Thurston Outdoor Education Centre: Raft building policy


  1. Introduction
  2. Venue
  3. Staffing
  4. Equipment
  5. Operating considerations

Revised: January 2022


This activity provides an opportunity for the group to consider how to assemble a 'floating vehicle' from a store of plastic barrels, lashings and spars. Guided by the instructor the group are encouraged to manage the design and build using teamwork.


Thurston Beach, Coniston Water, is the normal venue with craft construction taking place on the shore.

Any other venue to be approved by Head of Centre or deputy.


  • Ratio: The normal instructor / participant ratio.
  • Usually run by staff that have paddle sport qualifications or in-house training.
  • Appropriate safety cover needs to be provided and a full safety briefing given before construction and before going on the water.


  • Improvised rafting should be treated as a paddle sport session in terms of kit to be worn.
  • This will include helmets.
  • Instructor must have a knife.

Operating considerations

  • A suitable safety craft should be available.
  • If the session includes a journey by raft then the instructor should carry appropriate safety equipment.
  • During construction it should be ensured that there is no need to turn the raft over.
  • Care must be taken to ensure best practice in manual handling.