Guildford News

Results and Round-Up – BMC YCS 2017 Round 1!

Monday, January 30th, 2017 - Posted by Danie

TeamThe Youth Climbing Series (YCS) is run by the British Mountaineering Council (BMC) and gives youngsters aged between 7 and 17 the chance to compete in a fun series of competitions within their region.

During the competition the kids are required to climb 3 routes and 3 boulder problems – scoring points for the distance that they manage to climb up the route or boulder problem.  A maximum of 100 points is available on the routes and 60 on the boulder problems.  All routes and boulders are set specifically for the competition and take in to account not only the age of the children that will be climbing them, but also their size and the strengths and weaknesses which are likely at their age.

Once everyone had been briefed and the kids had been split down in to their categories it all got started and the kids started cranking away on their specially set routes and problems.

For Round 1 we had 7 Craggy Youth Team members and a great number of Youth Squad members also in attendance. As always, everyone put in so much effort and represented us impeccably – We are so proud of all of you!

Matilda Collins – Youth C Girls – 1st place (Youth Team & GB Development Squad)

Toby Roberts – Youth C Boys – 1st place (Youth Team & GB Development Squad)

Hannah Toward – Youth D Girls – 2nd place (Youth Team)

James Harwood – Youth D Boys – 2nd place (Youth Squad, Sutton)

Jonas Mueller-Doblies – Youth E Boys – 2nd place (Youth Squad, Guildford)

Ella Griffith – Youth B Girls – 3rd place (Youth Team)

Joshua Bruyns – Youth B Boys – 3rd place (Youth Team)

Katie Roberts – Youth D Girls – 3rd place (Youth Team)

Rhys Conlon – Youth D Boys – 3rd place (Youth Team)

Gemma Lees – Youth B Girls – 4th place (Youth Squad, Guildford)

Douwe Boesveld – Youth B Boys – 6th place (Youth Squad, Guildford)

Madeleine Grainger – Youth C Girls – 8th place (Youth Squad, Guildford)

Alexia Coburn – Youth B Girls – 13th place (Youth Squad, Guildford)

Freddie Somerville – Youth C Boys – 15th place (Youth Squad, Guildford)

Jessica Gale – Youth B Girls – 16th place (Youth Squad, Guildford)

James Cathrew – Youth B Boys – 16th place (Youth Squad, Guildford)

Camden Jones – Youth C Boys – 20th place (Youth Squad, Guildford)

Full results for all regions can be see here.

Round 2 will be hosted at High Sports, Brighton on Saturday 25th of February 2017.

For any media or sponsorship enquiries regarding the Craggy Island Youth Climbing Team, please contact Team Manager, Danielle Rushmer.


Posted in Craggy Island News, Guildford News, Sutton News | No Comments »

Guildford CLOSED for YCS on Saturday 28th of January 2017!

Saturday, January 21st, 2017 - Posted by Danie

Closed-Sign-1Our Guildford centre will be CLOSED on Saturday 28th of January 2017.

We are hosting Round 1 of the BMC Youth Climbing Series. You can see more info about this Regional competition series for youngsters by clicking here.

There will be no Kids Clubs, Mini Kids, Craghoppers or Member Entry on this day.

There will be route setting taking place all of the week prior to the event so some areas of the centre will closed off at various times. If you are planning a special journey, please be sure to call us on 01483 566880 to confirm that the area of the centre you intend to use is open and available.

The centre will be open as normal again on Sunday 29th of January and we look forward to welcoming you then.

Posted in 3 Star Membership, Craggy Island News, Guildford News, Sutton News | No Comments »

New ABZone for Guildford!

Friday, January 13th, 2017 - Posted by Danie

TrublueThere are changes a foot at Guildford this year starting with conversion of the ‘icebox’ to the ‘ABZone’, not just a name change, AB stands for Auto Belay – with 6 new TruBlue auto belay stations ready to install, the area is destined to become a mecca for endurance training and a new party venue for, well anyone who wants a party!

We will be painting this area to mimic the artists impression below, fitting a new range of volume (shapes) and adding new climbing holds throughout, creating a whole new exciting area of climbing.

For members – you’ll get a new area for endurance training or just the ability to climb on your own on a full range of graded routes. This is in response to our members suggestions highlighting a need for more activities when arriving alone, either when waiting for a climbing partner to arrive or for a complete session and by grouping all the auto belays in there own zone we’re hoping it will become an area where people will hook up with other climbers looking for a belay.

ABZone-VisualFor parties – we will now have a bookable party zone, where people can book the area for upto 12 kids (or adults) without the need for ropes training at the beginning of the session. You’ll be able to just clip on to the auto belay and off you go – which means you’ll get a lot more climbing done in your party.

We are looking to have the ABZone ready for use in the 2nd week of Feb. This means the area will be closed off for the week beginning 30th Jan.

Other developments are in the pipeline too so watch this space!

Posted in 3 Star Membership, Craggy Island News, Guildford News, Route Setting, Sutton News | No Comments »

Want to be a Climbing Instructor at Craggy Guildford…?

Thursday, October 20th, 2016 - Posted by Danie

Become an Instructor at Craggy Island!

Click here to BOOK ONLINE now!

Becoming a climbing instructor can be a great way of combining your love of the sport with earning some extra money during evenings and weekends.

If you’ve always enjoyed passing on your knowledge of climbing skills to friends and family then you’ll probably find Instructing a very natural step to take.  It’s also, perhaps, not as difficult a step to take as you may be anticipating!

There are, of course, the National Governing Body awards – Single Pitch Award (SPA) or Climbing Wall Award (CWA) which require a great deal of experience of instructing at a number of sites with many different groups before you’re really even eligible to complete the training.  Then there’s the lengthy consolidation period followed by an assessment…

Angela Gunning abseiling at Craggy IslandHowever, for less experienced instructors or for those at the very start of turning their passion into a career, here at Craggy we offer a Site-Specific Award.

This Award enables you to work at Craggy Island as an instructor.  There is the same training day, consolidation period and assessment day but this can all be undertaken at Craggy rather than needing considerable investment and countless days of driving here, there and everywhere.

Training is a 6 hour long course costing just £27 and this is completed in a day (usually 10:30-16:30).  During the training we cover many aspects of working life here at Craggy:

  • Full tour of the relevant areas of work including customer collection, kit storage and appropriate climbing areas for your group.
  • Training on all “best practice” safety skills so you’re not only topping up your own skill level but are passing those skills on correctly to your students.
  • Correct use of all safety equipment here at Craggy (numerous harnesses, helmets and belay devices).
  • Group management whilst working in the climbing area.
  • Child Protection training.
  • Basic rescue training (what to do when it goes a bit wrong on a session!)

Once you’ve completed your training, you’ll be provided with an individual action plan.  This will give detailed information on the length of your consolidation period (how many sessions you’ll need at “shadow”) and also the type of sessions we feel will be appropriate to your skill set.

When you have completed your “shadowing” you’ll then be ready to be assessed.  There are two levels to this; your first assessment will be with Marv, Centre Manager.  He will be checking to see that you’re up to standard with both your safety and customer service skills.  Should he feel there is something you need to work a little more on then this will be discussed and you’ll be given clear direction as to how to achieve competency on those things ready to be reassessed by him.

kids clubAfter your successful assessment with Marv you’ll be booked in for a full assessment with Danie, General Manager.  She’ll be checking that you’re safe to work within the centre and that you’re able to maintain our high standards of safety and enjoyment for all of our customers.  An assessment with Danie will usually take place on a Party as these can be the most challenging sessions from an instructor’s point of view.

Having successfully passed your assessment…  You’ll be ready to start working with live groups and earning money from something you genuinely love doing!

Next course will be running on Saturday 12th of November 2016.

Please call us on 01483 566880 to get yourself booked on or simply BOOK ONLINE by selecting “Site Spec. Training”. Please contact Marv Smith on for further information.

Posted in Craggy Island News, Guildford News | No Comments »

Craggy climber makes 1st Ascents in the Karakoram!

Tuesday, September 27th, 2016 - Posted by Danie

Drew (Left) during a previous expedition to the Karakorum in 2015

Drew (Left) during a previous expedition to the Karakorum in 2015

Regular Craggy climber and all-round adventurer, Drew Cook, is part of a small team from the British Alpine Club that have just made 2 first ascents in the Eastern Karkoram in Ladakh Northern India.

‘Lak Kangri’ (Eagle Ice Peak) 6266m (Alpine AD) and ‘Thrung-Ma Kangri’ (Protector Ice Peak) 6341m (Alpine AD).

All members of the party are safe and well. They’re currently resting in Leh, the capital of the province, before returning home to the UK soon.

Watch this space for an interview about this expedition with Drew coming soon.

He goes away on another expedition to Nepal in mid October so we’ll be speaking to him as soon as he’s back home and settled in.

Drew climbs regularly with us on Tuesday evenings – well, when he’s not away in the mountains that is! Feel free to say hello and have a natter if you see him. He used to also work as an instructor for us in the early days so who knows, he might have even taught you to climb!

Drew, we wish you and the rest of the team a safe journey home and look forward to hearing about all of your adventures.


Posted in 3 Star Membership, Climbing Holidays, Craggy Island News, Guildford News | No Comments »

New Volumes for Guildford!

Monday, September 26th, 2016 - Posted by Danie

Centre Manager Marv and his team of Duty Managers have been working hard to create these beautiful new volumes for us over the past few weeks!

We’re absolutely delighted with them and I’m sure you will be too when you get to climb on them.

We don’t like to waste things here at Craggy and these volumes have been made from some of the old panels that were removed when the centre was re-vamped last Summer. Makes us feel good to have recycled the old walls into lovely new ones again!

They’ll be featured on the new Comp Wall set which is happening this week at Guildford.

Posted in 3 Star Membership, Craggy Island News, Guildford News, Route Setting | No Comments »

Sutton Job Vacancy: Part Time Receptionist x 2

Thursday, July 14th, 2016 - Posted by Danie

Want to work as part of a great team in the sport you love?

We are looking to recruit 2 new members of staff to join the already awesome Craggy Sutton Team.  We are looking for a Weekend Receptionist and a Part Time Receptionist to fulfill vital roles within the centre.

As a Receptionist you will be responsible for assisting in the smooth running of the centre; serving customers and ensuring that everyone who comes in to the centre is kept safe and, most importantly, has a great time!

Full in-house training will be given on all aspects of the job including our bookings and membership system.

Are you….

  • Passionate about climbing?
  • Fun to be around and a great team player?
  • Eager to share climbing with others?
  • Keen to work in a bright, healthy environment?
  • Very excited about being able to climb and train for FREE?!

If this sounds like you then please get in touch by sending your CV and covering letter to

Closing date for applications is Friday 29th of July 2016.

Posted in 3 Star Membership, Craggy Island News, Guildford News, Sutton News | No Comments »

Craggy Sutton: Under new Management!

Wednesday, July 6th, 2016 - Posted by Danie

GarethAs any regular visitors to Sutton will already know, we’re delighted to have Gareth Davidson, our new Centre Manager now firmly in place!

We caught up with Gareth so you can find out a bit more about him and what his plans are for the centre:

So Gareth, how does it feel to be the new Centre Manager at Craggy Sutton?

It feels awesome. The past couple of months have been a baptism of fire, getting to know the crew and understanding the centre and the business as a whole. But I can honestly say I am relishing the challenge of this long term project that is Craggy Sutton.

Out with the old!What are your plans in the short-term?

My short term plans are to put things in place to enable us to build the long term vision I have for this centre and Craggy Island as a whole. The team have been decorating, brightening up the centre and making it more inviting for members and visitors – we have new tunes on the sound system and Yorkshire tea in the cafe!

And what about longer-term?

My longer term view is to make Craggy Sutton a hub for the community. The centre can mean so many different things to different people. But the one common thing we all have is our joy and passion for climbing. There has already been a few changes to the centre, I see these changes as laying the foundations for the BIG ideas I have for the centre as a whole. So watch this space!

New seating overlooking the climbing areas!What were you doing before taking on the Centre Manager role?

Before taking on the role as Centre Manager, I was working for Snow and Rock in the Buying and Merchandising team. I have quite a broad experience in my working life, having worked in the retail, public and the private sector. Also, being self-employed in the health and fitness industry.

How did you get in to climbing?

Well, before climbing I was a keen skateboarder and generally into sports. But I had a horrific injury which basically tore my left knee apart. I couldn’t do any sports, so my eldest brother took me climbing. We regularly traveled up to Stanage and also frequented different indoor walls. I took a break from climbing due to work commitments and having a family, but then the climbing bug gripped me again and I’ve not looked back since.

More new routes than ever due to a re-designed setting schedule!Tell us about your climbing, what do you enjoy and what are your goals?

For me, I love the process you go through that enables you to progress through your climbing. From sequencing the movements to teaching yourself different ways to approach and combat the problem you’re faced with. It’s a humbling process, and I can’t think of a better activity to fully immerse yourself into. The social side of climbing is also great, meeting people from all walks of life, brought together by the love of climbing and the outdoors. Climbing is hard, but that’s why I do it and keep coming back for more. I’m an advocate for good technique, I’d rather dial a movement or get the technique right. My goals, the goal is the same in whatever I do, just to get better in all that I
do… and have fun.

Anything else you want to tell us?

Come to Craggy Sutton for a warm welcome a friendly team and top notch bouldering and a mug of the finest Yorkshire Tea!

Posted in 3 Star Membership, Craggy Island News, Guildford News, Route Setting, Sutton News | No Comments »

Youth Climbing Team selection for 2016/2017 season!

Thursday, June 16th, 2016 - Posted by Danie

Matilda and Toby with their trophies at the International Youth Color Festival, Imst in June 2015

Matilda and Toby with their trophies at the International Youth Color Festival, Imst in June 2015

Would you like to try out for the Craggy Island Youth Climbing Team?  If so, here’s how to put yourself up for selection…

Download Youth Team Application Form here!

What do we offer members of the Youth Climbing Team?

The Craggy Island Youth Climbing Team is a select group of young climbers who either already show great form in competitions or have the potential to climb well in that environment.

Being a member of the Team opens up the following opportunities for young climbers:

  • Full support from Craggy Island – all of your climbing, tuition, coaching, advice and team kit is provided free of charge.  The only things that we do not cover the cost of are personal climbing equipment and travel to competitions as we feel it is very important that parents are involved in their child’s climbing too and ask that they support their child in attending the competitions that they choose to.
  • Team members climb for free at all Craggy Island centres.  We also encourage parents to be involved by offering them free climbing when they come in with their child – to either supervise, belay or climb with them.  If parents are not climbers already then we will offer you a Beginner Course or Lead Climbing Course so you can have a thorough understanding of what your child is undertaking.
  • Members of the team are still encouraged to attend our Kids Club if they wish as we believe that climbing should be about fun first and fore-most and want to ensure that all of our young climbers maintain a healthy attitude towards both their climbing and the other youngsters that they share their love of the sport with.  Attendance to our Kids Club is provided free of charge in this instance.
  • Weekly 2-hour coaching sessions are provided by our in-house team – Danie Rushmer, Team Manager & Coach, Mark Croxall, Head Coach, Howard Blyth, Coach and Graeme Harwood, Coach.  All of our coaches have a huge level of experience as individuals and between them are able to provide a diverse and high level of advice on all aspects of climbing, training and competing.  With their involvement also reaching out to the GB Junior Team and BMC National and Regional Academies this is one of the most experienced coaching teams available to a non-national team here in the UK.
  • In addition to the sessions provided on a weekly basis we also call in other highly regarded coaches for additional sessions.  The most recent of which was provided by Ian Dunn, GB Junior Team Manager who ran a day-long workshop with the team looking at warming up, performance analysis, lead climbing and core strength.
  • Our coaching team also attend significant competitions and events to support the team.  This is also provided free of charge within the UK and by arrangement in Europe.  Whilst attending competitions and events our coaches are able to provide assistance with warming up, preparation, route-reading, advice on specific moves or problems and assistance in making sure youngsters are in the right place at the right time!
Team member Miles Graham competing at the BMC YCS

Team member Miles Graham competing at the BMC YCS

Download Youth Team Application Form here!

The format for Selection this year is different to previous years. 

Anyone wishing to be considered for Team will need to complete a Youth Team Application form. Once completed, please email to or drop in at Reception for attention of Danie. Closing date for applications is Wednesday 6th of July 2016.

Successful applicants will then be invited to a Selection Day on Saturday 9th of July 2016 at 10:30-13:00. Further details will be provided as appropriate. There is no charge for the Selection Day.

All children born between 2000 and 2009 are invited to apply. This will be Youth A, Youth B, Youth C, Youth D and Youth E for events during late 2016 and 2017.

The Youth Team after Round 3 of the BMC YCS 2016

The Youth Team after Round 3 of the BMC YCS 2016

The selected Youth Team for 2016/2017 will then be announced on Wednesday 13th of July.  All attendees will be informed via email whether they have been selected or not on that day.  If you are not selected, we will provide specific feedback as to what you can improve on and how best to develop your climbing.

Please Note:  Team trainings and benefits will not start until 1st of September 2016 for new members!  You will be required to continue using Craggy in a ‘normal’ manner until then.

If you have any questions or require further information, please contact Danie via email on

Posted in Craggy Island News, Guildford News, Kids Club, Sutton News | No Comments »

New: Junior Social Session at Guildford!

Thursday, June 2nd, 2016 - Posted by Danie

32With climbing becoming ever more popular with young climbers we’re introducing a brand new session – just for them!

Starting Friday 10th of June 2016!

Our Junior Social will run every Friday evening from 7pm-9pm – priced at just £5.00. The session is for young climbers aged 14-16 years who have passed their Junior Competency Test and Registered as members here at Craggy Island, Guildford.

There will be an instructor on hand to offer advice and guidance but this is not a “supervised” session and is only suitable for competent young climbers.

If you’re unsure whether you’re Registered or suitable for this session then please call us on 01483 566880 before coming along, just to be sure.

Posted in Craggy Island News, Guildford News, Kids Club | No Comments »

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