19 Jul

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Our Silver Duke of Edinburgh’s groups were lucky to have much better weather conditions for their 3 day qualifying expedition than our recent Gold groups (click here if you missed that particular water themed experience!). Mr Taylor, our DofE manager, can tell us more about how our Silver groups fared..

The Derwent Heritage Trail ~ Silver Qualifying Expedition 2nd, 3rd & 4th July 2019

At last, a positive forecast – dry weather and the temperature steadily rising over the following days. Two very different groups were to follow the same route but from different directions, staying on the same campsites on different nights and crossing (hopefully) somewhere in the middle.

Group 1 started their trek on the flat, following the Kinder foothills along Ladybower Reservoir to Bamford, whilst Group 2 would travel from Rowsley through the majestic estate of Chatsworth to camp at Calver. Group 1’s focus was on animals and the wildlife whilst Group 2 were developing self organisational and independence skills.

Day 1 was very successful for both groups as each reached their campsites on time and in a reasonable state. Developing blisters had been dealt with and there were only sore feet, back and shoulders to contend with. Food and drink cooked by the students and a good rest seemed to make the day’s efforts easier to bear.

Day 2 followed with nice weather once more and as usual a slow start, as the stiffness in muscles took a while to ease. The plan came to fruition. The 2 groups passed near Hathersage, Group 2 looking spritely and full of beans, whilst Group 1 were starting to lag a little – both still had some way to go. The good weather was beginning to take its toll. No point in dwelling though, the groups had to push on – more rests meant getting to the campsite later, so best to be positive, every step forward means a step closer. Time to release the New Bridge spirit!

Campsites reached, food and drink taken, ready to go again(ish).

Day 3, the final push. Breakfast, pack up and on the move – Group 1 to Chatsworth..

..Group 2 passing along the Ladybower Reservoir to finish at its source (travelling independently whilst being monitored and met by staff at certain checkpoints)..

Each group faced their own particular challenges. Both agreed they were not great fans of walking and carrying a big bag full of ‘stuff’ but enjoyed the experience, challenge and camaraderie of the groups. There were highs and lows as some spotted and interacted with wildlife they wouldn’t ordinarily have seen while others chose to explore the interesting (entertaining) effects of the electrical fences.

Well done everybody on the completion of this very successful expedition.

Gavin Taylor
DofE Manager

Congratulations everyone on successfully completing your Silver expedition!! We’re extremely grateful once again to our fantastic staff for supporting and encouraging our young people and making the expedition possible…and they’ll be doing it all again next week with our Bronze DofE groups!!

You can view all the pictures of the expedition in our Facebook album here and you can find out more about the DofE Award Scheme at New Bridge here and read about all our previous expeditions.