Operating Procedures
The following gives an overview of the detailed information held in the member’s part of the web site. The focus of the documentation is to assist the wall staff in running a climbing centre to a nationally benchmarked level based on best practice.
The emphasis in this section is on the management of the climbing centre and not the construction – although it is recognised that the design does have an impact on the ability to operate the facility safely. The documentation reflects the experiences of managers who have the responsibility for managing climbing centres and the inherent experience that comes from executing this responsibility.
The documentation does not seek to be restrictive in allowing climbers to participate in their activities. But it does
recognise that owners and managers do have a legal responsibility – duty of care – in ensuring common sense is applied to the safe operation of an artificial climbing environment. Ultimately ‘climbing’ remains an activity that is dangerous which carries the risk of injury or death and participants must take responsibility for their own involvement.
1. ABC Guidelines for the Management and Use of Artificial Climbing Wall Structures
The documents include input and review by Legal Council, BMC, HSE & Environmental Health Authority.
The document covers the following areas.

  • Design & Construction
  • Maintenance & Inspection
  • Access, Groups & Supervision
  • Emergency Procedures
  • Staffing & Staff Qualifications
  • General Conditions
  • Route Setting

Guidelines are issued under documentation control to current members only.

2. ABC Aide Memoir for Operating Climbing Centres
This document underpins the guidelines by providing a structured list of questions, which a centre manager can use to check that they have addressed many of the day to day issues they face in operating a centre.
Sections include: –

  • Facilities
  • Maintenance & Inspection
  • Operating & Management Procedures
  • Personnel & Training of Centre employees
  • Emergency Procedures
  • General Conditions

The document includes a star rating system that identifies legal requirements and those items that could be construed as
negligent if not applied.

3. Standard Registration Form
The BMC and ABC have developed a standard climbing wall registration form for unsupervised climbing. A copy of this and the guidance notes are available from the members section of this site or from the BMC. Whilst the form has been standardised it should not be used without giving further consideration to all the other issues relevant to the operation of your centre.

4. Operating Managers Handbook
The ‘Managers Handbook’ provides a means for ensuring ready access to information that people need to do their job effectively and professionally. It is primarily intended for use in a paper environment where it contains reference to a range of material including: personal; safety; environmental and regulatory information. A typical example of this is the information referred to in this web site.