Young Climbers

Exhilarating!  Exciting!  Challenging!  Fun!  Climbing offers youngsters a sporting experience that ticks all the boxes – it increases fitness and agility, builds strength, fosters trust between peers, develops leadership skills and helps children understand how to assess and manage risk.  There are many ways young climbers can get into the sport – family taster sessions are ideal for youngsters aged 7+, our climbing clubs ‘The Monquays’ and, for older children, ‘The Youth Club’ provide focused tuition and we welcome visits from schools and youth groups.  You can even celebrate your birthday at the Quay!  The centre has been designed with the needs of young climbers and groups in mind.  Our dedicated novice zone ‘The Quarry’, our abseil tower and our self contained boulder caves are ideal for groups to use.  As children progress, the wide open space under The Prow provides a great space for learning to lead climbing with the support of your peers.  Our maximum 1:9 instructor to child ration helps us deliver a fun and rewarding experience to each participant, whatever their age or ability.  If you are an experienced young climber and wish to climb independently in the centre, please see our Youth Policy for guidance.

The Quay is a Primary NICAS Centre which means we are accredited to provide all levels of the UK-wide National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme (NICAS) and our instructors are trained to deliver climbing tuition in line with the scheme.  NICAS is now taught in climbing clubs and as part of the school curriculum across the UK.  For more information about NICAS see our Youth Climbing Clubs page or click here to visit the NICAS website.

Our youth climbing clubs are immensely popular with all ages!  We run clubs through the school term for climbers aged 7-17 and also run a series of holiday clubs and training programmes for those looking to continue their climbing, or take it up, during the school holidays.

Our clubs are run under the supervision of our qualified instructors who focus on developing individual climbing skills in a fun and safe environment.

All our Term time clubs are full at the moment but if you want to join our Monquays, Rock-Stars or Youth Clubs please sign up to our waiting list here. Alternatively we also run Holiday clubs for all ages, ring the centre now for more information.

Rock-Stars Club for 4 – 10 year olds – Rock-Stars Clubs are guaranteed to be great fun and progress your FUNdamental skills for climbing. Aimed at younger children, the Rock-Stars Club is a great way to develop your child’s co-ordination, balance and agility. Becoming a Rock-Star is also a fantastic way to prepare your child  to join the Monquays clubs.

Rock-Stars Club costs £28 per month and runs throughout the school term.


gold badgeMonquays Club for 7 – 11 year olds – Monquays sessions are guaranteed to be great fun and develop your climbing through our in-house Monquays Award Scheme. Check out our Monquays progress booklet here. Our goal is for young climbers to move from the Monquays to our Youth Club able to belay independently and take the NICAS Level 1 Award.

Monquays Club costs £28 per month and runs throughout the school term.

During the school holidays we run Holiday Monquays every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.  You don’t need to be a member of our termly club to join – sessions can be booked up to the day before and are charged on a pay as you go basis at £12.50 per session.


Daisy Murtagh Cox on top ropeYouth Club 11-17 year olds – our Youth Clubs are immensely popular with climbers aged 11-17 year olds.  In the Youth Clubs young climbers progress onto the National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme (NICAS) which is a UK wide scheme, now recognised by GSCE exam boards across the country.  We promise exciting and challenging sessions including instruction in lead climbing for those who want it for an insight into the NICAS scheme check out the NICAS website here.

Youth Club costs £33 per month and runs throughout the school term.  Check out the events diary for term dates and call the centre for more information.


kids003Club Inductions  – our Club Inductions are designed to give 11-17 year old’s an all-inclusive introduction to the basics of climbing.  Run by our youth club team the course is designed to introduce you to the basics of climbing technique and safety making sure you’re ready to join our Youth Club.  At the end of the course participants will typically have acquired all the skills to pass their NICAS Level 1 awards.

Junior Inductions run for four hours total in two parts during the school holidays and cost £50 per person. Call the centre to book on.


IMG_2160 WEBRock Outdoors – Holiday Club
Have fun on real rock this summer with our weekly Rock Outdoors Club.  Aimed at climbers aged 7-14 years Rock Outdoors will give you a chance to learn to climb on rock and get stuck into some abseiling. You can sign up to as many as you like – just meet at Hounds Tor and bring a packed lunch, we will bring all the equipment and gear you need for a great day’s climbing.  Our qualified and friendly instructors will guide you through top roping, technique and basic bouldering.

Sessions cost just £39.50 per person.  Call us now for more details!  Sessions are weather dependent but we will always give 24 hours notice of cancellations and will rearrange sessions where possible. To sign up for Summer Holidays 2018 click here.


quayclimbingbirthdaybash2013photos-041Holiday NICAS Sessions
Young climbers, who are registered on the NICAS Scheme, whether as members of our youth clubs or through their school or other group, can take part in our Holiday NICAS Sessions.  These sessions run every Friday during the school holidays and are aimed at climbers who want to continue working towards their NICAS levels during the school break.

Sessions are led by our youth instruction team and are structured around the NICAS syllabus.  NICAS Sessions cost just £15 and last two hours.


quayclimbingbirthdaybash2013photos-026Quay Climbing Squads
Young climbers who show commitment and potential may be invited to join our development squads.   We currently run five squads:  ranging in age from 7-17.

Squad members receive intensive coaching and are encouraged to participate in local and regional competitions such as the BMC Youth Climbing Series and Blokfest.  We currently have a number of South West Squad level climbers as well as some that have climbed for the GB Youth Team and our coaching team is experienced with coaching climbers at the very highest levels of the sport.


Family Taster sessions are a great way to ‘have a go’ at climbing with all the family.  They are great fun and our goal is to ensure you have fun, try as many climbs as you can and learn the basics.  They make a brilliant present, holiday adventure or rainy day activity.  Family taster sessions are designed with families in mind and are open to climbers aged 7 and upwards.  Our instructors will show you all the basics of roped climbing and unroped bouldering.  The emphasis is on fun and trying as many climbs as possible – in no time you will be at the top of the wall and hooked!  All equipment is provided and your instructor will show you how to manage all the safety equipment.  Sessions last one hour and cost £12.50 per person.  Family Tasters run every weekend and throughout school holidays.  See our events diary for our timetabled tasters or call the centre to book a time that suits you.  All sessions run on a maximum 1:9 instructor to participant ratio.
Reach new heights on your birthday…with a climbing party at the Quay Climbing Centre.  We promise that you and your friends will have a party to remember as we teach you to climb and watch you and your friends scale the wall and hit the high five hands at the top!  You can choose from a Clip ‘n Climb Party or an indoor roped climbing party.   At Clip ‘n Climb you and your guests can challenge each other on our 26 themed climbs, racing on the speed wall, climbing face to face or balancing your way up the Stairway to Heaven.  If you choose to try indoor roped climbing, our friendly and experienced instructors will lead your session and will tailor it to your children’s ages and abilities – we are used to dealing with rock monkeys and those who may approach the wall with a little less confidence!  Our aim is to make sure your kids have the best fun at the centre.

After your climb we will serve you a feast in our party room – you can choose from our homemade pizza menu or a traditional party buffet, all washed down with water and squash and finished off with bowls of ice cream.  We can cater to vegetarian and special dietary needs.  Our party package costs just £19.95 per person and includes 60 minutes of climbing, a pizza feast (with margherita and pepperoni pizza)  or traditional buffet (comprised of cheese and ham sandwiches, crisps and sausage rolls) and use of our party room for 30 minutes.   Just remember to bring your own cake!  Clip ‘n Climb parties are suitable for children aged 4+ and indoor rope climbing parties are suitable for children aged 7+.  Call us now to find out more!

Climbing is becoming an increasingly popular activity for schools and groups.   It is exciting, exhilarating and challenging.  It requires trust between peers, leadership and objective risk assessment –all life skills that a child will take with them beyond the climbing wall.  It is a fantastic sport for building a sense of self-worth and confidence.  Indoor climbing is now recognised as part of the mainstream sports curriculum as well as having applications for children with physical and intellectual disabilities as well as those who face emotional or behavioural challenges.  The Quay has been designed to cater for groups of climbers.  Our dedicated novice zone, abseil tower and instruction space will help ensure young climbers get the most out of their visit.    We run sessions with a maximum 1:9 instructor to child ratio so that we can deliver a fun and rewarding experience to each participant, whatever their age or ability.

We are an accredited provider of the National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme (NICAS) which is the UK wide indoor climbing award scheme used in most climbing centres and now recognised by many GCSE exam boards as part of the sports syllabus.    As a NICAS Primary Centre we can offer in-house NICAS sessions but also train instructors within schools to deliver the scheme.  To learn more about the NICAS scheme click here.  We are able to tailor sessions to the needs of your group and have experience delivering everything from NICAS syllabus based sessions to individual coaching, gifted and talented programmes, to school activity days – often in conjunction with Clip ‘n Climb Exeter or Haven Banks Outdoor Education Centre.  We have also provided work experience for keen climbers in year 10 and 11.

Schools may bring their own instructors to lead groups or hire the team at the Quay to run sessions.  If you are bringing your own group please click here for more information about our Visiting Instructor Policy, in particular to check the qualifications and insurance we require.   We run programmes for teachers wishing to become qualified instructors.  Our Site Specific Scheme is designed to qualify you to instruct at the Quay only – we offer each local school the chance to train one teacher for free on this scheme.  Click here for more information.  Alternatively we run courses and the assessment for the MLTE Climbing Wall Award (CWA) which is the UK recognised indoor climbing instructor qualification.