Ski Club launches resort rep service

4th July 2019, by Abi Butcher

The Ski Club of Great Britain's new reps will not lead guests around ski resorts

The Ski Club of Great Britain's new reps will not lead guests around ski resorts

The Ski Club of Great Britain (SCGB) is replacing its leading service with resort reps, who it says will continue to focus on social skiing.

The leading service was called in to question in 2014, when Ski Club leader Ken Piddlesden was stopped by local police in Val d’Isère — where, as in the rest of France and some other European countries, it was a requirement for anyone leading or guiding groups of skiers to have the relevant and appropriate qualifications. The Ski Club believed it was operating within the law because its ‘Leaders’ were not paid — though they did receive free travel, accommodation and ski passes.

Piddlesden was with a group of guests at the time and in January 2015 received a €10,000 fine from a local court in Albertville. The Ski Club appealed the ruling, an action that failed in May 2016, causing the organisation to rethink its decades-long service whereby ‘leaders’ have showed club members around ski resorts (both on and off piste) and organised social gatherings. 

The new Ski Club ‘reps’ will organise and deliver weekly programmes of social events, promoting and facilitating social skiing in 30 different resorts around the world. The reps will ‘encourage and help’ with the Ski Club’s Instructor-led guiding service, mountain guide bookings and be on hand to offer advice on restaurants, après-ski spots and any further advice in resort.

Crucially, these reps will be able to ski with members in a social capacity, but no longer lead them around resort.

Ski Club chief executive Ian Holt said: “We have made this change following a detailed consultation period within the organisation. In the current climate, it is clear that leading groups both on- and off-piste without the appropriate instructor or mountain guide qualification is no longer prudent.

“Whilst perhaps disappointing to some, this is an opportunity for the Ski Club to ensure our presence in the mountains can develop further, enabling the Ski Club to promote and protect safe, enjoyable and inspiring snow-sports experiences for anyone who loves snow and the mountains.”

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