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Fast Track Instructor Programme 2023
4th Dimension was established in 1987. It is a family run Company with a “quality not quantity” philosophy

We have developed into a multifaceted organisation offering probably the widest range of outdoor courses available from any one Company in the South East

What we Provide

Sessional, half day, full day and residential courses for young people and adults#Label
Alternative Curriculum Programmes for Schools and Colleges providing additional qualifications
16 Week Fast Track Instructor Programme
Management and Team Development Courses
National Governing Body training and assessment courses in Climbing, Paddlesport and Expedition Leadership
Off-site provision for corporate or charity events including large abseils and team building
Duke of Edinburgh Award Expeditions from Bronze to Gold and Gold Residential Packages

Schools, Youths and Adult Groups

We run day and residential courses, with over 30 activities available. There are 14 different High Rope activities, two Zip Wires, two Climbing walls and two Abseil Towers. We offer water-based activities including Kayaking, Open Canoeing, Kata Kanus, Paddleboarding and Rafting. In addition, for those less happy on open water or at height, there are two extensive Low Ropes courses plus Orienteering, Problem Solving activities, Bushcraft and Archery. Most groups select a combination of activities to meet all of their requirements.

Accommodation is camping (in tents, tipisor glampingshelters), indoor lodges or a combination of the above. The majority of our courses are run from our site in Sussex and are fully catered with breakfast, lunch, dinner and hot chocolate provided before bed.

We also run courses in the Peak District, Dartmoor, Lake District and North Wales. Activities include Lowland, Moorland and Mountain Walking, Paddlesport, Indoor and Outdoor Climbing, Abseiling, Gorge Walking, plus expedition elements of the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme.

Last year, we developed a learning outside the classroom curriculum-based program for alternative needs which sees young people, who may struggle in mainstream education, work to gain awards such as the National Navigation Award Scheme (NNAS), National Indoor Climbing Wall Award Scheme (NICAS) and Paddlesport Explore Award.

In addition, we facilitate National Governing Body awards including REC Level 2 First Aid, Lowland Leader, Climbing Wall Instructor, Foundation Safety and Rescue Training, Paddlesport Instructor, Climbing Wall Development Instructor, Rock Climbing Instructor, Paddlesport Leader, Paddlesport Touring Leader, Hill and Moorland Leader and the Mountain Leader (Summer) Award.

Sussex Based Activities

  • Artificial indoor and outdoor climbing walls
  • Sandstone climbing and scrambling
  • Abseil Towers
  • 14 High Rope activities
  • Bungee Trampolines
  • Low Rope activities
  • Water based activities
  • Problem Solving and Orienteering
  • Archery
  • Campfires
  • 16 hour REC First Aid Course
  • Basic Food Hygiene Award
  • Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme
  • Facilitation of NGB courses

Fast Track Instructor Programme

The Fast Track Instructor Programme is designed to offer an intensive introduction to working in the outdoors. To gain full benefit from this opportunity, candidates must be fully committed to the course, which will involve long hours and occasionally, difficult working conditions including inclement weather and low light. However, if you are prepared for this challenge, you will gain a greater useful experience as part of our team…and more importantly, ‘Earn while you Learn’.

This programme provides the opportunity for candidates to gain ‘hands on’ experience with real groups, which is vital to consolidate their qualifications. Following ‘in-house’ training and assessment, our candidates will then work with school and corporate groups, initially within our monitoring process, but then on their own activities.

This will continue throughout the remainder of the programme so that candidates will emerge at the end, not only trained in a series of ‘In –House’ and National Governing Body (NGB) outdoor qualifications, but also have a gained an experience base, which will be attractive to potential employers.

Fast Track Instructor – Outline Programme 2023

(Please note: This is only an example programme to give you an idea of what you may expect). There may also be additional work available over the weekends

In addition, our candidates will be trained in all aspects of safely managing day and residential courses for children and adults. Our training course includes all relevant aspects of Health and Safety Executive (HSE) requirements. Fast Track Instructors will gain a huge insight into the way an outdoor organisation is run, developing the skills and experience necessary to become a fully qualified and valuable outdoor instructor.

Accommodation is provided free of charge in large purpose built containers with 3 or 4 instructors per unit. A small fee for the season is charged towards electricity and gas. Kitchen and toilet/shower facilities are provided, as is a central staff area. We have a BBQ area for hot summer evenings! Food is provided when we have a residential course on site. At other times, staff are required to provide their own food. At all times, our kitchen facilities are available to staff.

How far each Fast Track Instructor progresses will depend on several factors:

  • Their entry level / experience in each activity. However, the effort put in by the candidate to reach the required level for each training and/or assessment course is usually far more important than their past experience.
  • Experience is not necessarily what we are looking for. A strong interest and willingness to learn plus the desire to work in the outdoors is paramount for this programme.
  • Hard work and full commitment to the course!

It is impossible to predict with complete accuracy what each candidate will achieve, this simply depends on their personal motivation level. As a guide, the following have been achieved by candidates who came to us with no practical experience, but with a lot of determination:

NGB and In-House training and assessment courses such as:

  • Lowland Leader and Mountain Leader Awards.
  • Rock Climbing and Climbing Wall Instructor plus Abseil Module.
  • Duke of Edinburgh Award Introduction and Expedition Assessors Course.
  • Paddlesport Instructor, Paddlesport Leader and Coach Awards plus Foundation Safety and Rescue Training.
  • Archery GB Coach.
  • National Navigation Award Scheme Tutor Award.
  • In-House training and assessment in all our roped activities, plus orienteering, scrambling, archery and problem solving.
  • Activity First Aid and Food Hygiene Certificate.

Previous 4th Dimension Fast Track Instructors have progressed to work in several areas of the outdoor industry:

  • Many returning as seasonal instructors with 4D.
  • Some taking management roles with 4D such as Operations Managers, Course Directors and Heads of PaddleSport.
  • Working as Instructors for other centres.
  • Progressing to permanent posts in other centres in the UK as well as abroad to countries including France, Dubai, Thailand and New Zealand.
  • Working as Freelance instructors in the outdoor industry.

4D provides all the activity equipment you will need for the programme. However:

  • You need to come prepared with clothing and footwear that will keep you warm and dry in the most adverse weather that the South East has to offer. We work and train in all conditions.
  • Waterproof shell clothing, warm under layers and sturdy waterproof footwear, such as walking boots, are absolutely essential.
  • 4th Dimension will provide t-shirts and a fleece as standard clothing to be worn when courses are on site.
  • We also have a wide range of trade accounts with various suppliers and regularly order clothing and equipment for our staff at discounted prices.
  • From the first day of training, you will be wearing a climbing harness, sometimes suspending your weight. The harnesses we supply are unpadded. We recommend purchasing a comfortable harness at the start of the season as you will be using this on a daily basis. We can advise on this during the interview process or at the start of training.
  • We do not supply Paddlesport equipment, other than buoyancy aids, because these are personal and hygiene sensitive items. A wet suit is suggested for training. You cannot learn if you are cold!
  • A head torch is essential as is a basic personal first aid kit (4D will provide group first aid kits when courses are on site).
  • Successful candidates will be asked to apply for an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check before training starts. This will be discussed during the interview process.

Fast Track Instructors will be paid weekly in arrears.

  • It is important that we spend a significant amount of interview time together in order for candidates to:
  • Gain experience of the requirements of a potential 4th Dimension Instructor.
  • Meet the people they could be working with!
  • See our Sussex site in more detail.
  • Experience as many of our activities as possible.

It also provides us the opportunity to see our interviewees in ‘realistic’ situations. Whilst it is unusual that we work late into the night during our courses, if a problem arises, our staff need to be able to deal with potential issues on behalf of our clients. Our interviews test the ability of the candidate to work long hours and when tired!

Interviews for the 2023 Fast Track Programme will be based at 4thDimension and will be held on Wednesday 14thDecember 2022 and Saturday 14th January 2023.

You will have the opportunity to meet some of the team who have previously been through the process and are now outdoor professionals in their own right. Transport to and from East Grinstead train station will be available for those travelling from further afield.

A more extensive equipment list and itinery will be issued to those offered an interview.

There are practical and team building elements involved in the interview. The process is very intensive and continues whatever the weather. It is therefore vital that candidates come prepared for this. A one to one review will take place at the end of the interview period. A full list of kit required, medical information, directions and more will be sent to all interviewees by email.

How to Apply

Apply by email to explaining why you think you would be a good candidate for this course.

Please attach a full CV with names and addresses of at least 2 referees.

Don’t forget your full contact details and date of birth.

Mark email applications very clearly as ‘Fast Track Instructor Application’ so that it does not get confused with any other enquiry.

Any written applications should be sent to: Operations Manager, 4th Dimension Ltd, Blackland Farm, Grinstead Lane, West Sussex, RH19 4HP.

Interviews will be held on both 2 different dates from our site on the Ashdown Forest. The dates are Wednesday 14th December and Saturday 21st January 2023. You will have the opportunity to meet some of the team who have previously been through the process and are now outdoor professionals in their own right.

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