The Gold Award can be completed at any time by anyone who is 16 to 25 years old. You can enrol Directly to Gold.

There is no pressure to finish Gold within a set period – sections can be started when it suits.

UCAS and the DofE: My advice

The range of activities possible is endless because the Award is about recognising your own personal achievement. You build it around you and consider activities that you are probably doing anyway. For instance driving as a skill; an Extended Project Qual at school is a skill; an NCS week is a Residential; helping younger students at school is volunteering. 

To complete your Expedition you would need to complete the Gold Expedition planning/training programme and a Practice.  The Centre is currently working to the schedule below but there may be a catch up time next Easter. You have to be 16 to undertake the official Practice but can start preparation before you are 16.

Directs (ie those without Bronze/Silver) will need to undertake the base training weekend, day hike, and the First Aid Course – details here


8 Oct Planning routes for the Final
15 Oct Starting route and route cards on edofe mapping
22 Oct Cont with route cards. Briefing for 9+10 Nov
29 Oct Half term
5 Nov No Gold Session (Yr11 PIXLs) Drop in. Start at Slade Centre.
9 + 10 Nov Acclimatisation training on Dartmoor. Bunkhouse
12 Nov Cont with route cards
19 Nov Cont with route cards – ought to be finished by now!
26 Nov (Yr11 Mocks) no attendance needed by Yr11s
3 Dec (Yr11 Mocks) no attendance needed by Yr11s
10 Dec Last session, if route cards unfinished, until the end of June 2020


Practice: June 27-30, 2020   (If this is really a problem, Dorset will be doing their Practice 3-7July)

Final July 17-21, 2020

Please see the Activity Details page for events coming up. Detailed information is added to download 3 to 4 weeks prior to the date. 

Yr11s are free after GCSEs until Sept, and Yr12s will be given permission to do their DofE by the school. Yr12 Mocks can also be rearranged if approached early and thru the year head.

You can pop in for help or information most term time Tuesdays 4-7pm at any stage in your Award

To encourage the completion of a whole Award, which is usually the reason for investment in it in the first place, our other Centre stipulations to doing the Expedition are that other Gold sections are obviously underway or planned for the future.

We anticipate the 2019/20 Gold Expedition to be done and dusted by the end of July but there’s still work on the team presentation to do afterwards. To take part in this section of their Award Participants must attend DofE Expedition training consistently and take part in planning and organising their Final Exped. This is because the teams and the people in them have to be safe and ready enough to execute a self-sufficient and unaccompanied assessed expedition that they’ve planned themselves. On assessment, teams are remotely supervised and meet leaders at agreed checkpoints