A wide-ranging consultation on a proposed new qualification for climbing-wall supervisors has closed.

Mountain Leader Training UK began the not-too-rapid look at standardising a qualification below the level of the Single Pitch Award, which was introduced for climbing supervisors in 1992.

Many indoor walls use in-house training at present rather than a National Governing Body qualification. Mountain Leader Training England produced its guidance notes in 1998 and these have been, in effect, the bible to which indoor climbing has referred to since then.

There's often a wrong assumption that staff at indoor walls must be SPA holders. This consultation was instigated at a voluntary leaders' conference in 2001 (yes, mountain training in the UK moves with the speed of an alpine glacier) and is the result of a perceived need for a qualification below that of SPA, held currently by 8 533 people.

Opinion seems to be that a national climbing wall supervisor's award is the best option, and the governing bodies (ie MLTUK and the 'home' bodies in each of the British Isles' nations) are now collating and assessing contributions from the public and interested parties before launching the award and any training scheme applicable to it.