Frequently Asked Questions
We've put together answers to questions that you may have about the Church Tower Abseil.
If you still have any questions then please get in touch with the Church Office .
Q – How much sponsorship do I have to raise?
A – To cover the costs of the event and help raise money for Church Development Project we are asking each participant to raise a minimum of £200. This money has to be raised BEFORE the 7th September 2019.
Q – How tall is the church tower?
A – Approximately 20m tall with fantastic views over Bassingbourn.
Q – Who is organising the event
A – The event is being organised by Bassingbourn Parish Church. The abseil itself will be controlled by our partners Abseil Events UK (AEUK)/Eight Point Two (8.2) who specialise in this type of event and will provide all the equipment and instructors on the day.
Q – Why are there weight restrictions
A – Larger people need to be fitted with a chest harness in addition to the waist harness and AEUK/8.2 recommend a 17 stone (108kg) upper limit for abseils. There is also the need to climb over the tower wall to get to the abseil; therefore they must have ease of movement in order to do this. A lot will depend on an individual’s build so please get in touch if you are over 17 stone and would like to participate.
AEUK/8.2 recommend a lower limit of 6 stone (38kg) for abseils and they reserve the right to prevent someone from doing an event if they are too small, and the weather is inclement, i.e. windy. Small people can get blown around more. This is not a frequent occurrence.
Q – What is the minimum age for participants?
A – The main restriction is a weight requirement of 6 stone and will therefore depend on the individual. Any abseilers under the age of 18 will need to have a parental consent form signed by a parent or guardian.
Q – What is the maximum age for participants?
A – These activities are mentally & physically challenging, but we will not stop any older person from having a go if they believe themselves to be fit enough. If there is any doubt, advise that the participant should ask their doctor.
Q – Can people with disabilities take part in the event?
A – Bassingbourn Parish Church and AEUK/8.2 are very keen to provide the opportunity for anyone with a disability with the opportunity to take part in the event however provision of abseiling for people with some disabilities can be a very specialist area, requiring additional technical equipment and knowledge as well as taking a great deal more time and instructors.
Please contact us if you would like to discuss this further.
Q – What to wear during my abseil?
A – Sport type outer wear is ideal. Lace up trainers, jogging/training trousers, full arm length t-shirt would be best as they offer ease of movement and some protection from grazes. Avoid very loose clothing – scarves, neck jewellery, rings and hooped ear rings. Although we are hopeful for warm weather it is advisable to ensure you are warm when waiting.
Q – Can people participate whilst in fancy dress?
A – Probably…most costumes are fine, and the harness, helmet, etc. can be fitted over the costume. However we reserve the right to not allow someone in fancy dress if we think the costume will compromise the safety of the participant. Please bring your costume in on the day, but also to bring normal clothes.
Q – Can someone participate if they’ve recently had an operation / injury?
A – If AEUK/8.2 have any concerns about a person’s health then we will request that the person seeks their doctors’ approval. Ask them to explain that the harness will go around their hips and waist, and all their weight will be held by this harness. Participants usually know themselves whether this will feel too uncomfortable for them.
Q – Is the equipment safe?
A – From AEUK/8.2 “All of our equipment, especially ropes, are stored, maintained and replaced, as for the standard practice recommended by the manufacturers. All equipment is checked frequently and retired if there is any damage to any part. The equipment we use has an unspecified working life, and in his role as a technical advisor, Ian Loombe is qualified to make any inspections needed.”
Q – Does AEUK/8.2 use qualified instructors?
A – AEUK/8.2 only employ qualified staff when used in instructor roles, and we are governed by the MLTE (Mountain Leader Training Board- England) and the BMC (British Mountaineering Council). Ian Loombe is a member of AMI (Association of Mountaineering Instructors). Please look at www.mltb.org and www.aala.org.uk for more information. All of our instructors are First Aid qualified; they must be, in order to maintain their instructor qualifications.
Q – How will the event run?
A – There are 5 basic stages to the event which are: