01690 720214

Single Pitch Award Assessment

Course Overview

Before attending the 2 day assessment course, candidates must have attended a Training course, be able to lead Severe grade climbs and hold a valid first aid certificate.

Experience Required

Scheduled Dates

Detailed Course Notes

You should be 18 years old to attend this course.

Assessment pays a lot of attention to the log book and cannot be made without a suitably informative record of your past experience.

Before you book onto a Single Pitch Award assessment, make sure you have done the following:

  • You must have attended a Single Pitch Award training course or been granted exemption
  • You must have logged in your DLOG a minimum of 40 lead climbs, outdoors on leader-placed protection (a substantial number of these must be at least Severe grade at on a variety of rock types)
  • You must be proficient in the use of climbing walls, you can record your visits in your DLOG.
  • You must have assisted in the supervision of approximately 20 instructed sessions at a variety of locations, some outside and some inside (a session is a half day or evening) and have recorded these in your DLOG.
  • You must hold a current first aid certificate, minimum 16 hours and relevant to your work as a Single Pitch Award holder. You can present either the original at assessment or scan this into your DLOG.

  • Completed your Home Theory Paper, available to download here

Assessment content

This two day assessment, including an evening session, will be based closely on the syllabus requirements. Assessment will include practical, written and oral examination.

The programme may be revised at short notice to take account of weather and other considerations, in such a way as to satisfy the spirit and detail of the Single Pitch Award syllabus. The two days are generally split into the following areas:

The Environment

  • Current access and conservation issues

  • Understanding of how to minimise our impact on the crag environment

  • Knowledge of different rock types, and fauna and flora


  • Group Management

  • Introducing climbing through bouldering

  • Teaching/coaching a particular technique

  • Bouldering as training

  • Common injury and avoidance

  • Awareness of hazards

Local crag

  • Personal lead climbing at Severe grade

  • Choice of suitable route(s) for novice climbers

  • Set up bottom roping system

  • Set up top roping system

  • Assessment of anchor placements and rigging methods

  • Set up abseil and safeguard, as appropriate

  • Awareness of hazards, safety and group control

  • Different abseil devices

  • Solving stuck climber problem

  • Solving stuck abseiler problem

  • Tying on to rope, use of harness and helmets

Climbing wall environment

  • Group supervision

  • Hazards in a climbing wall

  • Warming up/stretching/warming down

  • Bouldering activities

  • Ropes climbing - top roping - belay technique, as appropriate

  • Coaching climbing technique

Review of home paper

Useful Books

  • Rock Climbing by Libby Peter (MLTUK official publication)
  • The Handbook of Climbing by Fyffe and Peters
  • Complete Guide to Rope Techniques by Nigel Shepherd

Also recommended reading 
  • Rock Climbing for Instructors by Alun Richardson
  • Mountain Skills Training Handbook by Pete Hill
  • Welsh Rock by Jones
  • Classic Rock by Ken Wilson
  • Mountain Weather by D. Pedgley
  • www.mltuk.org Website of the MLTUK

What's Included In The Price?

Whether you choose to stay with us or you have alternative accommodation nearby, the following items are included in the total cost.

    Free tea, coffee or selected hot drinks for the duration of your visit
    Afternoon tea & homemade cakes
    Equipment hire
    Free (low-speed) wifi access in the bar & dining room
    In course transport
    Railway station pick up & drop off (please call to arrange)
    Parking with CCTV surveillance
    Free use of climbing wall, gym, MTB skills course & rolling pool

    If you choose to stay with us, these items are also included in the total cost:

    Accommodation the night before your course
    Accommodation during your course
    Breakfast & evening meal
    Bar Lunch/packed lunch

Accommodation For This Course

Plas y Brenin Main House

Your course is based at Plas y Brenin, The National Mountain Sports Centre in Capel Curig, North Wales, LL24 0ET.

If you are staying with us,

If you have chosen to add accommodation onto this course or holiday it is usually in the main house in a comfy en-suite room (normally shared with another guest). Each room has tea and coffee making facilities and all bed linen and towels are provided.

This includes accommodation the night before your first day. Your room will be available from 6pm. On your last day you will need to vacate your room by 10am. It is sometimes possible to arrange to stay an extra night please phone 01690 720214 for availability and cost.

Secure storage facilities, showers and toilets are available for you to use on your departure day once you have checked out of your room should you need them, please ask at reception.

Also included, if you chosen to add accommodation, are all your meals - breakfast, packed lunch, afternoon tea and freshly baked cakes and a three course evening meal. Please bear in mind an evening meal is not provided on the night before your course or on the last day of your course but our bar will be serving meals from 7.00pm until 8.45pm.

If you are are not staying with us but coming in each day,

If you choose to come in daily for your course or holiday you will need to arrive ready for a 9am welcome talk on the first day. For the rest of your course or holiday you will need to be here for 9.15am. We return from a full day of activity, usually in time for tea and cakes at 5pm (included).

There are more activities from 5.30 - 6.30 on some days of your course or holiday, please check on the first day.

For most of our awards and qualification courses there will be further evening sessions on some days which you need to attend, please check on the first day.

There is an 8pm adventure talk by one of our coaches on Saturday, Monday and Wednesday evenings which you are welcome to come to. Find out more about the upcoming talks here.

On the final day you will be finished by 5pm.

For courses based on-site our bar will be serving lunches from 12pm until 2pm or you are welcome to bring a packed lunch.

If your course is based away from the centre then you will need to bring a packed lunch with you. Each evening our bar serves evening meals from 7pm until 8.45pm if you wish to eat here.

You can arrange to have any of the following meals - breakfast, packed lunch and a three course centre dinner, by contacting our customer services team on 01690 720214 or

follow this link for more details

What Equipment Do You Need To Bring?

Candidates are expected to provide all of their own equipment, with the exception of ropes. You should bring normal clothing and equipment suited to climbing on British crags.

You will also need:

  • Lunch bag/box

  • Drinks bottle

  • MT logbook and paperwork

Customer Reviews For This Course

Realistic pragmatic real world assessment

Peter Matthews

Having just completed my SPA assessment I can say that the approach taken by the instructor (Steve Howe) was the most real world and realistic assessment I could have wanted. Strongly recommend PYB for the quality of their staff. Completing an SPA assessment when it's snowing is pretty intense but Steve kept us all on track and encouraged us to deliver what we needed to deliver.

Facilities at PYB are excellent, and getting better every time I visit. The rooms are comfortable, albeit the pillows could be with being firmer. Not having to think about accommodation or food and knowing both are part of the PYB experience and are fantastic means you can spend more time concentrating on the important things you are learning or delivering. I highly recommend PYB and always have. I'm back in a few months for my ML training and I know that I've just got to turn up and learn and will have fab accommodation and scrummy food provided so there's nothing else for me to worrk about. 10/10 PYB!

Not found what you were looking for?

You can hire one of our coaches instructors or guides from only £250 per day. They'll tailor the day to suit your aims and aspirations perfectly.
You can enjoy one to one coaching for that cost or if you get together as a group, depending on the activity, you can split that cost between up to 6 of you. If you are a group we can run any of our courses on a date that suits you and your friends. Or you could just write your own agenda for a week or weekend and we'll price it up for you - with or without accommodation. What's more, just like out normal course fees, our private instructor hire charge covers all your equipment too. Click on the link below to fill in a request form and one of our coaches will call you back (or e-mail if you'd prefer) to discuss things in detail with you.

Fill in a Callback Form

Other Courses you should consider?

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