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Innovative Lake Ropes Course for Foxlake Adventures


RCD are currently constructing an innovative new Ropes Course for Fox Lake Adventures in Dunbar, Scotland.

This Aerial Trekking course which consists of 21 elements and 2 Zip Wires runs over a purpose built lake which will act as a collective safety system, if you fall, you will land in the water and then swim back to the start!

For more information and booking enquiries please go to


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Zipworld ready for business


Despite the heavy snow & freezing temperatures, RCD are proud to announce the longest & fastest Zip Wires in the Northern Hemisphere are complete and Zipworld Snowdonia is open for business.

Travelling at up to 100mph and 700ft above the Lake this will be an Adventure experience like no other.

Good luck to Sean and his team, we are sure it will be a huge success.

Go to for further information and to make a booking.


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RCD & Scout Association Partnership


RCD are very proud to have been contracted to work with the Scout Association at 4 of their national centres across the UK.

RCD are installing a range of adventurous activities for the 105 year old charity, each one tailored to the individual centres specific requirements.

All four sites are due for completion in early 2013, for more information on the Scout Associations National Activity Centres and what they have to offer please go to


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Original RCD fan descenders ?recommended date for decommissioning


The last of the RCD Fan Descenders was sold in 2005, by which time this tried and tested device had become dated.

Although there is significant empirical evidence to suggest the design of the RCD fan descender is sound ?nothing lasts forever!

It has come to our attention that many RCD fan descenders have now been replaced with a Powerfan?- a revolutionary fan descender designed for the rigours of everyday use in almost any environment.

The life of a fan descender will vary depending on its use, age and location; however, RCD believes that all its original fan descenders (as depicted in the picture above) are approaching the end of their serviceable lives and that within the next 18 months all of them should be completely decommissioned. RCD therefore advises that owners and operators of an RCD fan should plan to decommission them before the end of 2013.

In principle an old RCD fan descender can be "reconditioned"; however, this is not a service that RCD is able to provide because, in our opinion, the work required to ensure that all the components are safe to use (including NDT) and PPE certification would be unviable. Moreover, the design has been superseded and the standards to which modern fan descenders are designed and built are significantly higher.

If you have any questions then please contact Nick Moriarty by telephone on 07788 590971 or by email:


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RCD are proud to announce the opening of Treetop Trek


Treetop Trek is a brand new, state of the art aerial adventure based on the shores of Lake Windermere in Cumbria. The course comprises of 35 exciting elements and culminates with 3 x 250m long zip wires.

Go to for further information.


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RCD install the highest 5 person 3G swing in the UK


RCD have completed the installation of the highest 5 person 3G swing in the UK, the 20m high swing was built for Treetop Adventure, in Snowdonia.

Go to for further information


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RCD announce partnership with Zip World to construct the longest Zip Wires in Europe ?the first site in Wales


Zip World is a brand new entity, conceived to provide major Zip Wire attractions in the UK, the first site in Snowdonia is planned to be open early in 2013 and will consist of 4 zip wires, the longest being over a mile in length on which participants will reach speeds exceeding 80 miles per hour!

Go to for further information


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RCD build first Ropes Course on Guernsey


RCD are delighted to have built the first ropes course on Guernsey for the Bailiwick of Guernsey Scout Association.

Go to for further information



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New office and workshop for RCD


We have now moved into our new purpose built office and workshop in Hampshire. Our new contact details are as follows


Ropes Course Developements Limited
(operations / sales / deliveries etc)

Lasham Woods
Lasham Road
GU34 5FZ


Phone: +44 (0) 1256 381188


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Lyon Equipment - Recall for replacement - Petzl GriGri 2


Petzl have released the following safety notices to do with their Gri Gri 2 product


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PETZL Safety Notice


Petzl have released the following safety notices to do with their Scorpio and Absorbica products



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RCD install 30 metre POWERFAN® for Aerial Extreme


RCD have recently completed the installation of “GOLIATH” a new high adventure activity for Aerial Extreme in Milton Keynes.


The 35m long pole was transported from Scotland and then installed with the help of a 220 ton crane!



Now fully operational Goliath gives adrenalin junkies the opportunity to take the ultimate jump!


Aerial Extreme are now taking bookings, please go to  to find out further information



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European Ropes Course Association (ERCA) first UK conference


RCD are pleased to announce that ERCA will be hosting their first UK based conference in 2010. It will be on the 1st and 2nd December and it will take place at PGL Liddington - near Swindon in Wiltshire. There will also be some specialist training courses during the 4 days leading up to the conference.


For more details and to book tickets please go to the following link




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Ropes Course Developments to construct two new sites for Aerial Extreme.


RCD is pleased to announce that our partnership with Aerial Extreme continues and we have been appointed to construct two new urban adventure courses for 2010.


Aerial Extreme iceSheffield


The first course is complete and it is located in Sheffield; it consists of 34 exciting activities plus an adrenaline fuelled descent using the revolutionary POWERFAN?/p>


It is open to the public from the 17th July!


Aerial Extreme Trafford Centre The second course is currently being built in Manchester and will consist of over 30 exciting activities and 2 thrilling zip wires.


For further information and bookings please go to


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RCD lead the field again with ERCA first


RCD has become the first UK ropes course construction company to have an ERCA certified ropes course. This is the first ropes course to pass its independent inaugural inspection and receive the official certification to confirm it meets all of the criteria of EN: 15567 Ropes courses part 1: Construction and safety and Ropes courses part 2: Operation requirements.


The first certificate of its kind was issued on the 7th July for a ropes course we have built for Funtasia Water Park in Ireland we then had a further certificate issued on the 25th August for Kingswood Learning and Leisure ltd.


This is a milestone for the ropes course industry and once again RCD are leading the way.


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RCD to construct innovative ropes course @ Bristol Zoo


Bristol Zoo Gardens has announced plans to open an aerial ropes course within its grounds this summer which is to be built by the founders of the European ropes course industry, Ropes Course Developments!


The course will give visitors the chance to swing alongside some of the Zoo’s most popular inhabitants – gibbons, gorillas and lemurs.


It will be the first ropes course in Europe that is accessible to children as young as five and set within a zoo.


Planning permission has now been granted for the new adventure activity, which will be called ZooRopia.


The course will take participants on a route around the centre of the Zoo, traversing 17 sections themed around tree-dwelling animals. The course will include a net ramp, a plank bridge, hanging tyres, looped vines, hanging logs and a balance beam, and finishes with a zip wire onto the Zoo’s main lawn.


Jo Gipps, director of Bristol Zoo Gardens, said: “This is sure to be an exciting new activity which will give visitors of all ages a unique opportunity to swing next to some of our most popular primates as well as offering fantastic views over the Zoo. We are very much looking forward to opening ZooRopia to our visitors this summer.”


The course will be around five metres high and participants will use an innovative, continuous belay system so that, once fastened into a harness by an instructor, the adventurer remains secured to a rope and completely safe at all times. It also gives participants the ability to move freely and at their own speed.


Rod Baber, managing director of Head 4 Heights, the company operating the new ropes course, said: “ZooRopia at Bristol Zoo is the first ropes course of its kind to date. It will offer a fantastic opportunity for young and old alike to experience moving around like primates in a totally safe environment.”


Chris Proud, general manager of Ropes Course Developments, said “We are very pleased to be working with Head 4 Heights on this innovative new Aerial Ropes Course at Bristol Zoo Gardens; ZooRopia will be a unique and memorable experience for all participants”


ZooRopia is suitable for visitors aged five and over, there is no maximum age limit. Participants must be over 1.1 metres tall. ZooRopia is designed so that adults and children alike can take part (charges and restrictions will apply). The course will be staffed by trained instructors at all times.


Work constructing ZooRopia is now underway, with an expected opening in late June (2009).


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UK Ropes Course Guide – ready for downloading now


The Adventure Activities Industry Advisory Committee (AAIAC) has produced a very comprehensive guide for all those involved in the ropes course industry.  This guidance document has been compiled in co-operation with:


Health and Safety Executive (HSE)
Adventure Activity Licensing Service (AALS)
European Ropes Course Association (ERCA)
Recreational and traditional ropes course operators
Ropes Course Constructors
Ropes Course Trainers
Ropes Course Inspectors


The Guide reflects the requirements of the new European Ropes Course Standard (EN: 15567) but with specific reference to established good practice in the UK.  It is an essential point of reference for all those involved in the UK ropes course industry.  It can be downloaded as a PDF document from the AAIAC website:


The document will be updated each year and people are invited to submit comments on the document.  The process for submitting comments is contained within the Guide.


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Revolutionary POWERFAN® from DROPZONE™ With drops planned for up to one thousand feet! Click here to visit




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The European Ropes Course Association (ERCA) was formed over three years ago from what had previously been the German Ropes Course Association.

Prior to the name change most members were from Austria and Germany. It was realised that there was a role to be played as a European wide Association as well as the strength that can be gained from members from diverse nations.

Currently ERCA has more than 200 members in Austria, Belgium, The Czech Republic, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey.

Membership of ERCA is wide and varied; however, English and German are the two languages in which all documents are currently published.  The broad diversity of membership, from across Europe, brings with it a healthy cross section of trainers, constructors and operators.

You may, or may not, be aware that a European Standard for Ropes Courses is now available from the British Standards Institute. There are two parts to the standard: prEN 15567-1 ³safety requirements and test methods² and prEN 15567-2 ³operational requirements².  The enquiry stage lasts for five months. ERCA¹s contribution to the provisional European Ropes Course Standard has been immense. Six members of the ERCA board have attended the meetings in Germany and France over the last two years representing their home countries.

So what are the benefits of ERCA membership?

All members receive a copy of the ERCA standards. This is an excellent source of reference which is regularly improved and updated to ensure compatibility with European Standards, European Directives and ropes course operating principles. The ERCA manual incorporates:

  • Code of Professional Standards
  • Operational Standards
  • Installation Standards for Stationary Ropes Courses
  • Installation Standards for Mobile Ropes Courses
  • Technical Inspection Standards
  • Training Standards
  • Standards for Training The Trainer

The most valuable aspect to ERCA is its members - all of whom represent the European Ropes Course Industry.  Such solidarity is essential in an increasingly litigious and regulated world.

The Working at Height Directive is a good example of where a formal association can provide immense credibility in the fight against inappropriate regulation.

As well as this of course you are joining a body of like minded people from across Europe who share similar ideas and problems. The annual ERCA Conference is both entertaining and informative and provides a chance for people to share their experiences, trials and tribulations.

Next year ERCA is planning to offer accreditation to trainers, inspectors and constructors and is currently establishing the infrastructure to administer this process.

It is our belief that ERCA will eventually become a NGB. We would strongly urge all those involved in the ropes course industry to consider becoming members. Further information can be obtained from the ERCA website (


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