Skip to main content

Camping in Europe

If you're planning a trip to Europe, there is an online database which gives information on European Scout Centres.

(FS260020) (Published November 2020)

Find out more on the European Scout website.

There are specific regulations which apply to taking Scouts to France to camp. You should make sure you are aware of these before planning such a trip.

Camping in France

During the 1990s the French government brought in a number of acts regulating the leadership, organisation and educational content of holidays for young people under 18 years old in their leisure time.

This had major implications for Scout Groups in France because there was no recognition of any Scouting qualifications or training. The Federation du Scoutisme Francais lobbied the  government for the recognition of their training and qualifications resulting in the 1998 act regulating camps and activities organised by recognised French Scouting Associations.

The 1998 Act was replaced in 2003 by new regulations and does not, at present, extend to other member Associations of WOSM (The World Organisation of the Scout Movement). However it would be impossible for UK Scout Association Leaders to comply fully with the other acts regulating holidays for young people. You should therefore comply with the requirements set out below.

In France all camps with more than 12 young people lasting more than 5 nights must be registered with the Ministry of Youth and Sport. The registration form must have been stamped by the persons in charge at Departmental (County), Regional and National level of the Association concerned. You must take a copy of your complete and approved Visits Abroad form with you.

Camp Leaders should be over 21 years old, unless the camp has less than 60 young people attending when a Leader may be 19. The Leader should be assisted by a team of people who are all over 17 years old to a ratio of at least one Leader per 12 participants. A qualified First Aider should be present.

The Leader in Charge of the Camp must have with them a copy of their Scout appointment and their Woodbadge Certificate. They should also have copies of all the appointments and Woodbadge certificates held by other member of the Leadership team. The First Aider should have proof of their First Aid qualifications.

All adults should have completed the relevant disclosure process and have their disclosure forms with them.

Camps are monitored by Inspectors from the Ministry of Youth and Sport and can also be visited by Health and Safety Inspectors. They have the right to enter your camp at any time. If, on inspection, anything is found to be inadequate, any remarks and necessary recommendations will be made on the spot and if need be in writing.

The Camp Director has to keep with them and present to any inspector the following:

  • A list of the participants and the leadership team.
  • Medical forms, detailing vaccinations and possible allergies, for each of the participants under the age of 18 with parental authorisation for medical treatments and required medication and any surgery considered necessary by a doctor.
  • A medical book recording all treatment administered to participants.
  • Copies of all warrants, Woodbadge certificates and relevant First Aid and activity
    qualifications held by the leadership team.
  • A list of menus.
  • A certificate confirming that water is drinkable, if the water on site is not supplied by mains water.

Please make sure that you have all the necessary information to present to Inspectors should they arrive to inspect your camp. You should also present your International Letter of Introduction and a copy of your travel insurance policy.

The standards required for Health and Safety on camps are summarised below and should be followed at all times:

Please remember that many of these requirements are standard practise at any Scout
Camp. France has a lot to offer visitors and by following these simple guidelines you can ensure a smooth running and enjoyable stay.