Manager’s Travels

How are we all doing?

It continues to be a very busy season for AIM with many of you renewing at this time.  I hope that all your businesses and activities are continuing very well, despite more inclement weather than we experienced last summer.  Exams are over (as a mother of a GCSE student this year, I am breathing a sigh of relief!) and the summer stretches out ahead of us, with residential visits and summer camps.  As Members you provide a tremendous array of activities!  I have been lucky to try some of these for the first time recently, more below.

What’s been happening over the past few months? 

We had a wonderful Member event held at Lord’s Cricket Ground in March, followed by the AIM AGM and it was great to see so many of you there.  I hope that you found the day worthwhile.  Thank you to everyone who has provided feedback.  This really helps us to plan our AIM events.  If you have any suggestions for future member events, please let us know we are always interested in your suggestions for locations and speakers. 

What have I as Manager been up to? 

I am very much enjoying my visits to see as many of you as possible, covering lots of different areas of the UK.  My recent visits have included trying caving in the Mendip Hills at Mendip Outdoors which was great fun; visiting Scotland to see the Actual Reality Trust at Ardentinny, via a lovely ferry across to Dunoon, and then on to Ardmay at the top of Loch Long, both of which had stunning sites and beautiful scenery; and meeting up with Xplore and Klub Group in Stowmarket and seeing their beautiful woodland bush craft areas.  I was sorely tempted to don a wetsuit and swim in the lake at Waterland Gear (next time!) and I had a super walk around the historic house and site at Sealyham in Haverfordwest in Pembrokeshire.  I also had my first attempt at stand up paddle boarding with SUP Bristol, managing not only not to fall in, but successfully stand up paddling along the river in Bristol.  Thank you all for making me feel so very welcome at these visits and for your time in showing me round. 

James and I attended the Association of British Climbing Walls (ABC) two day conference in Sheffield at the end of June and met many of our current Members and hopefully some new ones too!   So many of our enquiries come from recommendations- thank you for those.  The conference was very well attended and a great event.

What’s to come over the next few months?

I’m off to the North West at the end of July then Wales and Scotland in October.  We have a Member event in Okehampton on the 7th October – details to follow but please let Cathy know if you would like to attend on

As always, the team is here to help you with queries and any issues.  Please do get in touch if we can help you at all.  I’d be delighted to come and say hello so do let me know if you would like me to come and see you as well.



Managing Risk – MS Amlin talk activities

Our supporting insurer MS Amlin came to our Member Day at Lord’s in March.  Mandy Maris their Risk Engineer went through a presentation on some top tips regarding managing risk within the activities and leisure industry.

Most members will not be familiar with how MS Amlin supports the mutual so this was a great opportunity to explain our relationship.  The benefits of effective good risk management theory and the relationship between accident investigation and claims.

Details of the presentation are included here for recap.  For members who weren’t able to attend the member day this is a fraction of the content from the day but hopefully gives you some insight into what is on offer at our events.  We really hope to see some of you at our next member days.  Look out for invitations which will appear in your inboxes or on social media.

You can read all about the last AIM member events here:-





ABC Annual Conference & AGM – June 2019

We are thrilled to be exhibiting at the ABC Conference this year bigger than ever at the University of Sheffield on Thursday 28th and Friday 29th June 2019.  We’ll be on Stand 2 along with many other industry colleagues in the exhibitor hall that you’ll be keen to speak to.


Tickets to the Annual Conference and AGM will include the following:

  • Access to workshops and seminars
  • Entry to the Entre-Prises Exhibitor Hall
  • Entry to the Rock City bar
  • Unlimited tea, coffee and snacks
  • 2-course buffet lunch on both Thursday and Friday
  • Delegate day pack
  • Discount on Hotel/Accommodation
  • Free parking

Workshops and Presentations 

The ABC will have experts delivering insightful and topical presentations along with panel discussions covering all aspects of running an indoor climbing wall

If you don’t already have tickets, find them at


Thrills and Unfortunate Spills – Clyde & Co

Our colleagues at Clyde & Co have put together a round up of recent personal injury cases affecting the activities industry. This article demonstrates that recent case law is positive for the activities industry but that businesses can always protect themselves further.


Birch Hall Adventures – Member Profile

Releasing Potential – Member Profile

Valentines Proposal ideas for Outdoor Lovers

You’ve found the one. And as if they weren’t perfect enough already, they love the outdoors just as much as you do. If your ‘significant other’ loves to wake up at 5:00 AM for sunrise hikes, and will jump into any lake, river, or ocean regardless of how cold the water is – and convince you to jump in, too – then you need a proposal that’s going to fit your relationship.

At The Activities Industry Mutual we understand that bearing your soul and going out on a limb to ask someone to spend the rest of their life with you can be a daunting prospect! But for all the adventurers among you, we want to help spark your inspiration for your outdoor, adventurous, and nature-filled proposal. So, here’s the scoop on everything you need to know; from the best time of day to pop the question outdoors, to actually getting down on one knee!

If you don’t want to take a big risk when you pop the questions maybe think about a romantic hike and a picnic instead.

Canyoning Proposal

Activities Industry Mutual Members, Adventure Britain, helped adventure loving Dan propose and caught it all on camera for us to enjoy.

Paddleboarding & Kayaking Proposal

If you and your loved one have an affinity for the ocean, then a kayak or paddleboard proposal may be perfect for you.

  • Why not surprise your other half by making your way to a beach or island together, and arrange for flowers, rocks, or seashells to spell out the all-important question when you reach your destination – “Will you marry me?”
  • Worried about transporting the ring across the water? Place it in the kayak hatch ahead of time and during a break, ask your partner to grab you some water from the hatch. Surprise!
  • Get your friends and family involved – organise for your partner to go out on the water with their nearest and dearest, and surprise them by paddling out to their location for the grand event

When To Propose?

Do: Sunrise and sunset are the most beautiful times on the water.  Not only is the sky gorgeous, but the water is often calm. Sunrise has the best chance of glass-like conditions!

Avoid: Midday – There is often boat traffic and strong winds or low tide which just makes for a longer walk to the water

Advice: Be flexible! The weather has a lot to do with the proposal. A windy/choppy day would not be ideal, especially if the ring is going to be on board the kayak or paddleboard.

Rock Climbing Proposal

“Imagine you’re reaching for holds above your head, unable to see the ledge until you reach up and grab it, and instead of an empty hold, you grab a ring!”

If your significant other enjoys pushing themselves to the limits, likes trying new things, and is athletic, but you want an outdoorsy proposal that doesn’t depend on the weather, a proposal with climbing involved may be exactly what you are looking for.

Experience Level: Intermediate to Advanced

This proposal is recommended if climbing is already a part of your life. For a lot of climbers, it’s an addictive sport that becomes a passion, so it makes sense to propose in a place that is a big part of your lives.

What if this is your first time climbing?

The experts do not recommend this proposal method if you are a beginner! “Climbing is not just physical activity, it is a mental exercise, so it might be overwhelming for you and your partner if it is your first time”.

Creative Proposal Ideas:

  • Before you get there, arrange to have the staff put the ring in a hold halfway up a route. Guide your significant other up the route and at the opportune moment, take the ring from the hold and propose while climbing!
  • Or why not lead your partner to the correct hold so that they reach up and find the ring themselves?
  •  A popular first date is climbing. Try to recreate the same climb or same events from the first date for the proposal.
  • Invite your friends and supporters to secretly come and surprise your partner and celebrate with you.

Do: If you want a crowd cheering you on after you propose, then a weekend or weekday evening is perfect. But, if you want a more intimate setting, then any weekday before 5, especially in the morning, is when you want to pop the question.

Avoid: Any climb that is too difficult! If he/she doesn’t get up to that point, they might not find the ring – or they may get frustrated from the difficulty, which would ruin the mood of the moment

Make Your Proposal Unique:

“Get your local climbing wall to help put the ring in a particular place at a certain time or reserve a particular climb for you and completely manage the process to make sure that it is perfect.”

Credit: Facebook, Bryan Rafferty Photography

Tree-To-Tree Adventure Climbing Proposal

Treetop courses can vary in degrees of difficulty, but pretty much anybody who’s adventurous can find a route that’s appropriate for their comfort level.

Creative Proposal Ideas:

Experience Level: Beginner to Advanced

“Each course has about 15-18 treetop rest stops between the obstacles in which to pop the question…There’s just enough room for someone to get down on their knee on the treetop platforms!”

When To Propose?

Challenge your partner to a ‘race.’ When engulfed in the spirit of competition, get down on one knee and propose – they’ll never see it coming! …Don’t worry!

Special twilight climbing hours in the summer provide the perfect time of day to pop the question and then head to a fancy restaurant for dinner.

Do: Any time is ideal. Want privacy? Any weekday, especially in the morning. Like the lime light? Plan for a weekend proposal.

Avoid: Any day that might rain!

A Mountain Top Moment

Experience Level: Beginner to Advanced

Creative Proposal Ideas:

  • As long as you and your loved one are fit and healthy you should be able to make it up the mountain. Make sure you plan your route, have all the relevant equipment, clothing and supplies you need- oh and don’t forget the ring!
  • Take your other half on an adventure up a mountain with a fabulous view at sunset. With the adrenaline from the climb and the sense of achievement once you both reach the top, take a moment to relax, take in the view and tell your other half how fabulous life is with them. Finish your speech by popping the question!

When To Propose?

  • Sun rise and sun set are beautifully romantic times to pop the question, especially with an amazing view.
  • Have Champagne and a bubble bath with candles waiting at home so that you can both refresh after your adventure!

When To Propose?

Do: Any time is ideal.

We hope you’ve been inspired by some of our romantic suggestions.

Good Luck!