Responsibilities of Members
It’s common sense really but needs stating …. Members agree to – .
1. Be fully responsible for their own safety, and not act in a manner that may jeopardize the safety of others. If a member has any doubts about their ability on a walk, it is always advisable to contact the Walk Leader before setting out.
2. Ensure that when taking part in a Footloose walk they are properly equipped with suitable footwear, wet weather clothing, hats and gloves, rucksacks and extra layers for warmth, walking poles if needed and enough food and water for the day.
3. Assess from their own standpoint the implications of the weather forecast on chosen walk days, for example – probability of mist, ice or snow, and prepare accordingly.
4. Maintain their own simple first aid kit and carry a compass and head torch. Maps of the walk area are not essential, except for Walks’ Leaders, but will always be found useful.
5. If bringing dogs on a Footloose walk, keep them on a lead where this is required by public notice where livestock is present, or when requested by the Walk Leader, and to ensure they do not create a hazard or nuisance for Group members.
6. Be alert to other walkers, particularly those who may have dropped back. All walkers should be especially vigilant to prevent those in the rear from becoming detached or lost.
7. Let the Backmarker know if they plan to drop behind (for a comfort stop etc.), so that they do not lose contact with the group.
8. Any member who starts a walk and for any reason decides not to continue, it is essential that they notify the Walk Leader or the Backmarker of their decision. Any walker who is no longer in communication with either the Leader or Backmarker, will be deemed to have left the group and to have decided to make their own way back.
9. At the start of each calendar year, Members will be required to sign a Disclaimer Form declaring their personal responsibility for their own safe conduct within the limits of their capabilities, absolving Footloose Walking Group from any liability whatsoever for their personal safety, or the consequences of any incident or accident that may occur. These Disclaimers will be kept on file and will be renewable annually.
To carry in, or on their rucksack, Emergency Contact Details, i.e. those of a relative or friend who can be contacted in the unlikely event of a major trauma.
Responsibilities of Walk Leaders
1. It is essential for the Leader to have a map and compass and preferably a mobile phone for contact, plus an adequate first aid kit.
2. Unless they know the route well and the weather is clear, it is always desirable to reconnoitre a route beforehand, noting points of possible risk or hazard and options, if the weather turns out to be unsuitable for the intended walk. This would be an important matter in the event of any incident.
3. Provide a short briefing at the start of the walk describing the route and the general terrain to be covered, highlighting any possible hazards and options that members should consider before they start.
4. Lead from the front so that more energetic walkers do not get too far ahead or out of contact distance.
5. Appoint a Backmarker on the day at that briefing, with particular instruction to halt the walk Leader as needed, so that the whole group stays in sight. It is the Leader’s role to keep the group together but the Backmarker should also have a map and know the planned route. The need to maintain visual contact with the whole group, is particularly important in broken or wooded country and in bad weather.
6. To carry copies of the Footloose Disclaimer Form for any new or guest walkers. These must be signed by the guest and collected by the Leader and forwarded to the Membership Secretary. Leaders should attempt to get feedback from guests.
7. Submit a very brief synopsis of the day to the Website Coordinator – numbers, weather and any incidents.
(Updated 2018 )