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Duke of Edinburgh's Award

What is The Duke of Edinburgh's Award

The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is a personal programme of activities for young people aged 14 - 24. The programme involves four sections, Volunteering, Physical, Skills, Expedition (and for Gold, a Residential) which when completed lead to three levels of qualification, Bronze, Silver and Gold.

Students may choose what to do for each section so that their programme is full of activities and projects that are exciting and engaging for them. Whilst completing the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is certainly an asset to CVs, Sixth Form and University applications, this should not be the primary reason for undertaking the Award. This is a challenging programme which requires a high level of self-motivation and enthusiasm in order to provide an enjoyable and rewarding experience for students.

Along the way they could find themselves helping people or the community, getting fitter, developing new skills, picking up experiences, friends and talents that will stay with them for the rest of their lives. At St Christopher’s we offer Bronze level to Year 10 pupils, Silver in Year 11 and Gold in the Sixth Form.

Expedition Dates 2024


Fri 10th and Sat 11th May (Group A)
Sun 12th and Mon 13th May (Group B)
Practice Expedition (day walks)

Sun 16th June:
Campcraft Training Day in school

Wed 3rd - Thu 4th July (Group A)
Thu 4th - Fri 5th July (Group B)
Qualifying Expedition (inc. an overnight camp)

Letter to Parents (Bronze Qualifying)
• Bronze Expedition Kit List
Menu Planner (Bronze Expedition)


Fri 19th (after school) - Sun 21st April:
Practice Expedition

Thu 2oth - Sat 22nd June:
Qualifying Expedition

Letter to Parents (Silver Qualifying)
Expedition Kit List (Silver Qualifying)
Menu Planner (Silver Qualifying)


Sun 19th May
Training Day in Sixth Form

Fri 7th (after school) - Tue 11th June:
Practice Expedition

Fri 13th (after school) - Tues 17th Sept:
Qualifying Expedition

Letter to Parents (Gold Practice)
Expedition Briefing (Gold Practice)
Gold Expedition Kit List
Menu Planner (Gold Practice)


Bronze (14+ years old)





3 months

3 months

3 months

Plan, train for and undertake a 2 day, 1 night expedition.

All participants must undertake a further 3 months in one of the Volunteering, Physical or Skill sections.

Silver (15+ years old)





6 months

One section for 6 months and the other section for 3 months.

Plan, train for and undertake a 3 day, 2 night expedition.

Gold (16+ years old)






12 months

One section for 12 months and the other section for 6 months.

Plan, train for and undertake a 4 day, 3 night expedition.

Undertake a shared activity in a residential setting away from home for 5 days and 4 nights.


The aim of the Volunteering section is to inspire young people to make a difference with- in their community or to an individual’s life and develop compassion by giving service to others.

Volunteering Categories:

  • Helping people
  • Community action and raising awareness
  • Coaching, teaching and leadership
  • Working with the environment or animals
  • Helping a charity or community organisation


The aim of the Physical section is to inspire young people to achieve greater physical fitness and a healthy lifestyle through participation and improvement in physical activity.

Physical Categories:

  • Team sports
  • Individual sports
  • Water sports
  • Racquet sports
  • Fitness
  • Extreme sports
  • Dance
  • Martial arts


The aim of the Skills section is to inspire young people to develop practical and social skills and personal interests.

Skill Categories:

  • Creative arts
  • Performance arts
  • Science and technology
  • Care of animals
  • Music
  • Life skills
  • Learning and collecting
  • Media and communication
  • Natural world

It is recommended that pupils undertake each of their chosen activities for a minimum of one hour per week for the appropriate timescale. This can be an opportunity to take on something new or to gain recognition for activities already being undertaken.

Progression and development in the activity should be assessed by a relevant coach or supervisor, this may not be a parent. If students are undertaking an individual activity such as cooking or jogging, they should take photographs, upload recipes, use mapping and tracking apps to provide evidence and then ask a family friend or more distant relative to complete and sign their assessor’s card.


The aim of the Expedition is to inspire young people to develop initiative and a sense of adventure and discovery, by planning, training for and completing an adventurous journey as part of a team.

Training sessions take place after school on Mondays (Silver; Year 11), Tuesdays (Gold; Lower Sixth) and Wednesdays (Bronze; Year 10). This is not every week of the academic year and a list of exact dates will be provided once pupils have registered for the Award.

In addition, pupils undertake at least one practice expedition as part of their training. This is more closely supervised than the assessed qualifying expedition, which is remotely supervised to develop independence and a sense of personal responsibility.

Expedition dates in 2023 are listed above. Parents and pupils are asked to consider carefully whether they are able to meet these demands and there is often a decision to be made about clashes with existing commitments such as extra-curricular activities or part-time work.

Please ensure pupils are able to make the necessary commitment before applying.


Pupils are asked to make their applications by letter, stating clearly and in as much detail as possible why they want to do the Award and why they would be a good candidate to take on the Award.

There are a limited number of places available, 70 for Bronze, 42 for Silver and 28 for Gold. Particularly for the Bronze Award, the number of applicants regularly exceeds the number of places. Unfortunately, we are unable to increase these numbers due to restrictions on resources.

The decision as to whether or not pupils are allocated a place will be based primarily on their letter of application, which will be considered within the context of their level of academic ability. Letters should be handed to Miss Sutton (Careers Office). At Silver and Gold levels, prior commitment to the Award will also be taken into account.

The cost of participating in the Award is £90 for Bronze, £130 for Silver and £220 for Gold, which can be paid in instalments.

If you have specific questions or would like further information on any element of the Duke of Edinburgh programme at St Christopher’s, please contact: Miss D Sutton, Mr W McManus or Mrs B Mulhall on the school number: 01254 232992 or email dofe@st-christophers.org

Find out more about the Duke of Edinburgh Award at the official website here.