Thank you to those gorge-walking providers who have been displaying their ID cards in vehicles and on leaders' persons.
BBNPA wardens have already given us the feedback that "displaying licences in vehicles and having ID cards on display does really help with our checks and ultimately enables us to do a better job of identifying the unlicenced providers operating in the gorges, which in turn will help lead to a more sustained management of the use of the gorges" – so from their point of view our new system does seem to be working for them (although they have also reported that "there are still a lot of providers not displaying their SWOAPG cards in their vehicles or making leaders' ID cards clearly visible").
NRW and BBNPA staff and wardens will shortly be conducting spot-checks in both Sychryd and Mellte gorges, so if you are not yet displaying your ID cards, I recommend that you consider doing so soon!
NB we have also received advice from the Activity Industry Mutual insurers that:
- although they do not specifically rule out cover in the case of trespass, they assume that any trespass would be incidental (i.e. not deliberate); and
- deliberate trespass (e.g. operating in the gorges without complying with the well-publicised concordat arrangements) would call into question the level of planning and risk assessment of any activity and therefore may result in a company not being covered, since insurance is dependant on venues and activities being fully risk-assessed and well-planned, including consideration of rights to use land and compliance with relevant access agreements.
If you have not received your ID cards, need more, or have any questions about the gorge ID arrangements – please let me know.
Steve Rayner, SWOAPG Coordinator