The Expedition section is the only part of your DofE that must be done as a team.

For various reasons, sometimes people cannot take part in an expedition organised by their own centre, but there is no need to worry - there are many providers out there who can take people on expeditions in just such a situation.

This page contains a list of expedition providers who can offer places on expeditions at some or all DofE programme levels (Bronze, Silver, Gold).

Programme planners, Activity ideas lists and Session planners relating to the Expedition section may be downloaded from the DofE website.

For a list of campsites, see the Campsite Database page.

If you are looking for extra people to join an expedition and would like it to be advertised on this website, please make a request through Oxfordshire Open Award and the details will be posted on the Help Wanted page.

Expedition Training

An Expedition Training Booklet is available for download.

It has been compiled from a number of sources by members of OXPED CIC (see below), and is meant to form the basis of a training course for young people prior to undertaking their practice expedition. It concentrates mostly on Bronze level training, but should be useful for Silver and Gold participants as well. Copies may be printed out for people to keep as a reference manual.

For reference, the Expedition Training Frameworks for Bronze, Silver and Gold levels may downloaded from the Expedition Downloads page on the DofE website.

The following is an example of the way in which expedition training at Bronze level may be delivered (many thanks to Our Lady's Abingdon for allowing us to describe their method). The first five topics are covered over five weekly classroom sessions of about 45 minutes each. The other topics are covered during an intensive training day.

Weekly sessions:
  1. General introduction to the Expedition section (45 minutes); 20 Conditions, required timescales, etc.
  2. Purpose and presentations (45 minutes)
  3. Kit list and rucksack packing (45 minutes)
  4. Food and cooking (45 minutes)
  5. Safety and emergency procedures (45 minutes)
Training day sessions:
  1. Map and compass; navigation skills (1 hour)
  2. Tents and campcraft (1 hour); including practice at pitching tents
  3. First aid (1 hour)
  4. Practical use of the trangia (participants bring a typical expedition meal and cook it on the trangia)
  5. Route planning; how to write a route card (2 hours) - participants plan their practice expedition


OXPED CIC is a long-standing group of volunteer leaders who provide a range of expeditions for young people from within Oxfordshire. OXPED is licensed as an Expedition Approved Activity Provider for the DofE, and can provide expeditions almost at cost price - the leaders are not paid for their time, and as a result the participants' fees reflect the actual cost of the venture, plus only a small levy to cover OXPED's licensing and insurance costs. Please follow the link above for more information.

NEW The OXPED venture diary for 2019 is available from the OXPED website.

Oxfordshire County Council Outdoor Centres

Oxfordshire County Council run a number of outdoor centres in various parts of the country:
The centres can provide opportunites for participants in both the Expedition and Residential sections of their DofE. See this brochure for further details.

Plas y Brenin

Plas y Brenin (location map), in Capel Curig, Snowdonia is the UK's National Mountain Centre, and offers a large number of expedition and leader training opportunities.

DofE Approved Activity Providers

See this page on the DofE website for a full list of Approved Activity Providers.

Qualifying Expeditions - A Reminder of the 20 Conditions

All qualifying expeditions must adhere to the following 20 Conditions:
  1. * Your expedition must be by your own physical effort, without any motorised or outside assistance.
  2. * Your expedition must be unaccompanied and self-sufficient.
  3. Your expedition must be supervised by an adult who is able to accept responsibility for the safety of the team.
  4. Your expedition must have an aim.
  5. You must be properly equipped for your expedition.
  6. You must have completed the required training and practice expeditions.
  7. You must undertake at least one practice expedition at each level of the programme, in the same mode of travel and in a similar environment to the qualifying expedition.
  8. * You and your team must plan and organise your expedition.
  9. You must be assessed by an approved accredited Assessor.
  10. * There must be between four and seven people in your team (eight people may be in a team for modes of travel which are tandem).
  11. You must be within the qualifying age of the DofE programme level.
  12. * All the people in your team must be at the same level of assessment.
  13. * Your team must not include anyone who has completed the same or higher level DofE expedition.
  14. Your overnight accommodation should be camping.
  15. Your expedition must be of the correct duration.
  16. Your expedition should normally take place between the end of March and the end of October.
  17. Your expedition should be in the recommended environment for your DofE level.
  18. You must meet the minimum hours of planned daily activity for your DofE level.
  19. You should cook and eat at least one substantial meal each day.
  20. You must prepare and deliver a presentation after your expedition to complete the section.
Don't forget that all your team must meet these conditions!

If you or one of your team have individual needs that mean one or more of the above conditions cannot be met, then you can apply for a variation to these conditions to enable you or them to participate in their DofE expedition. Your DofE Leader/Supervisor will help advise you if this is the case.

* Variations to these conditions must be submitted to the DofE Head Office as a variation request and will only be considered in highly exceptional circumstances.

A document summarising the variations guidelines may be downloaded from the DofE website.
Peter Knight,
10 Mar 2016, 14:26
Peter Knight,
4 Feb 2013, 02:59