Extreme Ventures - Brighton Indoor Climbing Wall & Outdoor Rock Climbing Specialist
Extreme Ventures - Brighton Indoor Climbing Wall & Outdoor Rock Climbing Specialist

Southern Sandstone Leaders Award

This local rock climbing award is a site specific award set up by a group of outdoor centres, rock climbing providers and climbing walls in the South East of England.


It was originally set up as the Rock Climbing Instructors Award did not cover all the elements of leadership and supervision required for teaching the Southern Sandstone of Kent and Sussex.


The SSLA had a large emphasis on group management and goes further than the SPA in this realm as it also teaches how to deal with the groups at the top of the rocks (lowering off is prohibited on  Southern Sandstone). The SSLA does not cover natural protection such as nuts and cams as these are not used on this type of rock.


There are still many providers that will accept this award in the South East but it is worth noting that it is not nationally recognised and it is up the to providers to choose whether they accept this award.

This training and assessment programme is relevant to the Sandstone Outcrops of the Weald of Sussex and Kent, including such venues as Harrisons, Bowles, Stone Farm, High Rocks and the smaller venues listed in the current guide. It DOES NOT cover any other venues, sandstone or otherwise, and does NOT include the chalk climbs mentioned in the Sandstone Guide book.

The award may be accepted by some indoor walls including Extreme Ventures, but this is entirely at their discretion. You will normally be asked to produce your pass page, 1st aid certificate, up to date logbook and possibly public liability insurance and supporting documents such as risk assessments. A phone call to the relevant wall will make this clear, as different venues have different rules. In all cases, you will normally be asked to undergo an induction session as well.


However, the BMC/MLTE do recommend it as a suitable “site specific” scheme. For 30 years the Sandstone Leaders Award was run by the Outdoor Education Departments of the Local Education Authorities in the South East, to offer quality training for their teachers and youth workers. In recent years, these departments have decided they can no longer administer the award, and it was in danger of disappearing altogether. In 2008, a Sandstone Award steering group was formed to counter this. Members were drawn from a wide range of backgrounds, including: private outdoor education companies, educational establishments, charities, youth organisations & MLTE courses providers. New course notes, a new syllabus and assessment procedure were drawn up in the autumn of 2008, and the look award launched in 2009. In 2014 Bowles outdoor centre took on the administration of this award and a new website was created as well as some updates to the syllabus.

Useful Information

  • From 18 years old
  • Maximum 8 people per Instructor
  • Activities are located Harrison Rocks near Tunbridge Wells
  • Consent form required for all participants
  • Booking Subject to availability
  • Maximum weight 16 stone for roped activities
  • Please bring any medication if required i.e inhaler e.t.c

All prices include Insurance, Fully Qualified, Experienced & CRB Checked Instructor, Equipment, and entrance/hire fees.


All activities have been risk assessed and include Emergency Action and Operating Procedures. Extreme Ventures fully complies with regulating bodies including Health and Safety, National Governing Bodies and Adventure Activity Licensing Authority

Contact Details


01732 446252


Opening times

Office Opening Hours:

7 days a week

10:00 - 20:00


Outdoor Climbing Harrison Rocks:

Spring - Autumn 10:00 - 22:00

Winter 10:00 - 17:00

Open Public & Bank Holiday


Indoor Climbing Brighton:

Advanced Instructed Bookings available 7 days a week from 10:00 - 20:00

Closed Public & Bank Holidays

Freelance Staff Required




Outdoor Climbing

Harrison Rocks



Brighton Indoor Climbing Stanley Deason Leisure Centre




Start: Immediately

End: N/A


Freelance Staff required for mostly weekend work, occasional weekday work.




Are you looking for a great place to work in exciting, adventurous surroundings with excellent personal climbing on your doorstep!


Outdoor Climbing Instructors are based near Tunbridge Wells at Harrison Rocks.


Indoor Climbing instructors required at our indoor climbing wall in Brighton at the Stanley Deason Leisure Centre.




  • Outdoor Instructors: RCI or SSA
  • Indoor Instructors: CWI qualified staff
  • First Aid Qualified: Minimum 16 hours
  • Own Car required

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