Safeguarding Bowls

Guidelines for Clubs

January 2016





Document Version Control

Version: 6

First Approved on:

October 2013

Last reviewed on:

January 2016

Date of next review:

January 2017


Review History

Date of Review


October 2013

Version 1 reviewed and approved for use

October 2014

Reviewed and approved for use

May 2015

Added three new sections, renumbered

October 2015

Reviewed and updated

December 2015

Reviewed and updated

January 2016

Reviewed and updated


Revision History


Change Log



Initial release of policy

October 2013


Three new sections added

May 2015


Update/Add ESMBA

September 2015


Update/EBF Added

October 2015


Update/ BCGGA Added

December 2015



January 2016





Key abbreviations found in this document

BDA           Bowls Development Alliance

BE              Bowls England

BCGBA      British Crown Green Bowling Association

CMG          Case Management Group

CPO           Welfare Officer/Child Protection Officer

CPSU         Child Protection in Sport Unit

CSC           Children’s Social Care (formerly known as Social Services)

CSP           County Sports Partnership

DBS           Disclosure & Barring Service (formally known as CRB)

EBF            English Bowls Federation

EIBA           English Indoor Bowling Association Ltd

ESMBA      English Short Mat Bowling Association

LSCB         Local Safeguarding Children’s Board

NGB           National Governing Body

NSPCC      National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children




Appendix       Title                                                                                                    Page

       1               Bowls Club Welfare Officer – Job Description                                     2

       2               Safe Recruitment Guidelines                                                                4

       3               Whistle Blowing Guidelines                                                                    7

       4               Confidentiality Guidelines                                                                      10

       5               Traveling and Staying Away Guidance                                                 11

       6               Transport Guidelines                                                                              29

       7               Anti-bullying Policy                                                                                32

       8               Managing Challenging Behaviour                                                          35

       9               Physical Contact in Bowls                                                                     39

       10             Useful External Support Contact List                                                    41

       11             Local Safeguarding Children’s Boards                                                  44

       12             Useful Internal Bowls Contact List                                                         51

       13             Safeguarding Training Plan                                                                   52

       14             Photographing and Filming Children in Sport                                        53

       15             Complaints Procedure                                                                           55

       16             Safeguarding Induction Process for Clubs                                            57

       17             Roles and Responsibilities                                                                     58

       18             Code of Ethics & Behaviour                                                                  60

Additional Guidance

Social Media


Event Planning Tool


Guideline 1

Bowls Club Welfare Officer – Job Description

1. Core Tasks

     Assist the club in developing or adopting the National Governing Body Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy and Procedures.[1]

     Assist the club to identify areas for development to ensure a safe and welcoming environment for young players and adults at risk.

     Be the first point of contact for staff, members, volunteers, children and parents for any issue concerning the safeguarding of children and adults at risk, poor practice, and potential or alleged abuse.

     Ensure that all incidents and concerns are dealt with in accordance with policy guidelines.

     Ensure that all relevant members, volunteers and staff have the opportunity to access appropriate safeguarding training, with the support of the club/National Governing Body.

     Ensure that appropriate procedures for recruitment of staff and volunteers are in place locally and managed nationally including DBS disclosures.

     Maintain contact details for Child Social Care (CSC) (previously Social Services), Adult Social Care (ASC) the Police and NGB Safeguarding Officer.

     Ensure that Codes of Conduct are in place for staff, volunteers, coaches, and children and that there are guidelines for parents and members and they are communicated to the relevant parties.

     Advise on child protection issues or be in attendance as necessary on Club or County Management Committees.

     Maintain confidentiality.

2. Core Skills

     Basic administration and record maintenance.

     Communication skills.

     Experience in working with children and knowledge about child protection and safeguarding.

     Ability to manage local safeguarding policy and procedures with the support of the club/National Governing Body.

3. Recommended Training

All clubs should ensure that their members including coaches, volunteers and in particular Club Welfare Officers (formally known as Child Protection Officers) attend relevant training courses to ensure that all children and adults at risk are safe within their clubs.


·         Safeguarding & Protecting Children – sports coach UK (3-hour workshop) - Aimed at volunteers, coaches and Club Welfare Officers. The course provides a basic understanding and awareness of safeguarding.

They are provided at a local level and organised by the County Sport Partnership (see CSP websites).


·         Safeguarding in Bowls – “Time to Listen” (4-hour workshop) - This workshop is designed to support Club Welfare Officers in their role. The workshop uses easy to follow, practical, bowls related examples and case studies to enable you to fully understand your role in the club and how you can effectively safeguard young people and adults at risk in your care.

These courses are administrated by the Bowls Development Alliance and can be provided upon request.


For further information on training courses visit the website or call the BDA office on 01664 777001 and register your interest.


Guideline 2

Safe Recruitment Guidelines

Grassroots bowls needs the many thousands of volunteers to ensure the game continues to grow. It is very important that the right people are encouraged to volunteer their services in the many different roles there are to play.

The following guidelines reflect government guidance and legislation and are aimed at ensuring all involved in working with children and adults at risk are suitable to do so.

Advertising a Volunteer Vacancy

Often when a volunteer position becomes vacant, an internal candidate may already have been identified, and an informal approach by the secretary or committee member would normally be made to confirm the interest of the individual.

If there are no such candidates, then an internal notice could be placed on a notice board in the club house or circulated by word of mouth.

However, the system of recruitment should remain the same with both paid staff and volunteers and all roles involving responsibility for young people and adults at risk should have robust recruitment procedures in place to ensure safe and appropriate staff and volunteers working with children and adults at risk in bowls.

The club or organisation should provide the following:

     A job description detailing the overall purpose of the role, its scope and the skills and experience required to carry it out.

     Information about any responsibility for young people or adults at risk within the role – including whether the role is in “regulated activity”, in which case the post will be eligible for a DBS check. For further details, see page 9 flowchart titled Do I require a DSB Check?

     An application form. For assistance see Template 4 - Application form for Coaches/ Staff/Volunteers/Officers

Any advertisement for the role should include:

     the aims of the organisation.

     a description of the role, key responsibilities and minimum experience and skills required.

     copy of codes of conduct for employees, volunteers and children and guidance for parents and carers.

     short statement that reflects the club or organisation’s commitment to safeguarding.

     process for candidates to apply and a closing date for application.

     contractual information: is the post-paid /unpaid? permanent /temporary/part/full time?

     hours of work and location.

     if the post requires a DBS check.


Everyone should complete an application form. This will assist in decision making and does contain all the personal details which are required for administrative purposes.

(See template sample form 4 - Application form for Coaches/ Staff/Volunteers/Officers).

Self-Declaration Form

As part of the application process all individuals should complete a self-declaration form, declaring any convictions or cautions including all unspent convictions. (can’t ask this question if not relevant)

(See template sample form 5 – Self Disclosure)


Two written references should be requested one of which should know of the candidate’s previous experience with children and/or adults at risk. This is particularly important if the person is not known to the club or organisation. If an individual has no experience of working with children or adults at risk, then training would have to be undertaken.


Required qualifications will be checked as part of the interview process.


All new staff and volunteers will receive advice and support when new to their role. Their progress will be monitored with a clear process of induction outlined.

Salaried Staff

Each employing body will be expected to follow its each own recruitment guidelines, which will include safeguarding considerations. If salaried staff are in regulated activity, safe recruitment guidelines would be applied.



Following changes introduced under the 2012 Act only those people in “regulated activity” meet the eligibility criteria for a DBS check.

Refer to the flowchart below to see if you require a DBS check.

Do I require a DBS check?

Barred list check: a list of people barred from working with children.

Should you meet the eligibility criteria please contact your relevant National Governing Body to request a criminal record check application form.

Guidance on completing and returning the application form will be provided to all applicants.

Guideline 3

Whistle Blowing Guidelines


The National Governing Bodies of bowls are all working together with the Bowls Development Alliance, and are committed to creating and maintaining the safest possible environment for children and adults at risk to participate in the sport of bowls and each recognise their responsibility to promote a safe environment and for any concerns to be reported without fear of reprisal.

This policy should be read in conjunction with all of the organisations’ own policies about whistleblowing for all complaints raised within bowls.

What is Whistle Blowing?

Whistle blowing is an early warning system. It is about revealing and raising concerns over misconduct or malpractice within an organisation or within an independent structure associated with it.

The Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 protects those who raise legitimate concerns about specified matters. It makes provision about the kinds of disclosure that may be protected and the circumstances in which disclosures are protected. This policy is therefore intended to comply with the Act by encouraging everyone in bowls to make disclosures about fraud, misconduct or wrongdoing in the sport and anyone within it, without fear of reprisal, so that problems can be identified, dealt with and resolved quickly.


     You should be aware of the importance of eliminating fraud or wrongdoing, and report anything that you become aware of that is illegal.

     You will not be victimised, subject to detriment or dismissed for raising a legitimate matter under this procedure.

     Covering up someone else’s wrongdoing is also a disciplinary offence. Never agree to remain silent about a wrongdoing, even if told to do so by someone in authority.

     You will not be penalised for raising a qualifying disclosure even if it is not upheld, unless the complaint was both untrue and made in bad faith.

     It is not the responsibility of the person reporting the disclosure to investigate – it is the responsibility of the respective National Governing Body (BE, EIBA, ESMBA, BCGBA and EBF) to investigate.

     Confidentiality should be upheld in line with legislation and government guidance. Confidentiality will be maintained during the process to the extent that it is practical and appropriate in the circumstances.

     Maliciously making a false allegation is a disciplinary offence.

Objectives of the Policy

All club and county members, committee members, coaches, volunteers and parents should have an understanding of whistle blowing.

All club and county members, committee members, coaches and volunteers should know where to access the Safeguarding Bowls Policy for whistle blowing and to follow it when anything is reported.

All players and parents should be aware of the policy of the National Governing Body, club or county and of what action should be taken when legitimate concerns arise.

Individuals should be assured that they will be supported when concerns are reported.

Qualifying Disclosures

National Governing Bodies would expect its members or participants to report any of the following:

     A criminal offence (including fraud)

     A failure to comply with a legal obligation

     A miscarriage of justice

     The endangering of an individual’s health and safety

     Damage to the environment

     Deliberate concealment of information relating to any of the above

Where the nature of the disclosure is not included in the above list, it should be made by way of the relevant National Governing Body’s Grievance Procedure and/or Safeguarding and Protecting Children and Adults at Risk Policy and not under the Whistle Blowing procedure.

Your belief must be reasonable, but it need not be correct. It might be discovered subsequently that you were in fact incorrect, but you must be able to show that you held the belief in good faith and that it was a reasonable one to hold in the circumstances at the time.

Disclosure Procedure

1.    If you wish to make a qualifying disclosure you should in the first instance report the situation to an appropriate person.


2.    Such disclosures should be made promptly so that investigation may proceed and any action taken quickly.


3.    All qualifying disclosures will be taken seriously. The disclosure will be promptly investigated and as part of the investigatory process, you will be interviewed and asked to provide a written statement setting out the nature and details of your qualifying disclosure and the basis for it. Confidentiality will be maintained during the process to the extent that it is practical and appropriate in the circumstances.


4.    In order to investigate a disclosure a National Governing Body must be able to determine the scope of the investigation and the individuals who should be informed about the disclosure. The National Governing Bodies reserve the right to appoint another investigator to investigate the disclosure other than the designated person to whom you reported.


5.    Your National Governing Body may ask you to attend a meeting at a reasonable time and place at which your disclosure can be discussed. You should take all reasonable steps to attend that meeting and you have the right to bring with you an appropriate other individual of your choice.


6.    Once the investigation has been conducted and completed, you will be informed in writing of the outcome and the National Governing Body’s decision as soon as possible.


7.    If you wish to appeal against the National Governing Body’s decision, you must do so in writing within five working days of the decision. On receipt of an appeal a senior officer or member of the Case Management Group shall make arrangements to hear your appeal. Your National Governing Body may ask you to attend a meeting at a reasonable time and place at which your appeal can be discussed. You should take all reasonable steps to attend that meeting and you have the right to bring with you an appropriate other individual of your choice.


8.    Following your National Governing Body hearing your appeal, you will be informed in writing of the outcome and their conclusion and decision within five working days.


9.    Once the National Governing Body decision has been finalised, any necessary action will be taken. If no action is taken, the reason will be explained to you.


10.  If, on conclusion of the above stages, you reasonably believe that appropriate action has still not been taken, you may report the matter to the proper authority in good faith. The act sets out a number of prescribed bodies or person/s to which qualifying disclosures can be made. However, National Governing Bodies always encourage members and staff to raise their concerns directly in the first instance, rather than externally. This enables issues to be dealt with promptly and speedily.


The National Governing Bodies all endorse this policy and will ensure that it is followed by all bowls organisations that fall within their remit.  This policy should be implemented within all bowling organisations.

Guideline 4

Confidentiality Guidelines

Confidentiality refers to guidelines within bowls about when information can be shared, with whom and rules around when it is not appropriate to share information.

Every effort should be made to ensure that confidentiality is maintained for all concerned. However, there are circumstances when it is important that information is shared including to report or prevent harm to a child or an adult at risk.

Information should be handled and disseminated on a need to know basis only.

This includes the following people:

     Club Welfare Officer

     Parents/guardian of the person who is alleged to have been abused (if the concerns relate to the parent or guardian, seek advice from the NGB Safeguarding Officer, who will liaise with Children’s Social Care services, about sharing information)

     Person making the allegation

     Children’s Social Care/police

     NGB Safeguarding Officer

Information should be stored in a secure place with access limited to designated people, in line with data protection laws (e.g. that information is accurate, regularly updated, relevant and secure).

Data Storage

When you're storing data, remember to comply with the Data Protection Act. The Act requires that you keep your clients' personal data secure, 'with appropriate technical organisational measures taken to protect the information'. In practice, this means you should encrypt personal data and protect it with a password, as well as taking physical precautions to keep it safe - lock away computers at night and secure servers and external hard drives with anti-theft cables.

     The Act requires that you take steps to keep personal data secure

     Encrypt sensitive data with a password

     Take physical precautious to keep data safe


Guideline 5

Travelling and staying away Guidance

This guide has been created to help coaches, officials and parents to understand the roles and responsibilities involved in taking players away.

It should be used alongside Safeguarding Bowls’ other relevant policies and guidance, particularly those relating to the safeguarding and protection of children.



Home fixtures are likely to resemble coaching sessions and the duty of care will be similar.  However, even the simplest away trip requires some planning. This section gives guidance on away fixtures and day-trips that do not include overnight accommodation.

When planning any events, it is useful to complete a risk assessment to ensure that all key aspects are covered. The following website will provide helpful advice and tools

Communication with parents, guardians and carers

For a simple away fixture, this may amount to: the method of transport; the pick-up point and estimated time of return; the destination and venue; details of the competition; the name of the coach and/or team captain (with contact details); emergency contact details; and a note of any costs (fares or money required for meals). Also, clarify any special requirements for all children, particularly those with disabilities, if appropriate.


The transport policy gives full information about appropriate procedures for transporting children which should be applied for all event planning

Checking the suitability of supervising adult

All people acting in a supervisory capacity with children or adults at risk must, as an absolute minimum, have completed a Safeguarding Bowls self–declaration form. If in regulated activity (see the safe recruitment guidelines), the adult should have DBS Disclosure which has been seen and deemed satisfactory by the NGB Safeguarding Officer Information about this can be obtained directly from your National Governing Body.

Mixed groups

Where the group is of mixed sex there should be at least one male and one female member of staff (including coaches, parents and other nominated volunteers). The number of staff and their differing responsibilities will be determined by the profile of the trip. Consideration should be given to the individual requirements of disabled players and those with special needs.

Roles and responsibilities of the staff

Parents expect their children to be cared for safely and sensibly. All staff (including coaches, parents and other nominated volunteers), are expected to take the role of a responsible parent; to be acting in loco parentis.

All staff should be provided with a full itinerary, including emergency contact information for the children’s parent(s) or guardian(s) and full transport arrangements. It can be difficult supervising groups where the parents of some players are also present. In this situation, it should be made clear beforehand that players are part of a group, that this group is under the supervision of a designated person/s, and that individual parents should not seek to compromise the situation.

There should always be a list of group members, so that a simple head count or register can be taken at any time. Also, ensure there is easy access to home and emergency contact numbers. It is vital for the responsible adult to acknowledge the significance of his or her role and to abstain from drinking alcohol whilst in charge of children.

Staff to player ratio

Any trip must have a suitable ratio of staff to players. The factors to take into consideration are:

     Gender, age and ability of the group

     Players with disabilities, or special educational or medical needs

     The duration and nature of the journey

     The competence and likely behaviour of the players

     The experience of the staff in supervising players

Staffing ratios are difficult to prescribe as they will vary according to all of these factors, as well as the location of the fixture or event, the type of activity being undertaken and the resources available. However, consideration must be given to ensuring that there are enough people to deal with an emergency.

As a guide, a ratio of 1:8 should be considered as a minimum for players aged 11 years and over. For younger children and people with disabilities, this ratio may be increased.  There should always be more than one adult supervising any group.

Supervision while travelling

On each trip, one adult – normally the team manager/coach – will take overall responsibility for the group (at all times). For the purposes of this document, this person is referred to as the “team manager”.

The level of supervision needed while travelling should be considered as part of the risk assessment.

Ideally, drivers will not be responsible for supervising players, but this may be the case with smaller groups.

Where appropriate, all group members should be made aware of the position and operation of their vehicle’s emergency door, and the location of any first aid or fire equipment.

Factors that the team manager should consider when planning supervision on transport include:

     The safety of the group near roads and other dangerous locations.

     Safety on buses, trains, ferries and planes. The team captain should make clear to the group members how much or how little freedom they have to roam (misbehaviour is one of the main causes of accidents to children – appropriate supervision and discipline should be maintained at all times).

     Sufficient stops at suitable places, to ensure the safety and comfort of all group members including the driver.

The team manager/coach should meet with all the travelling players at the beginning of the trip to set down clear ground rules and responsibilities.

Public transport

When public transport is being used, the organiser should, where possible, book well in advance and arrange for seats to be reserved so that the party can travel together.

Breakdowns and accidents

In the event of a breakdown or accident, the group should remain under the direct supervision of the team manager or another designated staff. If the accident is of a serious nature, then the relevant National Governing Body’s Designated Officer should be informed immediately. 

First aid

The team manager should know how to contact the emergency services and have access to the minimum first-aid provision.

Other medication

The team manager should be aware of any medical conditions the players may have, including allergies.  Members of staff and volunteers should not give medication to young people and should be informed by parents about arrangements for medication.

Emergency procedure

If an emergency occurs during a trip, then the following steps should be taken:

     Establish the nature of the emergency as quickly as possible.

     Ensure that the group are safe and supervised.

     If relevant, establish the names of any casualties and get them immediate medical attention.

     Ensure that any group members who need to know are made aware of the incident, and that all group members are following correct emergency procedures.

     If there are casualties ensure that a member of staff accompanies these people to hospital, if relevant, and that the rest of the group are adequately supervised (and kept together) at all times.

     If necessary, notify the police immediately.

     Notify the relevant National Governing Body’s Designated Officer immediately.

     As soon as it is safe and sensible to do so, write down all relevant facts and any witness details, as accurately as you can, to preserve any evidence.

     Keep a written account of all events, times and contacts after the incident.

     Complete a Safeguarding Bowls incident/accident report form as soon as possible.

     Ensure that no-one in the group speaks to the media. All media enquiries should be referred to the relevant National Governing Body immediately.

     Ensure that no-one in the group discusses legal liability with other parties.

     Those in charge of a trip have a duty of care to people under the age of 18. They also have a common-law duty to act as any reasonably prudent parent would.

     Staff should not hesitate to act in an emergency and to take life-saving action in an extreme situation.

Procedure for the Home Contact

If contacted about an emergency, the person acting as the Home Contact should:

     Verify that the team manager has control of the situation and establish if any assistance is required.

     Contact parents and keep them as well informed as possible.

     Liaise with the relevant National Governing Body’s Designated Officer immediately.

Public liability cover

Organisers and team managers should ensure that public liability insurance is in place and that they are aware of any limitations in cover. They should take a copy of the policy with them, or at least know where the policy is kept.

Personal accident cover

Organisers should ensure that adequate personal accident insurance is in place and that they are aware of any limitations in cover.


Insurance while travelling

Passengers travelling in motor vehicles in the UK are covered (under law) by insurance policies required under the Road Traffic Act (1988). Best practice is to check the insurance certificates for any vehicle that is being used to transport players. At the same time, it is prudent to check driving licences. For self-drive vehicles, consideration should be given to the extent of accident cover (noting any accidental damage or glass breakage excess), and the availability of breakdown and recovery services.


When planning a trip, you must allow sufficient time for all these requirements to be completed. The following areas need to be considered:

Purpose of trip

     Are you clear what the trip is for? Is it for training, competition or socialising, or will it be a combination of all three?

     When, where and for how long?

·         Having confirmed the purpose of the trip, consideration should be given to:

o   any examination periods the children may have.

o   The duration of the trip considering the age of the children involved and the distance travelled.

o   Suitable venues: including accommodation.

Who will be going?


The objectives of the trip will largely determine who takes part. The following factors should be considered:

     Is the group predominantly of one age or is there a wide range of ages?

     Is it a mixed-sex group?

     How large is the group?

     Do any members of the group have disabilities, or special educational or medical needs?


The profile of the playing group will, in turn, determine staff issues such as:

     The ratio of adults to children. For reference

     Suitable members of staff and volunteers.

     Requirements for any specialist staff, e.g. coaches.

How much will it cost?

The planning stage should also incorporate some estimate of the cost of the trip.

Factors to consider include:

     How much is travel and accommodation?

     How much will staff be paid? (and who will pay them?)

     What will be included in the overall cost?

With groups consisting of younger players, organisers should try to include all the basic requirements in their assessment of overall cost. This helps to ensure that children do not take insufficient funds for their meals and other expenses.

Spending money

Players usually need to take some spending money for themselves. This can be a problem, as children are vulnerable where money is concerned. Parents should be given some indication how much their child will need; as it is particularly difficult to manage a situation where one child has barely enough and another has large amounts left over. This should from part of your pre-tour discussions with the parents and guardians.

Assessing the risk

No amount of planning can guarantee that a trip will be totally incident free. But good planning and attention to safety measures helps to reduce the likelihood, severity and consequences of any incident.

To ensure that appropriate procedures are in place for any activity, the first step is to identify and assess likely problem areas. Any formal assessment of the potential risks should be made with the explicit intention of reducing these risks.

Ultimately, children must not be placed in situations that expose them to an unacceptable level of risk. Safety must always be the prime consideration. Risk assessments should be based on the following considerations, and you should keep a detailed, written record of every assessment you undertake:

     What are the hazards?

     Who might be affected?

     What safety measures need to be in place to reduce the risks to an acceptable level?

     Can the group leader put these safety measures in place?

     What steps will be taken in an emergency?

These questions should be asked of each and every aspect of the trip, including: the venue; transportation; staffing; sleeping arrangements; food and catering arrangements; and all the activities included in the programme.

A pre-trip visit is recommended good practice. It gives you the opportunity to check many of the above points. When this is not practical, advice from other place to plays or people in your place to play/county who have been to the venue can prove invaluable.

Your risk assessment will also help to determine how many staff are needed to supervise the trip. Where a trip or individual activity is particularly vulnerable to changes in the weather, staff must be suitably experienced to recognise any additional risks and to make a competent assessment of the continued suitability of the trip/activity. The safe recruitment guidelines will assist in ensuring that you have staff/volunteers who are appropriate to assist with the trip.


Staff should meet in advance of the trip, to discuss their roles and ensure that everyone understands and supports the work of the team. Often the team manager has the ultimate say in disciplinary matters, and he/she should be in agreement with all members of staff regarding the application of relevant codes of conduct.

Supporting individuals

Some children may require individual support, from people who understand their specific requirements. Some organisations provide one-to-one support for children during sporting and other leisure activities, because of their disabilities, medical needs and/or behaviour. Things are much more likely to work well for everyone when roles are clearly defined beforehand. The child can be involved in this process, if appropriate.

Drawing up a written agreement with a child can enable the coach/team manager and any support workers to understand each other’s duties and responsibilities: for example, the coach/team manager may be overall charge of the group, while the role of the support worker is to safeguard the welfare of the individual.

Fragmented groups

Careful consideration must be given to the practicalities of supervising the group, especially if it needs to be split up at any time. At competitions, for example, it is not uncommon for some players to be resting or eating while others are still playing. And with some less focused players, bedtime curfews do not necessarily mean sleep; or indeed, remaining in your room. Staff must take account of this and plan to supervise accordingly.

Child protection

Within the staff group there should be a named safeguarding lead who is familiar with child protection policies and procedures, and can respond appropriately should the need arise. Ideally, they will have attended safeguarding workshop.


This is always a possibility, particularly for those who are away from home for the first time. Raise the subject openly, at your group briefing, and identify a member of staff who players can talk to if they grow homesick. Meetings with parents/guardians before the trip can also be used to establish any specific requirements: some children can only sleep with the light on, for example. Any such requirements should be treated with sensitivity and in the strictest of confidence. During the trip, be flexible about phone calls home and encourage parents to discuss any concerns with the Home Contact, if their children do become distressed in any way.

Remote supervision

Occasionally, players are not directly supervised. They may be returning to the hotel, after the day’s events have been completed, or going on a local shopping trip or social visit. Older players may find that unsupervised time is specifically scheduled into their trip. However, as a rule, children under 11 should not be allowed any ’free time’. Parents should always be informed if there will be times when their children go unsupervised.

If remote supervision is to take place, the group leader must ensure that everyone understands the ground rules and is adequately equipped to go unsupervised. Children and young people should never go out alone (groups of three or more are preferred) and a clear, realistic time limit must be imposed on any unsupervised excursion.

Children supervised remotely should know:

     How to contact a member of staff

     Where they are staying (including the telephone number

     And they should have:


     Some form of identification

     Mobile telephone number for the Team Manager

     Maps and any other information that will contribute to their safety and enjoyment

·         A clear understanding of any areas which are ‘out of bounds’

It is often helpful for one or two members of staff to sit in a park or café in the area. This makes it easy for players to ‘report in’ at regular intervals.

Home Contact

For trips involving overnight stays, a list of group members must be left with a contact adult who remains at home. Contact numbers and accommodation details should be included on the list.

Hotels and residential centres

Staff and players should have access to a suitable diet and this means communicating any specific requirements to your chosen hotel or residential centre. You may need to check on the availability of vegetarian or vegan meals, menus that cater for cultural or religious preferences, and gluten or nut free foods. If you are self-catering, make sure you are supplied with all the cooking equipment you need. Mealtimes should be timed to fit in with your programme.

General advice on accommodation

Whatever accommodation you choose, there are some basic rules to good practice:

     It may be helpful to discuss your control and discipline policy with the staff at the centre/hotel.

     If rooms are equipped with satellite television, inappropriate channels may be accessible. Arrange for these channels to be blocked.

     Check centre/hotel rules on room extras, breakages and lost keys.

     All accommodation should be clean, with access to sufficient toilet and bathing facilities. Consideration should be given to individual requirements; for example, Muslim players will require access to running water for washing.

     It is not acceptable for players to share a bed or for male and female players to share a room. It is also unacceptable for a member of staff to share a room with a player, unless they are parent and child.

     The organiser should be sure that players are safe. In hotels, this includes checking that rooms can be locked (and confirming availability of a ‘master’ or pass key, if required).

     For wheelchair users, it is important to check entrance doors, bed access and bathroom facilities, including the position of the washbasins. Any problems may be overcome by providing a career, but this should be discussed with the player and his/her parents before a booking is made.

     Similar suitability checks should be made for players who are hearing impaired, visually impaired or otherwise disabled.

     Centre/hotel staff should be made aware of the rooms occupied by your group, and advised of any members who may have difficulty in responding to a fire alarm.

     Players should be made aware which rooms are occupied by staff and advised how to contact them (using room telephones, if available). This is particularly relevant for trips abroad.


Preparing parents, guardians and carers

It is good practice to meet with parents, guardians and carers before the trip. This gives you the opportunity to address issues such as arrangements for players with disabilities, details of relevant medical conditions, confidentiality issues and consent forms. It may be appropriate to share details of your risk assessment, and to discuss the steps you have taken to reduce risks to an acceptable level.

Paperwork should be prepared for parents and players, giving as much information as possible, including contact details (don’t forget to mention the Home Contact).

For trips that involve an overnight stay, your information pack needs to be more comprehensive. You should try to include:

     The purpose and objectives of the trip

     Name and contact number of the organiser

     Names of all the staff

     Name and contact details of the person within the Bowls Club

     Details of accommodation, with full address and telephone number

     A detailed itinerary, covering scheduled activities (competitions, training, educational sessions and social events) and any unsupervised time

     A kit and equipment list

     An emergency procedures and telephone contact list

     A copy of the code of conduct

     Child protection procedures

     The estimated cost; it may be necessary to point out that the final cost could go up or down, depending on the final size of the group

     The deadline for paying deposits (and securing places) and confirmation whether or not there are any circumstances under which the deposit is returnable. Include a schedule for payment of the remaining amount

     Spending money (try to estimate an appropriate upper/lower band)

     Details of insurance cover

It is difficult for clubs/counties to organise and cost trips without knowing the likely level of the support. Even so, it’s important to give parents sufficient opportunity to organise their finances. Some players may be socially excluded, if deposits are required at short notice or trips are filled on a ‘first come – first served’ basis.

Wherever possible, clubs/counties should give parents the opportunity to reserve a place and then agree a payment schedule that does not disadvantage the player.

Preparing young players

Information about the trip should be given to young people in a format that they will understand. This should include information about the purpose, duration and practical arrangements for the trip.  They can also be reminded of the codes of conduct for the trip and who to contact if they have any concerns.

Information required from parents, guardians and carers.

For all players under 18 years of age a trip and activity consent form should be completed. This form should provide you with:

     Contact details for the parents.

     Medical information – allergies to non-prescription medicines, such as painkillers, should be highlighted. If painkillers are taken routinely, parents should confirm type, frequency and dosage. This will set the limitations for any painkillers you administer during the trip.

     Personal responsibility for asthma inhalers should also be clarified. Contact with contagious or infectious diseases must be noted, and this may need to be checked again just before departure date. Players who indicate that they have a medical condition may be asked by the insurers to complete a more detailed information form.

     Details of special requirements – any dietary requirements or special care needs.

     Consent for emergency medical treatment.

Preparing the players

It’s a good idea to include players in your pre-trip meeting with parents, guardians and carers. But a separate meeting can make it easier to focus on discussing and adopting a code of behaviour. You can also take this opportunity to give advice on the policies and procedures you are using to make the trip safe.

You can talk about what to do if anyone is being bullied, or feels frightened or homesick, and introduce an adult who they can speak to in confidence. And don’t forget to discuss sharing activities, such as the ever-popular cooking and cleaning rotas.

If it’s not possible to meet before the trip, these items should be covered at a briefing meeting upon arrival.

On arrival

These are the guidelines for team managers on arrival at the destination:

     Confirm room numbers with the hotel and match these to your rooming arrangements. Inform the players of the rooming list. This should be organised by the Coach/Team manager in consultation with the other staff. It is not necessarily appropriate to allow the group a free choice when it comes to sharing rooms, although any requests will be considered especially on medical grounds.

     Check all arrangements with the centre/hotel, including meal times, and give them a copy of your itinerary.

     Check on room phones. Look at access to outside lines, call charges and the availability of calls between rooms.

     Establish rules in relation to use of paid facilities, such as the television and mini bar.

     Check that the rooms are all suitable and clean. If there is any damage report it now, as this will save any blame or costs being passed on to group members.

     Check out the sporting venues as soon as you can.

     Initial briefing session.

     On arrival, the team manager/coach should arrange a briefing session with the whole group. This is the time to clarify child protection procedures and emergency procedures, and to reinforce the agreed code of conduct. You can also run through the itinerary and confirm that everyone understands it.

Money and valuables

Decide on the best way to secure your money, both any contingency amount and cash/travellers cheques held by individuals. With younger, inexperienced players, it may be advisable to collect their money and organise a daily bank.

This also helps to give some control in rationing money over the correct number of days (a stock of envelopes, one for each person, is useful for this). Also, make provision for the safekeeping of valuables and belongings during the trip. Hotels usually offer safe boxes, but you might need to appoint an adult to take care of things, especially when the group is out and about.


It is often advisable to appoint one adult to be responsible of all medicines centrally. This helps to ensure correct dosages are given and reduces the possibility of inappropriate drug usage. Make sure everyone knows who to go to for medication, and appoint a second member of staff to provide back up in emergencies (and access medicines when the designated adult is not available). Individuals may need to hold on to some medications, such as asthma inhalers. In this case, take your guidance from the consent form.

Daily briefing

This provides a focal point and a checking–in time for all group members. It allows for a discussion of the day’s events, planning for the next day’s activities and the opportunity to clarify or reinforce rules and procedures. This is also the ideal time for players, should they wish, to speak on a one-to-one basis with members of staff. They can confidentially express any personal worries, giving staff the opportunity to pick up any signs of homesickness or distress, particularly with young players.


De-brief on return

After the trip, staff should meet to discuss its success. This process can be part of your report back to the committee (which may also request a written report). If any significant issues arose on the trip, these should be detailed in writing and may be included in the place to play minutes. Areas for special consideration include the success of your pre-planning, the quality and accuracy of the programme information you provided, and any health and safety, discipline or child protection issues. This will form the basis of any feedback you give to parents.

It may be helpful to hold a de-briefing meeting for parents and players. Alternatively, you may wish to produce a general evaluation form. This gives staff, parents and players an opportunity to comment on the trip and highlight any good/bad aspects of the experience. This kind of feedback is extremely useful for deciding what lessons need to be learnt, and what can be done differently in the future to make trips even more enjoyable.


General advice

Staffing ratios for visits abroad will vary, but generally more staff are required than they would for a UK trip. It is important to take staff or volunteers who can speak the local language, if possible. Staff must meet in advance of the trip to discuss and agree roles and responsibilities. A named safeguarding lead who is familiar with the organisational child protection policies and procedures should be appointed.  Ideally this person should have attended relevant safeguarding training.  It is also important all that all staff are clear as to their duties in this area.

The following factors should all be considered at the first stages of planning:

     Information on the language, particularly common phrases.

     The culture of the country – rules and regulations, body language, dress codes, local customs, attitudes to gender and so on.

     Exposure to drugs and alcohol and consequences in their use.

     Simple maps of the area with key locations.

     Food and drink – the suitability or otherwise of drinking tap water and care in eating uncooked foods.

     Currency and the advisability of travellers’ cheques.

     Telephones abroad and how to use them, including the code for phoning home, advice on phone cards and mobile phones.

     The need for current passports and visas if required.

     Requirements for any non-EU nationals, including vaccinations.

     Safeguarding Bowls child protection policy and procedures.

Reconnaissance trips

It is good practice to visit destinations before any trip is undertaken, but often this not practical. If you cannot visit beforehand, gather as much information as you can from:

     Other place to plays and organisations that have been to the area.

     The clubs in the area to be visited.

     Embassies and consulates.

     Travel agents and operators.

     The internet, books and magazines.

     Pay particular attention to cultural issues, including typical diets, attitudes to sexuality, ethnicity and disability, and any penalties relating to drugs and alcohol. (are we relating to TUE drugs?)

Permission to compete overseas

In order to compete abroad, you may need to obtain a letter of consent from the National Governing Body. If you will be using a group passport, a letter of consent is a prerequisite of the Passport Agency (for most sports).

If a child is subject to a Care Order or is a Ward of Court, advice should be sought from Children’s Social Care and the relevant National Governing Body, before the trip begins.

Pre-Departure Checklist

Ensure you have or have completed the following:

     Paperwork to leave with the Home Contact.

     Itinerary and contact numbers/address of the accommodation.

     List of all group members.

     Contact names and address for all group members.

     Copies of parental consent forms.

Booking transport

Where possible, the team manager should book transport well in advance and arrange for seats to be reserved so that the party can travel together. If the trip is greater than four days, the Coach/Team Manager should telephone the Home Contact to provide regular updates.

Ferries, boats and coaches

The coach/team manager must make clear to group members how much freedom the Players have to ‘roam’; misbehaviour is a major cause of accidents on these types of transport and appropriate supervision and discipline should be maintained at all times. Careful consideration should be given to allowing group members on deck without an adult.

Air travel

Journeys involving aircraft require careful planning and preparation. The airline/travel agent will be able to advice on particular requirements. The coach/team manager must ensure that players understand what constitutes appropriate behaviour on board an aircraft. If the group includes members with disabilities, check with the airline that suitable facilities are in place. The coach/team manager should strongly resist any attempt by the airline to split the group between different aircraft.


Clubs/counties organising their own transport need to be aware that different countries may have different legislation and regulations regarding travel and transport (some require special documentation for mini buses, for example). All group members should be made aware of the dangers of unfamiliar, right-hand drive traffic, and advised that UK minibuses/coaches may not open on the kerb side of the road. You should also be clear that you understand the levels of insurance and liability in respect of the vehicle.

Crossing roads

Extra supervision may be required to address unfamiliarity with right-hand drive traffic.

Emergency medical facilities

The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) can be used to cover any necessary medical treatment due to either an accident or illness within the European Economic Area (EEA)

The EHIC entitles the holder to state provided medical treatment within the country they are visiting and the service provided will be the same as received by a person covered by the country’s “insured” medical scheme

To apply for an EHIC,

·         At the Post Office

·         By telephone: EHIC Application Line on 08456062030

·         Online – http:/ 

On-site procedures

If an emergency occurs during an overseas trip, the following steps must be taken:

     Notify the British Embassy/Consulate.

     Inform the Home Contact. The Home Contact’s number should be easily accessible at all times during the trip. Pass the following details on, so that they may be given to parents:

     Nature, location, date and time of the incident.

     Names of casualties and details of any injuries.

     Action taken (and by who), any emergency service involvement.

     Action to be taken (and by who), any further assistance required.

     Notify insurers, especially if medical assistance is required.

     Notify the provider/tour operator if appropriate.

     Ascertain landline phone numbers for future calls (do not rely on mobile phones).

     Contact the relevant National Governing Body’s Designated Officer.

Emergency procedure for the Home Contact

If contacted about an emergency that has occurred on a trip, the Home Contact should:

     Ensure that the coach/team captain is in control of the emergency and establish if any assistance is required from the place to play.

     Contact parents and keep them as well informed as possible at all stages of the emergency.

     Liaise with the National Governing Body.

     Liaise with a designated media contact (if appropriate).

     Report the incident to insurers using appropriate forms (if necessary).

     Obtain advice from National Governing Body Designated Officer (if necessary).

Hosting with families

One area generates more cause for concern than any other within sport: accommodation supplied by host families. The success of an exchange visit depends largely on good relations and communications between the organisations concerned.

Usually, you need to rely on the judgement of the host club/country; its officials will know the families who are to host your players and should always check that suitable provision has been made. This becomes more difficult when the group is large and hosting arrangements are spread across a number of different places to play. The key is to maintain good, open and honest contact with your hosts and to discuss any concerns as soon as they arise.

Regular exchange visits between the same groups promote familiarity, but organisers should not become complacent. If the host club/country does not have appropriate measures in place for carrying out checks to ensure the health, safety and welfare of players staying in homes, the Team Manager must reconsider whether or not the trip should go ahead.

Parents must be made aware that children living with host families will not always be under direct staff supervision.

Recruiting a host

When recruiting hosts, hand out information sheets with an outline of the requirements any host must be able to fulfil. It is good practice for the organising club/county to put together a small group of two or three people, to visit each family and check that arrangements are suitable.


Requirements include:

     All adult members of a host family must comply with child protection procedures from their National Governing body (in respect of personal checks).

     Players should be placed with families where there is a player of similar age and, where possible, the same sex. If the players are of different sexes, both sexes must be present in the household.

     Host families should be informed of the special medical, dietary or cultural needs of their guest players (if any).

     If the group includes people with disabilities, host families must be made aware of any special requirements, such as size of room and access to bathroom facilities. You should always check that these requirements can be met.

     Hosts must be aware of the arrangements for collecting and transporting guest players throughout the trip.

     Guest players should have easy access to the staff on the trip, usually by telephone.

Your own staff should be provided with a list of the visiting group’s members, detailing the names, addresses and telephone numbers of the families they are staying with. This information should also be made available to officials of the visiting club/county (those in the UK and in the home country).


Objective and scope

The purpose of this document is to establish a set of guidelines, policies and procedures for individuals and teams. It covers both the organisation of the team, and the responsibilities and behaviour of staff and players. It is specifically aimed at away trips where travel and accommodation are required, although it should be followed at any events where the place to play is represented.

Behaviour and personal conduct: Must at all times be of a high standard and reflect favourably on the sport and the place to play. Language in public and relevant group situations must always be appropriate and socially acceptable.

Consumption of alcohol: Is totally forbidden for under-age players as defined by UK law (or the law of the host country). Alcohol must not be consumed by a Team/Squad or staff member while en route, prior to, or following a competition event, training camp or other activity, without specific consent from the Team Manager, and never when they are responsible for children. During competition, alcohol is strictly forbidden to all team/squad members and staff.

Smoking: Is prohibited by Team/Squad members and staff whilst en route, prior to, during, or following a competition event, training session or team activity.

Personal appearance: Shall be appropriate to the circumstances as indicated by the Team Manager. Team kit and equipment shall be worn as directed by the Team Manager when competing and training, when assembling or travelling, at official team functions and on other occasions as notified.

Attendance: Is expected at all activities unless agreed by the Team Manager. For the duration of the trip players should keep staff informed of their whereabouts. Punctuality on all occasions is essential and any curfew must be observed.

Illegal performance drugs and substances: Are strictly forbidden. Players are expected to be aware of the current list of banned substances and particular care must be exercised if anyone is on medication prior to, or during an event.

Other illegal drugs and substances: Are strictly prohibited, even though they may not appear on the official banned list in respect of performance enhancing drugs.

Accommodation: At hotels or equivalent must be as directed by Team Manager. Players should accept their appointed rooms and observe occupancy rules: extra, unauthorised people must not be allowed to stay in rooms (particularly overnight) under any circumstances.

Medication: Current medication should be reported to the Team Manager, who will then report it to the relevant personnel. Allergies to any medication must also be reported to the Team Manager (this is often overlooked but is an essential part of proper medical care).

Sanctions: Breaches of the code of conduct shall be dealt with in the first instance by the Team Manager. He /She shall report the incident to the secretary of the place to play, who will then take further action as is deemed necessary.


Please remember, it is not your responsibility to decide whether or not a child is being abused, but you must act on your concerns and pass them on.

Make a detailed note of what you’ve seen or heard but don’t delay passing on the information to your Club, County or NGB Safeguarding Officer.

     Your information should include:

     The nature of the suspicion or allegation

     A description of any visible injury

     The player’s account of what has happened

     Dates, times and any other factual information

Further guidance is available via safeguarding bowls –


Guideline 6

Transport Guidelines

When it comes to transport, the main points to consider are:

     Passenger safety.

     The competence and training of the driver to drive the proposed vehicle (assessed by an allocated person within the club/national governing body) and whether he/she holds insurance and an appropriate, valid licence.

     Total journey time, hours on the road, overall distance and suitable stopping points.

     The length of the driver’s day – will more than one driver be required?

     Type of journey, traffic and weather conditions, appropriate insurance and breakdown cover.

     Supervision requirements.

     Suitability of transport, if players with disabilities are travelling.

     Emergency procedures.


It is the responsibility of the organising official to ensure that the travel arrangements and transport used are suitable for the journey. Vehicles transporting players should be appropriate, roadworthy and insured. Drivers must be appropriately licensed, and are responsible for the maintenance and care of their vehicle during the trip.

Minibuses and coaches

Minibuses and coaches carrying groups of three or more children (aged 3 to 15 years) must be fitted with seat belts for each child. Where seat belts are provided, they must be worn. Vehicles used to transport wheelchairs should have anchor points. The driver must be suitably qualified and experienced in driving a minibus or coach.

Private cars

It is the responsibility of the driver to ensure that the travel arrangements and type of transport are suitable for the journey. Vehicles transporting players should be appropriate and roadworthy and they should also have the appropriate licence and insurance cover.

The insurance cover when transporting people as part of work, whether paid or not should be business cover (insurance companies charge very little for this extra cover). It is the driver’s responsibility for making sure the players have seat belts and use them. Vehicles without seat belts should not be used.

It is important that adults driving players around are not put in a position where they are alone with the player. If this is absolutely necessary, and approved by the club/national governing body then parental permission should be obtained.

When groups of players are travelling together in a private car then a central collection and dropping point should be arranged.

Particularly reminder for coaches: you are not a ‘taxi driver’ you are a bowls coach. It is the parents’ responsibility to get their child to a certain location or event.

The private car user form should be completed for all private drivers.

Child Seats/Restraints

The law says that all children under the age of 12 must use some form of child car seat, unless they are taller than 135cm (4ft 5in). Regardless of whether the child is in the front or rear seats in cars, vans and other goods vehicles, the child must travel in the correct child restraint for their weight with very few exceptions.

The correct child restraint may be a rearward facing baby seat, forward facing child seat, booster seat or booster cushions. The law states that it is the driver's responsibility to ensure that children under the age of 14 years are restrained correctly in accordance with the law.

The law does not require child restraints to be provided in taxis, private hire vehicles, minicabs, minibuses, buses or coaches, although they must be used if available. Seat belts must be worn, if fitted.

Exceptions to the rules

In limited circumstances, children can travel without the correct child restraint. These include:

·         In a licensed taxi or licensed private hire vehicle – If the correct child restraint is not available then, in the rear seat only, children under three may travel unrestrained. Children aged three years and over must use an adult seat belt.


·         In cases of unexpected necessity over a short distance – If the correct child restraint is not available then, a child of three years or more must use an adult belt and be seated in the rear seat only. This exemption does not apply to children under three years and does not cover regular school runs or other journeys that are planned in advance.


·         Where two occupied child restraints in the rear seat preventing, you fitting a third - In this case, provided the front seat is occupied, a third child aged three years and over can use an adult seat belt (lap OR lap and diagonal) in the rear. If the front seat is free, then they must sit there using the correct child restraint.


·         In older vehicles with no rear seat belts – In this case, children three years and over may travel unrestrained.


Travelling in a Coach or Minibus

All coaches and minibuses manufactured after October 2001 must now be fitted with either three-point seat belts or lap belts on forward or rearward facing seats. If you plan to travel by coach or minibus, you should contact the Operator in advance and ask if the vehicle is fitted with seat belts and if they offer the appropriate child car seat restraint. It may not always be possible for the Operator to carry a range of car seats on their vehicle.

If the Operator is unable to provide the appropriate car seat restraints, you should inform the parent/guardians/carer of this. If the Operator is able to provide the appropriate child car seat restraints you should use these, and inform the parent/guardian/carer of this.

For further information regarding the above please visit: or



Guideline 7

Anti-bullying Policy

Within bowls there is a commitment to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all bowlers so they can take part in a relaxed and secure atmosphere regardless of their age or background.  

Quite simply, bullying of any kind is unacceptable in bowls.

If bullying does occur, all members should be able to tell and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively.

This means that anyone who knows that bullying is happening is expected to tell the Club Welfare Officer as soon as they have concerns.

What is Bullying?

Bullying is the use of aggression with the intention of hurting another person.  Bullying results in pain and distress to the victim. Bullying can be:

·         Emotional - being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting (e.g. threatening gestures)

·         Physical - pushing, kicking, hitting, punching or any use of violence

·         Racist - racial taunts, graffiti, gestures

·         Sexual - unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments

·         Homophobic - because of, or focussing on the issue of sexuality

·         Sexist – belittling someone because of their gender

·         Verbal name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing

·         Cyber - 

o   Any issues relating to the internet, such as email, social media & internet chat room misuse.

o   Mobile threats by text messaging & calls

o   Misuse of associated technology, i.e. camera &video facilities

Why is it Important to Respond to Bullying?

Bullying hurts. No one deserves to be a victim of bullying. Everybody has the right to be treated with respect. The sport has a responsibility to respond promptly and effectively to issues of bullying.

Objectives of this Policy

·         All members, coaches, volunteers and parents should understand what bullying is

·         All members, coaches and volunteers should know what the policy is on bullying, and follow it when bullying is reported

·         All players and parents should know what the policy is on bullying, and what they should do if bullying arises

·         As a sport, we take bullying seriously.  Anyone involved in bowls should be assured that they will be supported when bullying is reported

Very simply - Bullying will not be tolerated.


1.    Report bullying incidents to the Club Welfare Officer, member of the club committee or an adult you can trust or the County Welfare Officer.

2.    In cases of serious bullying, the incidents will be referred to the relevant NGB Safeguarding Officer.

3.    In serious cases parents, should be informed and asked to come in to a meeting to discuss the problem.

4.    If necessary and appropriate, police will be consulted.

5.    The bullying behaviour, or threats of bullying, must be investigated and the bullying stopped quickly.

6.    An attempt will be made to help the bully/bullies change their behaviour.

7.    If mediation fails and the bullying continues further disciplinary action will be taken.

Recommended Club Action

If the club decides it is appropriate for them to deal with the situation they should follow the procedure outlined below:

1.    Reconciliation by getting the parties together.  It may be that a genuine apology solves the problem

2.    If this fails or is not appropriate, a small panel of club officers should meet with the parent and child making the allegation to obtain more information. This panel will normally include the Welfare Officer. Minutes should be taken for clarity, which should be agreed by all as a true account

3.    The same panel should meet with the alleged bully and parent/s, detail the allegation and allow them an opportunity of reply.  Minutes should again be taken and agreed

4.    If it is considered that bullying has taken place, the individual should be warned and put on notice of further action if the bullying continues, i.e. temporary or permanent suspension. Consideration should be given as to whether a reconciliation meeting between parties is appropriate at this time. The club committee should monitor the situation for a given period to ensure the bullying is not repeated

5.    All appropriate coaches, volunteers or team managers involved with both individuals should be made aware of the concerns and outcome of the process i.e. the warning


1.    The bully/bullies may be asked to apologise

2.    In serious cases, suspension or exclusion will be considered

3.    If possible, the people concerned will be reconciled

4.    Monitoring should be put in place to ensure repeated bullying does not take place.


1.    The club will have a written constitution, which includes what is acceptable and proper behaviour for all members of which the anti-bullying policy is one part

2.    All club members and parents of young bowlers should sign a code of conduct on an annual basis. The code of conduct should include reference to bullying

3.    The Club Welfare Officer will raise awareness about bullying and why it matters

Further Information

See Guideline 10 Useful External Support contact List



Guideline 8

Managing Challenging Behaviour

Staff, volunteers and coaches may have to deal with challenging behaviour from children and adults at risk from time to time. This is a shared responsibility between everyone - the organisers, the parents, the children and the adults at risk themselves.

This guidance aims to inform all these parties about the roles they play in dealing with difficult behaviour. At the centre is the need to remember that the safety of children and vulnerable adults is paramount– so that everyone in bowls can enjoy the activities in which they are involved.

Clubs and organisations should identify measures they can put in place to promote good practice among staff, organisers and parents, and good behaviour in young bowlers. Young bowlers should understand that if their behaviour goes beyond what is acceptable, or threatens others’ safety, event organisers or staff will take action to intervene in accordance with these measures, for the safe of everyone’s wellbeing.

This guidance note identifies good practice, outlines strategies and sanctions that can be used (as well as those that must never be used) and encourages a proactive approach to help children manage their own behaviour).

Guidance for dealing with difficult behaviour is based on the following principles:

     The welfare of the child or adult at risk is paramount.

     All those involved with young bowlers (including other children and parents) should be provided with clear guidelines about expected standards of conduct, and the process for responding to unacceptable behaviour.

     Children and adults at risk must never be subjected to any treatment that could be considered to be harmful, abusive, humiliating or degrading.

     Some young people will exhibit challenging behaviour as a result of medical conditions, and may require specific or additional guidance. These, and any other unique needs, should be discussed with parents/carers and the child when planning an activity, and extra support provided if needed. 

     Bowls can make a big difference in improving the lives of children and adults at risk, so everyone should be supported to participate, wherever possible. Only in exceptional circumstances, when the safety of the child or adult can’t be maintained, should anyone be excluded from activities.


Good practice requires activities to be planned around the group as a whole, but also to take individual needs into consideration. There should be procedures to enable organisers to establish whether members of the group have, or are likely to have, difficulty with the tasks, the other participants or the environment.

Where there are potential risks, strategies to manage these risks should be agreed in advance. The appropriate number of adults needed to safely manage a session should be established, taking into account the potential need to respond to challenging behaviour to safeguard other members of the group.

When a child or adult’s behaviour has been identified as requiring extra support or specialist expertise, this should be discussed with parents/carers and where appropriate, the child or adult at risk. The club should seek to work in partnership with parents, and where necessary external agencies, to ensure that everyone can participate safely.

Agreeing acceptable and unacceptable behaviours

Everyone – staff, coaches, volunteers, children, parents and adults at risk should be involved in developing a Code of Conduct that agrees acceptable and unacceptable behaviour, and the sanctions that may be applied in response to a breach of the code. This can be agreed at the start of the season, in advance of a trip away or as part of a welcome session. Evidence suggests that when children and vulnerable adults are involved in the preparation of a Code of Conduct, they arrive at a very sensible and working set of rules and there is more ‘buy-in’ from the participants.

Managing Challenging Behaviour

Responses should always be proportionate to the actions, imposed as soon as is practicable and fully explained to the child and adult at risk and their parents/carers. In dealing with those who display disruptive or challenging behaviour, organisers might consider the following options:

     Time out – from the activity, group or individual work.

     Reparation – making amends.

     Restitution – giving something back.

     Behavioural reinforcement – rewards for good behaviour, consequences for negative behaviour.

     De-escalation of the situation – talking things through.

     Increased supervision by staff/volunteers.

     Increased involvement of parents.

     Use of individual ‘contracts’ or agreements for future or continued participation.

     Sanctions or consequences, e.g. missing an outing.

     Seeking additional support by working with other agencies, e.g. referral for support to Children’s Social Care, discussion with the child’s key worker or adults at risk carer if they have one, speaking to the school or care home about management strategies, etc. Note: these require parental consent unless the child is felt to be ‘at risk’ or ‘in need of protection’.

     Exclusion, temporary or permanent.

The following should NEVER be permitted as a means of managing a child’s or vulnerable adult’s behaviour:

     Physical punishment or the threat of such.

     Refusal to speak to or interact with the child or vulnerable adult.

     Being deprived of food, water, access to changing rooms or toilets, or other essential facilities.

     Verbal intimidation, ridicule or humiliation.

The needs of any child or adult at risk for whom sanctions are frequently necessary should be reviewed. This review should involve the child, their parents, the adult at risk and their carer and in some cases others who provide support or services. If a child or vulnerable person continues to be disruptive, or presents a danger to themselves or others, they may have to be suspended or barred from the group or club activities.

Physical Intervention

The use of physical intervention should always be avoided unless it is absolutely necessary to prevent a child or adult at risk injuring themselves or others, or causing serious damage to property.

Physical contact to prevent something happening should always be the result of conscious decision-making, not a reflexive reaction. Before intervening, the member of staff should ask themselves, ‘Is this the only option to manage the situation and ensure everyone’s safety?’ If you do have to physically intervene, do so in the least restrictive way possible to prevent the individual from being hurt, and do so only after all other strategies have been exhausted. Studies show that, where this is the case, children and vulnerable adults understand and accept the reasons for the intervention.

Where possible adult witnesses should be present

In the event that physical intervention is needed, the following must always be considered:

     Contact should be in line with good practice and never be made in a way that could be interpreted as sexual.

     Any form of physical intervention should achieve an outcome that is in the best interests of the child or the adult at risk showing the behaviour.

     Organisers should consider the circumstances, and the risks associated with employing physical intervention compared with the risks of not doing so.

     The scale and nature of physical intervention must always be proportionate to the behaviour of the young person or adult at risk and the harm or damage they might cause.

     All forms of physical intervention should employ only a reasonable amount of force – the minimum force needed to avert injury to a person or serious damage to property – applied for the shortest period of time.

     Organisers should never employ physical interventions that present an unreasonable risk to children, adults at risk or staff/volunteers.

     Physical intervention should NEVER be used as a form of punishment.

     Physical intervention should NOT inflict pain.

     Where children or adults at risk are identified as having additional needs or behaviours that are likely to require physical intervention, this should be discussed with parents or carers.

Any physical intervention that does happen should be reported and recorded as soon as possible using the Incident Report Form and passed to the Club Welfare Officer.

Views of the Child or Adult at Risk

Coaches, staff and volunteers should meet with the child and adult at risk and his or her parents/carers following any incident of physical intervention. This way everyone involved has an opportunity to talk calmly about what happened. The individuals’ ongoing needs and their continued safe participation in the activity should also be discussed. The parents, child, adult at risk and carer should be made aware of the club’s policies for managing challenging behaviour.

Experiencing or witnessing physical intervention can provoke strong feelings in young people and adults at risk. Even an individual who wasn’t directly involved might be fearful that something similar will happen to them in future. It can be beneficial to explain the outcome of this discussion to other children or adults at risk, or anyone else involved in the incident.

A Policy for Managing Challenging Behaviour

It is in everyone’s best interest for the bowls club or organisation to have a policy around managing behaviour. The guidelines should clearly set out:

     the standard of conduct expected from coaches, staff, volunteers and participants;

     how the organisation will respond to unacceptable behaviour;

     how the organisation will respond to ‘high risk’ behaviour;

     the circumstances in which children or adults at risk will be restrained;

     guidance, information or any support or training available to coaches, staff and volunteers;

     circumstances in which external agencies will be contacted, for support or in response to concerns;

     a process to agree what will happen after an incident. Clubs must have arrangements in place to check on the wellbeing of those involved, guidance on recording information and who should be informed, and a system for recording and monitoring incidents.

Guideline 9

Physical Contact in Bowls

Everyone involved in bowls should have the best experience possible, but at the same time, everyone should be safe. Coaches should keep in mind the following common sense tips in relation to physical contact.

We recognise that physical contact between a child or adult at risk and another adult may be required to instruct, encourage, protect or comfort.

England is a multi-cultural society comprising people from many different ethnic and religious backgrounds. We may also have participants who may be on the Child Protection Register or have previously been, or are currently being abused at home. Not everyone is used to, or is comfortable with any type of touching be it friendly or otherwise. In many cultures, people may be uncomfortable about being touched by strangers of people of the opposite gender. Coaches need to be aware that touching may cause discomfort or embarrassment and need to show consideration.

In bowls, there may be times where a coach may need to touch the player to assist in a certain task to help with their technique or to celebrate. If anyone is uncomfortable with physical contact, it should be made clear that they can make their feelings known privately to the adult. Any contact should be led by the child and not the adult

All touching should be done for a positive reason. As a responsible adult, you should only use physical contact if its aim is to:

·         Develop sports skills or techniques

·         Treat an injury

·         Prevent and injury or accident from occurring

·         Meet the requirements of the sport

Coaches should seek to explain the reason for the physical contact to the child or adult at risk i.e. to reinforce a point or to coach a specific skill. Unless the situation is an emergency, the adult should ask the child or adult at risk for permission. Physical contact should always be intended to meet the individuals need NOT the adults. The following guidelines should be adhered to:

·         If a child or adult at risk becomes injured during a coaching session and the injury requires the individual to be carried to a place of treatment, always seek support from another adult before moving the individual. Any first aid administered should be in the presence of another adult or in open view of others

·         If the child or adult at risk seems uncomfortable in any way with the physical contact, stop immediately

·         If the child or adult at risk you are working with is visually impaired, you should tell them who you are and ask their permission before you come into physical contact with them

·         Where physical contact is for motivational or celebratory reason, agree with the children teachers or adults’ carers or other appropriate adults that to prise good performance with a “high five” or similar action will be used

·         Never help a child or adult to dress, for example, to put on clothing unless they request this and genuinely require assistance



Guideline 10

Useful External Support Contact List

Child Protection in Sport Unit (CPSU) - is to give advice and support to all volunteers in sport clubs. The CPSU was founded in 2001 to work with UK Sports Councils, National Governing Bodies of Sport (NGB’s) County Sport Partnerships (CSP’s) and other organisations to help minimise the risk of child abuse during sporting activities.

CPSU is based at the NSPCC National Training Centre, 3 Gilmour Close, Beaumont Leys, Leicester, LE4 1EZ

Telephone: 0116 234 7278   Email:   Website:

All clubs should ensure they have local contact details for reference. These should include local police station contact details, details of the local Community Support Officer and a number for the local Social Services.


Ann Craft Trust

The Ann Craft Trust works with staff in the statutory, independent and voluntary sectors to protect people with learning disabilities who may be at risk from abuse. They also provide advice and information to parents and carers who may have concerns about someone that they are supporting.  • Tel: 0115 951 5400


ASSIST is a registered charity dedicated to offering confidential, emotional and practical support to individuals and families affected by trauma. http:/

Tel: 01788 560 800 (Helpline)

Breaking Free

An organisation that provides, support to female adults who have experienced childhood sexual abuse.   01793 514339 (Helpline)


A free 24-hour helpline for children  • Tel: 0800 1111


Citizens Advice Bureau

The Citizens Advice service helps people resolve their legal, money and other problems by providing free information and advice from over 3,000 locations across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. See the website for details of local offices.    •   Tel: 03444 111 444


The Government has provided information to show pupils, their families and teachers how to tackle bullying.

Family Rights Group

Provides advice and support to families whose children are involved with social services and develops and promotes services that help secure the best possible future for children and families.   • Tel: 0808 801 0366 (Helpline)


Kidscape provides individuals and organisations with practical skills and resources necessary to keep children safe from harm. Kidscape was established to prevent bullying and child sexual abuse.   • Tel: 020 7823 5430 (Helpline for use by adults concerned about a child being bullied Mon-Tues, 10am-5pm)

Lantern Project

This charity provides information and support services for adult victims of child sexual abuse in Merseyside and the surrounding region  • Tel: 0151 606 4810

NAPAC (National Association for People Abused in Childhood)

NAPAC is a registered charity, which provides support and information for people abused in childhood.  • Tel: 0800 801 0331

NSPCC Helpline

The NSPCC Child Protection Helpline is a free, national, 24-hour service, which provides counselling, information and advice to anyone, including children, concerned about a child at risk.  • Tel: 0808 800 5000

Rape Crisis England and Wales

The website provides information for survivors of sexual violence and their friends and family to access the services they need and details of local rape crisis centres.


Provides confidential & emotional support 24 hours a day for people who are experiencing feelings of distress or despair including those that may lead to suicide.  • Tel: 116 123

Stop It Now

Stop it Now! UK & Ireland is developing a public health approach to the prevention of child sexual abuse through a network of local projects and national initiatives. It provides adults with the information they need to recognise worrying behaviour in themselves or others, and with the confidence to take responsible action when they suspect that something is wrong.   • Tel: 0808 1000 900


This agency provides information, support and counselling for men who have been raped or sexually abused.  • Tel: 0845 122 1201

Local Safeguarding Children Boards

Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs) were established by the Children Act 2004 which gives a statutory responsibility to each locality to have this mechanism in place. 

LSCBs are responsible for local arrangements for protecting children and young people. They provide inter-agency guidelines for child protection.  - See Guideline 8.

Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO)

Within the Local Safeguarding Children Board there will be a Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO)?

The role of the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) works within Children’s Services and should be alerted to all cases in which it is alleged that a person who works with children has:

•           behaved in a way that has harmed, or may have harmed, a child.

•           possibly committed a criminal offence against children, or related to a child.

•           behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates s/he is unsuitable to work with children.

Guideline 11

Local Safeguarding Children’s Boards

The Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) role applies to paid, unpaid, volunteer, casual, agency and self-employed workers. They capture concerns, allegations or offences emanating from outside of work. The Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) is involved from the initial phase of the allegation through to the conclusion of the case.

They will provide advice, guidance and help to determine whether the allegation sits within the scope of the procedures.

The LADO helps co-ordinate information-sharing with the right people and will also monitor and track any investigation, with the aim to resolve it as quickly as possible.


To contact your Local Safeguarding Children Board please see the table below: -

Web Link Title


Barking and Dagenham LSCB



Barnet LSCB



Barnsley LSCB



Bath and North East Somerset LSCB


Bedfordshire LSCB



Bexley LSCB


Birmingham LSCP


Blackburn with Darwen LSCB



Blackpool LSCB



Bolton LSCB



Bournemouth and Poole LSCB



Bracknell Forest LSCB



Bradford LSCB

e-mail -



Brent LSCB



Bridgend LSCB


Brighton and Hove LSCB


Bristol LSCB


Bromley LSCB



Buckinghamshire LSCB





Calderdale LSCB


Cambridgeshire LSCB



Camden LSCB



Cheshire East LSCB


Cheshire West and Chester LSCB


City and Hackney LSCB


Conwy LSCB


Cornwall & Isles of Scilly LSCB


Coventry LSCB


Croydon LSCB


Cumbria LSCB


Derby LSCB


Derbyshire LSCB


Devon LSCB


Doncaster LSCB



Dorset LSCB



Dudley LSCB



Durham LSCB


Ealing LSCB


East Riding of Yorkshire LSCB


East Sussex LSCB


Enfield LSCB


Essex LSCB



Flintshire and Wrexham LSCB


Gateshead LSCB


Gloucestershire LSCB



Greenwich LSCB



Halton LSCB


Hammersmith & Fulham LSCB



Hampshire LSCB



Haringey LSCB



Harrow LSCB



Hartlepool LSCB



Havering LSCB


Herefordshire LSCB



Hertfordshire LSCB



Hillingdon LSCB


Hounslow LSCB


Isle of Wight LSCB


Islington LSCB


Kensington and Chelsea LSCB






Kingston upon Hull LSCB



Kingston upon Thames LSCB



Kirklees LSCB


Knowsley LSCB


Lambeth LSBC


Leeds LSCB



Leicester LSCB



Leicestershire & Rutland LSCB



Lewisham LSCB



Lincolnshire LSCB


Liverpool LSCB


Luton LSCB



Manchester LSCB


Medway LSCB



Merton LSCB


Newcastle LSCB


Newham LSCB



Norfolk LSCB


North East Lincolnshire LSCB



North Lincolnshire LSCB


North Somerset LSCB



North Tyneside LSCB

email us at:


North Yorkshire LSCB



Northamptonshire LSCB



Northumberland LSCB



Nottingham LSCB




Nottinghamshire LSCB



Oldham LSCB



Oxfordshire LSCB


Pembrokeshire LSCB


Peterborough LSCB


Plymouth LSCB



Portsmouth LSCB


Reading LSCB


Redbridge LSCB


Redcar and Cleveland LSCB



Richmond LSCB


Rochdale LSCB


Rotherham LSCB



Salford LSCB



Sandwell LSCB


Sefton LSCB


Sheffield LSCB



Shropshire LSCB



Slough LSCB


Solihull LSCB



Somerset LSCB


South Gloucestershire LSCB



South Tyneside LSCB


Southampton LSCB


Southend LSCB



Southern Area ACPC


Southwark LSCB


St Helens LSCB


Staffordshire LSCB



Stockton-On-Tees LSCB



Stockport LSCB



Stoke-on-Trent LSCB


Suffolk LSCB

Children Web:

Adults web:

Sunderland LSCB


Sutton LSCB


Swindon LSCB



Tameside LSCB


Telford & Wrekin LSCB


Thurrock LSCB


Torbay LSCB


Tower Hamlets LSCB


Trafford LSCB


Walsall LSCB


Waltham Forest LSCB


Wandsworth LSCB



Warrington LSCB


Warwickshire LSCB


West Berkshire LSCB


West Sussex LSCB


Westminster LSCB


Wigan LSCB



Wiltshire LSCB


Windsor and Maidenhead LSCB


Wirral LSCB


Wokingham LSCB


Wolverhampton LSCB


Worcestershire LSCB



York City LSCB





Guideline 12

Useful Internal Bowls Contact List

Bowls Development Alliance

Development Director

Susan Cooper

Tel: 07884 358202


Bowls England

NGB Safeguarding Officer

Alistair Hollis

Tel: 07765 050408


English Indoor Bowling Association Ltd

NGB Safeguarding Officer

Joanne Shore

Tel: 01664 481900


English Short Mat Bowling Association

NGB Safeguarding Officer

Barry Hedges

Tel: 07788414311


English Bowling Federation

NGB Safeguarding Officer

Mick Warriner



British Crown Green Bowling Association

NGB Safeguarding Officer

Paul Ashmore



Safeguarding Bowls Policy Group

This group reviews, manages and develops the safeguarding policies within bowls and on behalf of all the bowls National Governing Bodies


Safeguarding Case Management Group

Each organisation has its own process and procedures for management of cases


Safeguarding Bowls Appeals Group

Each organisation has its own process and procedures for dealing with appeals


Guideline 13

Safeguarding Training Plan




What and when?



Safeguarding & Protecting Children




Sports coach UK module delivered through County Sport Partnerships





Welfare Officers


Why attend?

Raise awareness and develop knowledge on safeguarding.

Who delivers them?

County Sport Partnerships deliver “Safeguarding & Protecting Children” workshops for all sports throughout the year. Book a place directly with the CSP

sports coach UK deliver their own course across the country





£30 -£40


Safeguarding                       in Bowls -

Time to Listen





NSPCC course delivered by the BDA





Bowls Club/County Welfare Officers


Why attend?

To learn more about the roles and responsibilities of a Bowls Club/County Welfare Officer and know what to do if an issue arises and who can support you with dealing with it

This course is administered by the Bowls Development Alliance to book a place go online at or call 01664 777001 to register your interest








Guideline 14

Photographing and Filming Children & Adults at Risk in Sport

Photographing and Filming

Photos of young people and adults at risk enjoying the sport can be great promotional tools but when personal information is added to photographs, these images can be used to identify children or adults at risk, and put their safety and privacy at risk. Photographs can also be adapted for inappropriate use.

First principles for photography and video

The welfare of children and adults at risk who are taking part in bowls is paramount.

Parents, children, adults and carers have a right to decide whether images will be taken and how they will be used.

Parents/carers must give written consent for images to be taken and used. See our Photography Permission Form (Template 10).

In terms of content, images should only convey best practice and positive aspects of bowls.

Care should be taken to ensure that images are not sexual or exploitative in nature, or open to misinterpretation and misuse.

Efforts should be made to ensure that images are only taken by authorised persons, as agreed in the protocol for a particular event.

Publishing images

Photographers should obtain written permission from parents/carers to take and use any photographs.

If the club wants to recognise the achievement of an individual bowler by publishing their name with their photograph, personal details should NEVER accompany the image (e.g. postal or email address, telephone numbers).

Try to take and use photographs that focus on the activity, rather than a particular child or vulnerable person. Where possible, use images that represent the diverse range of individuals who take part in bowls.

Ensure images reflect positive aspects of children and adults at risk involvement in bowls, like fun, competition and special achievements.

Report any inappropriate image use to the authorities. If you have a concern, report it to the NGB Designated Safeguarding Officer.


Filming and photography at competitions

If you are inviting a member of the press or a professional photographer to a session, make sure they understand their responsibilities when it comes to child protection issues.

Provide a clear brief about what is appropriate in terms of image content and their behaviour around the players.

Inform all attendees that a photographer will be present.

Make it clear that unsupervised access to children or adults at risk or one-on-one photography or filming sessions, at the event or elsewhere, will not be permitted.

If parents or other spectators plan to photograph or film the event, they should be prepared to identify themselves and explain their reasons for recording the event on camera.

People who want to use photographic equipment at the event should be asked to register. (See our Photography Registration Form Appendix Form Template 10).

Parents, children, adults and carers should be made aware that if they have concerns, they can report them to the event organiser or the club’s Welfare Officer. The organiser or CWO should address these concerns as they would any child protection issue.


Guideline 15

Complaints Procedure

The Bowls Development Alliance (BDA), working with all the National Governing Bodies are all committed to providing a quality service for its members and working in an open and accountable way that builds the trust and respect of all our stakeholders.

One of the ways in which we can continue to improve our service is by listening and responding to the views of our members, customers and stakeholders, and by responding positively to complaints, and by putting mistakes right.

Complaints by children and adults at risk should follow the same procedure with additional support from the Club Welfare Officer.

The purpose of a formal complaints procedure is intended to ensure that all complaints are handled fairly, consistently and wherever possible resolved to the complainant’s satisfaction.

Responsibility for Action

The BDA Manager along with NGB officers with a Safeguarding responsibility are jointly responsible for taking appropriate action.


Apart from in exceptional circumstances, every attempt will be made to ensure that both the complainant and the BDA and NGBs maintain confidentiality. However, the circumstances giving rise to the complaint may be such that it may not be possible to maintain confidentiality and each complaint will be judged on its own merit. Should this be the case, the situation will be explained to the complainant.

Monitoring and Reporting

All complaints will be recorded and quarterly monitoring will take place to ensure procedures are being adhered to.




Stage 1

In the first instance, if your complaint concerns a Bowls Club Welfare Officer or a volunteer at the club and you are unable to resolve the issue informally or at a local level, you should write to your relevant NGB so that he/she has a chance to put things right.

In your letter, you should set out the details of your complaint, the consequences for you as a result, and the remedy you are seeking.

You can expect your complaint to be acknowledged within 4 working days of receipt.

You should receive a response and an explanation within 28 working days.


Stage 2

If you are not satisfied with the initial response to the complaint, then you can ask for your complaint and the response to be reviewed by the relevant NGB Board of Directors. The aim is to resolve all matters as quickly as possible. However, inevitably some issues will be more complex and therefore may require longer to be fully investigated. Consequently, timescales given for handling and responding to complaints are indicative. If a matter requires more detailed investigation, you will receive an interim response describing what is being done to deal with the matter, and when a full reply can be expected and from whom.


Final Stage

If you are not satisfied with the subsequent reply from the relevant Board of Directors, then you have the option of writing to the Chair of the relevant Board stating the reason why you are dissatisfied with the outcome. You must do this within 10 days of receiving the written response from the relevant Board.

The Chair (or their nominee) will respond normally within 10 working days to inform you of the action which will be taken to investigate your complaint, and when you can expect to hear the outcome of the investigation.

The decision will be final.


Guideline 16

Safeguarding Induction Process for Clubs

     Place copies of all Safeguarding documents onto the Club noticeboard.

     Have as an agenda item for discussion at every Club Committee Meeting.

     Agree the process for raising the awareness of Safeguarding to all club members, including coaches, volunteers, paid staff, parents of young children and those Under 18 members.

     Club to review the Action Plan to check they have all the procedures and processes in place.

     These procedures and processes to be reviewed annually.

Raising the Awareness

     Provide coaches with copies of the Policy and Guidelines.

     Bring parents of those Under 18 together to share information and in particular to hand out copies of the flow charts which identify what needs to be done if there are concerns.

     Ensure the relevant people with a responsibility for Safeguarding attend appropriate training.



Guideline 17

Roles and Responsibilities

Club Welfare/Safeguarding officer

The person within the bowls club has the responsibility for managing and reporting concerns about children or vulnerable adults and for putting into place procedures to safeguard these individuals in the club.

County/Regional Welfare/Safeguarding officer

The person within a sports organisation with the responsibility for managing and reporting concerns about children and vulnerable adults and for putting into place procedures to safeguard both within the County structure.

National Designated Safeguarding/Child Protection officer

The designated person within a sports organisation with ultimate responsibility for managing concerns about children and vulnerable adults and for putting into place procedures to safeguard these individuals in the organisation.

Case Management Group

The role of the case management group (CMG) is to manage the sports organisation's initial response to reported concerns about the welfare or abuse of children and vulnerable adults, and potential risks from adults or other young people. This includes the level at which the concern will be dealt with (from local to national), which procedures will be used and whether or not the concerns should be discussed with or referred to statutory agencies. The CMG should also monitor progress on cases and report to the organisation’s senior management or board on issues arising from cases and trends which require management action.

Children’s Social Care or Children’s Services

The statutory organisation responsible for responding to concerns about children and leading investigations about child abuse in partnership with the police. Also, known as Social Services.

Adults Social Care The statutory organisation responsible for making sure that older people, adults with physical disabilities, mental health needs, learning disabilities and Adults at Risk get the information, advice and support.

Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs)

LSCBs are responsible for local arrangements for protecting children and young people. They provide inter-agency guidelines for child protection.

Local Authority Designated officer (LADO)

LADOs work within children’s services departments and should be alerted to all cases in which it is alleged that a person who works with children (in a paid, unpaid, volunteer, casual, agency or self-employed capacity) has behaved in a way that has harmed, or may have harmed, a child possibly committed a criminal offence against children related to or behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates s/he is unsuitable to work with children. The LADO will support the organisation with advice and guidance from the initial phase of a concern arising to the conclusion of the case, whether or not a police investigation continues.




Guideline 18

Code of Ethics & Behaviour

What is the Code of Ethics & Behaviour?

The Bowls Development Alliance (BDA), as the umbrella organisation for the sport of bowls, has produced this document on behalf of the family of bowls in order to uphold the highest standards of integrity and ensure that the reputation and values of the sport remain intact.

It clearly lays out the responsibilities everyone has to ensure the sport can be enjoyed by all.

Who does the code apply to?

The BDA have in conjunction with the National Governing Bodies of bowls, set the standards that apply to everyone involved in the sport including staff, club officials, coaches and volunteers.

What is the purpose of the Code?

The Code of Ethics and Behaviour has been produced to protect everyone in the sport and to ensure that there is equal access and opportunity for everyone and that fairness and respect is upheld.

This code will allow the sport to ensure that the sports moral and ethical values will be followed across the whole family of bowls.

Generic Code of Ethics & Behaviour

This applies to everyone in the sport regardless of role

·         Always participate in the right spirit showing respect for others.

·         Never use inappropriate language or gestures.

·         Take reasonable measures to protect your own safety and the safety of others.

·         Always promote the sport in the best possible light.

·         Protect yourself from verbal or physical abuse and threatening or intimidating behaviour.

·         Abide by the bowls Equality Policy.

·         Abide by the bowls Safeguarding Policy, Guidelines and Templates.

·         Take appropriate action if there is evidence that the code is being abused.






Code of Ethics & Behaviour for NGB staff and volunteers, Clubs and County Associations.

This group has an essential role to play in upholding and implementing the code. All should be advocates of equality, fair play and safety. In addition to the generic ethics and behaviours the following are more specific to the roles of this group.

·         Operate within the letter and spirit of the code

·         Treat everyone with dignity and respect

·         Listen carefully to all stakeholders and respect their views

·         Promote the bowls Safeguarding Policy, Guidelines and Templates

·         Promote the Equality Policy

Code of Ethics & Behaviour for Players

In addition to the generic ethics and behaviours the following are more specific to this group.

·         Respect other players, coaches, spectators, officials and umpires.

·         Never participate when under the influence of alcohol or drugs

·         Accept success and failure

·         Set a positive example for young participants and spectators

·         Never use foul, sexist, abusive, racist or any prejudicial language and do not tolerate it from anyone else.

Code of Ethics & Behaviour for Spectators & Parents

In addition to the generic ethics and behaviours the following are more specific to this group

·         Remember that bowls is FUN

·         Applaud effort and good play as well as success

·         Appreciate good play by the opposition

·         Encourage all players to respect the opposition, the referee, umpire and other bowls’ officials

·         Offer encouragement at all times

·         Leave the coach to communicate with individuals

·         Respect the decisions of officials.

·         Show an appreciation of ALL volunteers and their efforts.









Code of Ethics and Behaviours for Coaches

In addition to the generic ethics and behaviours the following are more specific to this group

·         Respect the rights, dignity and worth of every person.

·         Help create an environment where all children and adults at risk have an equal opportunity to participate.

·         Help create and maintain an environment free of fear and harassment.

·         Recognize the rights of parents, children and adults at risk to confer with other coaches.

·         Do not discriminate on the grounds of sex, marital status, race, colour, disability, sexuality, age, religion or political opinion.

·         Do not condone or allow to go unchallenged any form of discrimination or prejudice.

·         Do not publicly criticise or engage in demeaning descriptions of others.

·         Develop relationships with parents, children and adults at risk based on openness, honesty, mutual trust and respect.

·         Do not engage in any behaviour that constitutes any form of abuse (physical, sexual, emotional abuse, neglect or bullying).

·         Be aware of the physical limits of children and adults at risk and ensure that training is appropriate.

·         Ensure that physical contact is appropriate and necessary and is carried out within recommended guidelines.

·         Always try to work in an open environment (e.g. avoid private or unobserved situations).

·         Do not engage in any form of sexually-related contact with children or adults at risk. Sexual innuendo, flirting or inappropriate gestures and terms are also unacceptable.

·         Explain to parents as appropriate, the potential impact of the coaching programme on the child or adult at risk.

·         Do not have a sexual relationship with someone under the age of 18 who you are coaching.

·         Ensure you adhere to the Safeguarding Policy, Guidelines and Templates.

·         Report any concerns you may have in relation to a child or an adult at risk or the behaviour of an adult, and follow reporting procedures.

·         Demonstrate proper personal behaviour and conduct at all times.

·         Develop an appropriate working relationship with children or adults at risk based on mutual trust and respect.

·         Always emphasize that the well-being and safety of the child or adult at risk is more important than the development of performance.

·         Do not smoke, or drink alcohol, while actively working with children or adults at risk. Never use recreational or performance-enhancing drugs.

·         Attend appropriate training to enable you to keep up-to-date with your role and matters relating to the welfare of children and adults at risk.

·         Hold “Coach Bowls” membership and hold relevant qualifications.

·         Ensure the necessary insurance cover is in place.


Code of Ethics and Behaviours for Young People (under 18 years of age)

In addition to the generic ethics and behaviours the following are more specific to this group

·         Always play fairly and apply bowls’ standards both on and off the rink.

·         Respect all advice that you are given.

·         Treat others as you would wish to be treated.

·         Show respect for ALL players regardless of age, colour, disability or gender.

·         Always report anything which worries you to a responsible adult (Club Welfare Officer).

·         Speak out if you consider that you or others are being poorly treated.

·         Always arrive on time and come prepared to play.

·         Always tell someone if you are leaving a venue or competition.

·         Treat coaches and other members with respect at all times.

·         Do not take part in any abusive, irresponsible, inappropriate or illegal behaviour.

·         Do not consume alcohol, smoke, take illegal or performance-enhancing drugs or stimulants.

·         Do not use foul or offensive language.

·         Do not publicly act disrespectfully to others.


[1] The Bowling Development Alliance Safeguarding Bowls Policy and Guidelines provide guidance and templates to assist with this