Skip to main content

Keeping our buildings safe and secure

Guidance for the maintenance of Scout premises


Scout premises need to be safe and ready for when face-to-face activities can restart. We’ve developed some guidance to help those responsible for properties to decide how best to maintain and prepare their buildings and equipment for use. 

Who’s responsible for this?  

In most cases, the responsibility of the premises will sit with the Trustees (Executive Committee), although sometimes the practical management itself is delegated. In this case, the Trustees need to oversee the agreed maintenance along with the relevant Commissioner (for example District Commissioner for Group and District owned properties) who has responsibility for the volunteers who will be involved in undertaking the tasks. 

The responsible Trustees and Commissioner need to make sure that any maintenance activity can be undertaken safely, and in line with the current government advice and guidance. This must be included in a risk assessment (or multiple risk assessments) and the decisions documented also. The risk assessment may be supported by a set of procedures which will show volunteers and staff what and how they are to do the tasks needed to run safely.

Things to consider 

As a premises owner/manager, there’ll be a number of questions to ask as part of their risk assessment: 

  • Is the property in a safe state and is it secure? 
  • Does the property meet any regulatory requirements for safety? 
  • Is there any maintenance required to ensure it is safe for users? 
  • Is there any maintenance required to prevent deterioration? 
  • Are there any tasks which can be done safely and in line with the government guidance, given that the property is currently not in frequent use? 
  • Is there other equipment which is in need of maintenance? 

When working through these questions you’ll need to think about who will complete the tasks, how will they be done, and when will they be done. Each of these questions will require you to think through the implementation of the government advice on social distancing and limiting the spread of COVID-19. Maintenance must not be undertaken by those deemed high risk, with underlying medical conditions or those who have been in contact with COVID-19 within the timeframes for isolation stipulated by the government.  

Other considerations  

Protecting yourself and others whilst maintaining safe premises through robust hygiene arrangements, social distancing and following guidance for face coverings will help stop the spread of COVID-19. In some circumstances you may have people challenge what you are doing, so make sure you are following the guidance and seek support from your line manager if needed. If you have any contact or challenge from external agencies such as your local authority please follow the guidance in Knowing what to do if something goes wrong’. 


We’ve provided a handy checklistto cover some specific things which you’ll need to ensure are checked and safe before the property is used. You’ll need to work through how, when and who does these tasks. Once you're ready to open, you'll need to download your unique building QR code and display this at your location.

In addition you’ll need to consider specifics relating to COVID-19, this will include the following: 

You’ll also need to be clear on what to do if someone displays symptoms while they are at the meeting place or after they have left, and then follow government guidance.