Guidelines for Locally Organised National Events (LONE)
These guidelines were updated in February 2021. These guidelines are designed to provide better insight into all future LONE events, ensuring all are planned, managed and delivered appropriately, and give Scouts the best experiences.
What is a LONE event?
Any event which is organised outside of UK Headquarters and branded as ‘National’ or ‘UK’ needs to gain approval to be branded this way. This approval comes from the Events and Contingents Sub-Group, with delegated authority from the Strategy and Delivery Committee.
These guidelines will tell you how to apply for approval to run such an event.
Organising the event
The actual organisation and operation of a LONE event does not differ much from the arrangements that are appropriate for a major County/Area/Region or District event. It's assumed that those applying to run a national event will have had suitable experience at County or District level (if, indeed, they have not already contributed to the running of a national event) and so, will be generally familiar with what’s required.
In most cases, a local team representing a Region, County or District will identify a particular event for which they have expertise and which they consider will be attractive and valuable to members across the UK. At this stage, advice and help may be available via the Information Centre.
Before starting the planning process for a LONE event, we recommend that the organiser contacts the Information Centre, to check that the event will not clash with another similar event.
The process of completing the application form will also help you identify some key organisational challenges for your event.
Supporting the Scout Programme
All events which are approved through this process should be providing value to our members and supporting the Scout Programme. Events for young people should be challenging, relevant and rewarding, and support young people to develop skills for life. Events for adult volunteers should help support the delivery of a quality programme.
Where possible we would like the events to expand their reach to all sections from Beavers through to Scout Network, so please consider how your event will engage members from all sections and include this on the application form. This could be directly taking part in the event, or being involved indirectly (e.g. via activities or challenges in their section).
Any events which are open to members of the Scout Network can be advertised nationally through communications to Scout Network members and the volunteers supporting this section.
The application process
Before starting any detailed planning, the approval of the relevant County/Area/Scottish Regional Commissioner(s) must have been gained.
UK Headquarters approval is then applied for. Applications should be made for one event at a time, and be submitted a minimum of nine months and a maximum of 18 months before each event.
The process of completing the form will highlight some of the key organisational challenges that need to be addressed in the planning stage, such as the scale and location of the operation, the need for overnight accommodation (if any), the involvement of Girlguiding and/or a local Agency/Authority/Club, and so on.
The form needs to be submitted, so it can be approved by the Events and Contingent Sub-Group or escalated to the Strategy and Delivery Committee depending on the perceived risk. Approvals will be given on the condition that the evaluation of the previous event (if appropriate) doesn’t raise any concerns. If the evaluation of the previous event has not yet been received, the approval will be conditional, and if there are any significant concerns, it may be withdrawn.
Marketing of the event as a national/UK event can start after approval is granted.
An approved national event is very much a ‘shop window’ for the Scouts, and it is important that the highest standards of administration and operation are in evidence throughout.
It's important to understand the responsibilities of the County (or equivalent) who are supporting the event, this includes following all Scout policies, financial agreements and safety.
The Financial Arrangements
The County/Area/Scottish Region organising the LONE event are responsible for underwriting the cost of the event.
Most approved national events are planned on a “no profit/no loss” basis. It is important to identify all the costs involved in the event, and to set a realistic fee to cover all those costs.
No sponsorship arrangements should be sought or entered into without the prior approval of both the County/Counties (or equivalent) concerned and of UKHQ.
All activities must be carried out in full compliance with the Association’s rules as outlined in the current edition of Policy, Organisation and Rules (POR).
Advice relating to insurance can be provided by Unity Insurance Services.
Any indemnity sought by a hosting club or authority must be referred to UKHQ via the Information Centre.
Evaluation of the event
A structured evaluation of the event will need to be completed, and a template can be found below. This will be really useful for future organisers of the event or similar events.
Event organisers should complete and submit the evaluation within two months of the event finishing. The evaluation should be endorsed by the relevant County Commissioners (or equivalents).
The evaluation process helps the Events and Contingent Sub Group and Strategy and Delivery Committee to be confident that all LONE events are planned, managed and delivered appropriately, and give Scouts the best experiences.
To support with drafting and creating the evaluation this template can be used.
To view the Word forms properly you'll need to download and install the free Scouts font, Nunito Sans.
Support from UK Headquarters
The following support is available. Please get in touch to request.
- Advice to the event organiser by relevant members of UKHQ teams
- Promotion via scouts.org.uk/events, social media and other member communications as appropriate
- Where possible, a visit from a member of Team UK to your event. Please complete the request form on the Team UK webpage. Please check with your County/Area/Region (Scotland) Commissioner first, and give plenty of notice.
- You can also create promotional materials including posters, social media posts, invitations and banners, on the Scout brand centre.
We’re also keen to hear from you if you’re planning an event that focuses on making a positive impact on biodiversity or reducing climate change. Further support may be available.