffic before this time.

Can I bring more participants on the day?

You may bring up to three additional participants per booking reference.

Is there a meeting place for groups arriving separately?

Yes. At Gilwell if your group is arriving separately, the best place to meet is outside the event reception. During the event at Gilwell the Clock Tower in the main camp square is the best meeting point.

What about special needs groups, are all activities open to them?

Please approach the instructor on the activity, who will then assess the suitability of the activity and provide additional support if required. If you have any special needs requirements that we need to know in advance, please get in touch with us using the contact details provided on the “contact us” page.

What do we need to bring?

A tent for when you get tired (if you think you’ll need it). Spare change of clothes (for those muddy activities), suitable activity clothing, food or money to buy food, event passport, consent forms, swimwear and towel. You should also arrive at Gilwell wearing the top half of your uniform.

What type of cooking can we do? Can we have / cook on an open fire?

Fires are allowed in designated areas on site. During this event fires are not permitted in the main camping areas – please use gas stoves or the designated areas for fires.

Can you tell me whether food is provided?

Food is not provided as part of the fee. You can either camp and cater for yourselves or you can take advantage of the catered service. Details of the menu are on the booking form.

What refreshments will be available?

Drinks and sweets are on sale for the participants. A café serving hot and cold food as well as a burger van and coke bars will also operate for the duration of the event. Those with pre-booked meals will also be able to eat in the Gilwell Restaurant.

Can we get food delivered to site?

If you are having a food delivery to site please make sure that you are clear with the provider about where to bring it to and ensure that one of your group is there to collect it. It’s helpful if you let our traffic management team know when you arrive what time you are expecting the delivery and they can advise you on the best delivery location and direct the delivery to you.

Is there a bar onsite?

The White House bar is open for hotel residents. As this is an event for young people, our passion is to demonstrate that it is possible to have fun without alcohol. We strongly uphold The Scout Association’s rules about alcohol and do not permit our volunteers to drink alcohol during the event. We also recognise that as many leaders will be driving and taking responsibility for young people travelling home early on the Sunday morning that we have a responsibility to make sure leaders are in a fit state to do so safely.

Can we smoke onsite?

Gilwell Park is a no-smoking site.

Do I have to stay up for 24 hours?

The aim is to challenge yourself to last the full 24 hours. Many participants do manage to stay awake all night, but if you want to make the most of the event we recommend getting a full nights’ sleep on the Friday night. Can you also stay awake long enough to complete our Gilwell 24 Gauntlet Challenge in the middle of the night and make it through to the survivors photo?

Will there be offsite car parking?

Yes. Due to the size of the event we don’t have the space required for camping and parking on site and therefore we ask for all vehicles (including volunteers and staff) to be taken off site. We will then provide a shuttle service to bring you back to the site. Some groups who don’t have a lot of kit can park directly off-site and then get the shuttle bus onto site like a park’n’ride!

Does a shuttle bus operate from the station at Chingford?

For Chingford (Gilwell Park), please take the short walk to Chingford Plains, which is one of our off site car parks (out of the station, turn right on the main road then left onto Bury Road). The exact times the shuttle bus will operate will be published in the final leaders information pack, but this will normally be Friday night 1800 – 2300 and Saturday 0700-1000. Return shuttles operate on Sunday morning and on request throughout the event if you need to go to the vehicle or go shopping etc.

 

Is there a quiet area for drivers to sleep?

Yes, we do try to keep a designated area for drivers to sleep, please bring small tents and ask at reception who will direct you to the best location.

Can I charge my mobile phone?

We have a mobile phone charging station in secure lockers at the info point. Please bring your own charger.

 

Can we buy neckers or badges?

We hope to make event neckers and badges available in the providore to purchase during the event.

Is there an event badge?

No there is no event badge for this event, although we do hope to sell a Gilwell 24 badge within the Providore at the event.

Do you allow dogs on-site?

Gilwell Park does not allow dogs on-site except for guide dogs and other assistance dogs.

What should I do if I feel something is unsafe?

Please contact a member of the event staff at your earliest convenience and we will ensure that the matter is addressed.

Can we see your risk assessments?

Our Event Safety Plan is available for viewing within the event office during the event. We do not publish this in advance due to its size, complexity and the fact that event conditions and activities can change right up until the day. We also rely on a number of third parties to supply activities, and therefore our Event Safety Plan contains other material such as ADIPS certificates, copies of liability insurance etc

How do the activities work?

All participants can try any activity, an allocation system is not used.

Why do you not operate an activity allocation system?

After trying many different options throughout the years, we have found that participants prefer to pick and choose the activities they want to do, rather than be funnelled towards a particular set. Some of our activities will take down names and tell young people to come back if there’s a long queue. We actively encourage young people not to queue in any queue that will be longer than 20 mins, but to go and try another activity and come back as there’s plenty to choose from.

Will there be first aid facilities on-site?

Yes, we will have the services of an external first aid provision throughout the weekend.

Do we have to pay extra for any activities?

All activities are included in the price for participants

Do you need help with the event?

Yes, we’d be very grateful for help at the event, particularly in the week before, when we can ensure that you’ll experience some of the fun of the event. If you are able to help for the whole weekend and/or the week before we will feed and accommodate you where possible. Should you wish to offer your services please see the “Volunteer” page.

What is there for leaders to do? Can leaders take part in activities?

Activities are intended specifically for the Scout and Explorer age ranges. In order to give the maximum opportunity to the young people, helpers and leaders are not permitted to take part in the activities during the day unless there are no participants wanting to use an activity and at the discretion of those running the activity. We are planning some leader activities and training opportunities during the event and you are welcome to help out with the activities too! Please see the Volunteering page for more information.

I’m a DJ or musician, can I perform at Gilwell 24?

Yes! In 2014 we had our first open-mic stage and welcome performers, singers, dancers etc to come and have a go. Some of the best performers may also be invited to perform on the main stage during the event. We also have a special DJ workshop where you can come and DJ. Unfortunately we already have a great resident DJ for the main disco already so don’t need anyone further for that, sorry.

When is Gilwell 24 next year?

Gilwell 24 is normally the second weekend in July. Here are the confirmed dates for 2018:

Gilwell 24 2018 6th to 8th July

If you are organising a longer camp or planning to travel internationally please let us know and we’ll do our best to confirm full details for you.

 

 

Can I join the event team as part of my Duke of Edinburgh or Queen’s Scout Award?

If you are looking for a fun and rewarding residential project to take part in as part of your DofE or Queen’s Scout Award, join the Scout Adventures team in the week leading up to Gilwell 24 and help us to create an amazing event experience for participants. Sign up here. For questions, email us on info@scoutadventures.org.uk.