Jonathan Conville Memorial Trust

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COVID-19 Update

Due to the current Covid-19 situation and restrictions around international travel, Plas y Brenin National Outdoor Centre and the Jonathan Conville Memorial Trust have taken the difficult decision to cancel the Alpine Mountaineering courses scheduled to take place in Argentiere, France from 6 June.

In addition, the North Wales Alpine Preparation course scheduled for 1-2 May is being cancelled as we envisage that we will be unable to offer shared accommodation at this time.

Plas y Brenin will be notifying all affected participants of the decision. Deposits made by participants who deferred their places on the summer Alpine Courses from 2020 to 2021, will be refunded and you will be offered first refusal to hold a place on the 2022 courses, if you so wish.

With regards to the Alpine Preparation Course held at Plas y Brenin, we are evaluating the possibility of delivering one or two of these courses later in 2021, potentially in September or October. If this is feasible, those who applied for the May 2021 course will automatically go through the selection process and would be offered a place if selected. There will be no places held over into 2022 for this course.

We will continually reassess the situation as it unfolds. We, like you, hope that we can soon return to some sort of normality, and we hugely look forward to welcoming participants onto our courses once is it is safe and legal to do so.

The current course programme covers the following areas: Alpine Mountaineering, Alpine Preparation and Scottish Winter Mountaineering.

The courses are administered and run by Plas y Brenin staff on behalf of the Trust. Places are made available to individuals aged 18-30 who are passionate about pursuing outdoor adventure.

 

Alpine Mountaineering

Plas y Brenin National Outdoor Centre and the Jonathan Conville Memorial Trust have taken the difficult decision to cancel the Alpine Mountaineering courses scheduled for 2021 due to COVID-19 and restrictions on international travel. All affected participants will be contacted directly. 

In normal times, the Trust offers subsidised places on 3-day Alpine Mountaineering courses in Chamonix, co-ordinated by Plas y Brenin and the Mountain Training Trust. The intention is to provide a top-class introduction to Alpine mountaineering at the lowest possible cost. It is not possible to cover Alpine mountaineering in great detail over three days, but an introduction to the basic considerations, like the use of equipment, glacier travel, crevasse rescue will be provided. In order to provide the optimum learning experience, these courses are run at a ratio of one guide for every three trainees.

Each course place costs in excess of £300, yet trainees are charged only £150. This year the Jonathan Conville Memorial Trust will provide over £20,000 to subsidise its courses, and the BMC and Mountain Training Trust provide additional financial support. As a charity, the Mountain Training Trust provides administration and will deliver these courses at no extra cost to trainees. The minimum age for applicants is 18 years and the maximum age is 30. Detailed course notes can be found here.

 

North Wales Alpine Preparation

Plas y Brenin National Outdoor Centre and the Jonathan Conville Memorial Trust have taken the difficult decision to cancel the North Wales Alpine Preparation course scheduled for 2021 due to COVID-19.

The purpose of this two-day course based in Wales is to provide a top-class introduction to Alpine mountaineering at the lowest possible cost. It is not possible to cover Alpine mountaineering in great detail over two days, but an introduction to the basic considerations, like the use of equipment, glacier travel, crevasse rescue can be provided.

This is a stand-alone course. You do not need to have, nor intended to complete the Jonathan Conville Memorial Trust Alpine-based course to be able to apply for this course.

Each course place costs over £200, yet trainees are charged only £90.

As a charity, the Mountain Training Trust will provide administration and deliver the courses at no extra cost to the trainees. If you would like to support the Mountain Training Trust in its work, please click here to find out how you can help.

The minimum age for applicants is 18 years and the maximum age is 30. For detailed course notes, please click here.

 

Scottish Winter Mountaineering

Updated 29 September 2020: The Jonathan Conville Memorial Trust has, with a heavy heart, decided to cancel its 2021 winter course programme in Scotland.

For more information on the cancellation, please read the statement from the Trust here.

Applications for the 2022 programme will be open from 1 September 2021 to 31 October 2021.

These courses are aimed at those who have not done any sort of course in the winter mountains before but are experienced summer hillwalkers and climbers. This winter, the Trust is offering subsidised winter training courses based in the Cairngorms. The courses are specially designed to give a sound introduction to the techniques needed for moving on snow and ice – both in Britain in winter and in the Alps. The course will include the use of crampons and ice axes, belaying and rope work, avalanche assessment and other topics related to winter mountaineering.

These courses are also very generously supported by the Scottish Mountaineering Trust, a charity that provides grants to projects and organisations that encourage and increase the public’s enjoyment of mountainous regions, especially the mountainous regions of Scotland.

The courses are based at Ardenbeg Outdoor Centre in Grantown-on-Spey. They last for two days and students must arrive the night before the course is due to start. The course fee includes accommodation (two nights), food and all essential in-course transport. Please note that should you wish to arrive early or stay for extra days, accommodation will be available (subject to availability) at Ardenbeg for an additional cost. Further information will be sent to successful applicants.

WE'RE REOPENINGWe're returning to outdoor adventure in line with government guidance, with some activities already available!