Hill and Moorland Leader Assessment
The Hill and Moorland Leader is a nationally recognised qualification that is administered by Mountain Training. This qualification is ideal for walkers who want to learn the skills required for effective group leadership in the hill and moorland areas of the UK and Ireland.
Despite it being an assessment, we strive to make the three days fun and a positive learning experience.
Who is it for ?
The Hill and Moorland Leader Assessment course is for those who have already completed their Hill and Moorland Leader Training. The award is favoured by teachers, DofE leaders and voluntary groups who want to use terrain more demanding or remote than Lowland Leaders but have no need to venture into more demanding mountainous terrain that requires a Mountain Leader qualification.
Our Hill and Moorland Leader assessments cover all aspects of the award over the three days.
We are outside most of the day and every day. On the evening of the second day we undertake the night navigation assessment.
To help candidates prepare thoroughly we issue a home study paper and comprehensive joining instructions. These have lots of suggested reading, links to videos and other material to help individuals become thoroughly conversant with all aspects of the syllabus.
The Hill and Moorland Leader assessment course is largely practical in nature although, in addition to the home research paper, we undertake several theoretical exercises. There is significant emphasis on navigation and party leadership to deliver a safe and enjoyable hill experience.
We don’t specify exactly what we do or where we go each day as a good mountain professional matches the objectives for the day with the weather, the group and other factors. Discussing what we do on a day allows us to explore the important skills of planning and decision making which you will use every day you are leading in the hills.
Day 1 – Introductions you, us and the course, followed by a hill day looking at navigation skills, access and the environment and emergency procedures.
Day 2 – Hill day concentrating on navigation, leadership and group management, followed by an evening of night navigation. We may stay on the hill throughout so plan appropriately.
Day 3 – A slightly shorter hill day concentrating on leading a flowing walk followed by results and individual debriefs.
During the course, whilst on the hill, you will be asked to deliver a short talk (about 5 minutes) on a topic of your choosing, but related to the local environment (ecology, geology, history etc) or covering a relevant skill.
Detailed guidance notes on the syllabus are available here.
- Location: Peak District
- Cost: £ 250 per person
- Duration: 3 days
- Ratio: 1:4
- Level: Instructor
Bespoke Dates and Locations
If there are four or more of you that want training or assessment, and you would like some different dates or a specific location, please contact the office and we will arrange some dates to suit your diary.
The course will meet at 0900 in The Sir William hotel, Grindleford in the Hope valley.
Grindleford has ample free parking, good bus and train links to Sheffield and a good train link to Manchester.
You will need to bring all the clothing and equipment you need to lead a group for multiple consecutive days on the hill. The equipment that you choose to carry, is part of the assessment.
A suggested kit list is contained in the joining instructions.
We give some suggestions below, but more detailed suggestions together with a host of helpful links and videos are contained in our Hill and Moorland Leader Assessment Joining Instructions.
The Hill and Moorland Leader Award Handbook contains all the details of the syllabus, the remit of the award and a skills check list.
The official handbook of Mountain Training’s walking schemes is:
Mountain Training handbook – Volume 1. Hillwalking. Steve Long. Mountain Training.
You require sufficient fitness to be able to spend 3 days walking and have plenty spare to cope with any emergencies within the group. Regular full days of hillwalking are the best preparation which also increases your experience and skill level.
In order to attend a Hill and Moorland Leader assessment course you must meet the following requirements:
- Be registered specifically for the Hill and Moorland Leader scheme with Mountain Training.
- Completed a training course or been granted exemption by Mountain Training.
- Have logged a minimum of 40 Quality Hillwalking Days in at least three different upland areas of the UK and Ireland.
- Ideally hold a valid 16 hour first aid certificate relevant to working away from habitation. You can attend a course without a valid certificate, but the HML qualification will not be awarded until you have completed a first aid course.
This Beyond the Edge course is non-residential to allow you to select between a thermarest or 5 star hotel as you require. There is lots of accommodation in the Hope Valley and we recommend The Sir William which offers BtE clients a discounted rate and most courses start from here. Other options are listed on our Accommodation page.
If you are struggling to find something or want something special, contact the office and we will endeavour to assist.
How do I book ?
The best way is via this webpage. Choose the date from the options on the above and then submit your booking and pay.
For bespoke events get in touch first so we can check diaries and if required give you a quote. Get in touch by either calling the office on 01142 631 155 or emailing us.
Does the course include accommodation ?
Not usually! We prefer to let you choose where you will be most comfortable. This may be in a tent or in a luxury hotel.
In the Peak District we work out of the The Sir William hotel. This is a comfortable Inn with stunning views over the Hope valley and it also serves great food (try the game pie if it’s on!). We recommend that you stay here as they are well versed in looking after walkers and climbers and it’s a 30 second commute from the breakfast table to our meeting room!
They can be contacted at email@example.com which is best as it allows them to answer when they have a spare few minutes or alternatively 01433 630 303 and ask to speak to Helen.
If this doesn’t suit you for whatever reason further accommodation options can be found on our accommodation page.
For bespoke courses and events we can arrange whatever you desire from a bivouac under the stars to a spa hotel.
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You will find all of the most frequently asked questions and their answers on our FAQ webpage.