Nights Away

Time to go away

Nights Away Notification Form

Planning a nights away experience? Don’t forget to submit a notification for approval seven days before the event takes place.

Nights Away Approval

All Nights Away Notifications for Nights Away activities will be approved directly by the District Commissioner or Deputy District Commissioner and must be submitted via our form to ensure all the information provided on the form complies to the requirements for Nights Away.

To run a Nights Away experience a nights away permit is required. There are different levels of permit that allow you to take young people on different types of residential experiences.

There are four categories of permit POR 9.57:

  • Indoor – for staying in a building that has built in lighting and cooking facilities, toilets plumbed into a waste disposal system (i.e. a cess pit, storage tank or mains drains) and running drinking water.
  • Campsite – for staying at a site that has toilets plumbed into a waste disposal system (eg. a cess pit, storage tank or mains drains) and access to running drinking water. Those holding a Camp Site Permit may also run indoor residential events.
  • Green Field – for staying at any site where any of the above facilities do not exist – for example, a summer camp on a farmer’s field. Those holding a Green Field Permit may lead residential events in the other three categories.
  • Lightweight Expedition – for staying at any site for not more than one night before moving on. The core activity is a form of expedition, not residential, and all the equipment is transported with the participants. eg. QSA/DofE hikes, expedition hikes, canoe expeditions.

All Scout Activities including nights away and adventurous activities require a written risk assessment POR 9.4. For more support on writing a risk assessment check out the Scouts website.

Risk Assessments

Everything we do involves an element of risk, so we have to have plans in place to manage this. 

We all do risk assessments or safety checks everyday, for example, when we cross the road. We choose an appropriate place to cross, look both ways and make a decision about whether it’s safe to cross.

We know that young people learn by doing. Activities encourage the development of young people and they can feel a huge sense of achievement in completing them. We want to provide EXCITEMENT but not DANGERADVENTURE but not HAZARD. Click here to find out more about completing risk assessments.

As a district, we have provided some template risk assessments.

Nights away permit scheme

The nights away permit scheme is an internal assessment scheme designed to ensure that all those leading nights away events for young people within Scouting have the skills, experience and personal suitability to do so.

To gain a permit you will need to complete an assessment with a nights away advisor.

The permit scheme

You can find full details of the nights away permit scheme in the factsheets below. These include factsheets for specific roles such as commissioner and applicant. 

There is also an assessment checklist that the nights away adviser uses to assess any applicants for nights away permits.

There are some FAQ’s available to support nights away.

Emergency procedures

The Purple card provides support for safe Scouting and guidance in the procedures for dealing with an emergency.


Find full details on InTouch, the system used to manage communications at all events and activities within Scouting. This includes a step-by-step approach guiding you through the process of setting up an InTouch system as well further guidance on areas and issues to look at within this and suggestions on how these can be managed.

Young person nights away form

Use this editable parental consent form for use with either residential or non-residential events.

Nights away event passport

Nights Away Event Passports exist to enable young people in the Scout and Explorer Scout sections, who are deemed suitably skilled, to undertake a nights away activity as a peer group.