New To Climbing

You can kick off with a Taster Session to see how you take to climbing (Little Monsters 5-7 years, Varmints 7-16 years), follow Link below to book, then if you wish, sign up after this for the NICAS (National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme) programme, which earns you Certificates of Achievement and takes you through from first steps to fully competent.

The British Mountaineering Council recognise the NICAS programme; check out this video which tells you all about it-


If you are able to declare upon arrival that you are a competent All-Climbing Climber (i.e. you can put a harness on correctly, tie in, belay, and boulder safely, then you can start climbing and supervise up to two novices or children.

If your Partner is also Competent, they may also supervise up to two novices or children.

If you are not able to declare yourself as Competent, then for everyone’s safety (including your own!)
you cannot supervise novices or children.



The National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme (NICAS) is a UK wide scheme designed to promote climbing development and accredit individual achievement on artificial climbing structures. It can be used as a starting point for people wishing to take up climbing and mountaineering. It is open to all candidates aged 7 and upwards.

The scheme is administered by the Association of British Climbing Walls Training Trust (ABCTT).  Nottingham Climbing Centre is a member of the ABC and we are certified to deliver NICAS up to and including level 5.

Aims Of The Scheme

  • to develop climbing movement skills and improve levels of ability.
  • to learn climbing rope-work and how to use equipment appropriately.
  • to develop risk assessment and risk management skills in the sport.
  • to work as a team, communicate with, and trust a climbing partner.
  • to provide a structure for development, motivation and improved performance.
  • to develop an understanding of the sport, it’s history and future challenges.
  • to provide a record of personal achievement.
  • to point the way to further disciplines and challenges in climbing beyond the scheme.

Structure Of The Scheme

The Scheme comprises five levels of award aimed at complete novices to expert climbers. The scheme is split into two parts and takes a minimum of 100 hours to complete in its entirety. Part 1 contains Levels 1 and 2 and Part 2 contains Levels 3 to 5. Upon registering with an Awarding Centre candidates receive a log booklet for Levels 1 and 2 and a log binder with booklet for Levels 3 to 5. After achieving each level they are awarded with a certificate on behalf of the ABCTT.

The five levels are:

Foundation Climber
An entry level aimed at novices that recognises their ability to climb safely under supervision.

2 Top Rope Climber
Aimed at promoting good practice in climbing and bouldering unsupervised on an artificial wall.

3 Technical Climber
A more advanced top roping and bouldering level that focuses on developing technique and movement skills.

4 Lead Climber
Concentrates on the skills required to both lead climb and belay a lead climber.

5  Advanced Climber
The top level that focuses on improving performance, a deeper understanding of climbing systems and the wider world of climbing.


The Nottingham Climbing Centre runs a number of supervised junior climbing sessions for children aged between 5-7 and 7-16 which run weekly during school term time.  The content and assessment of these sessions is based on NICAS (see above). Taster sessions are available in the half terms and school holidays. Check the Book page on this website for dates, times and prices.

5-7 year olds sessions

These sessions are likely to return in September, further updates will be given soon.

1 hour long fun climbing session.

To book any sessions please go to our Online Booking page or give us a call on 0115 9988233.

7-16 year olds sessions

These sessions are likely to return in September, we’ll post further updates soon.

The sessions are two hours long enabling the children to get the most from their climbing.

  • Tuesdays and Thursday evenings
  • Fridays evening for advanced levels
  • Saturdays throughout the day, several sessions on Sundays

To book any sessions please see our Online Booking page or give us a call on 0115 9988233.

The sessions cater for all stages of development, from the novice to the highly skilled youngster. The young climbers will look at all aspects of climbing safely within the Centre including bouldering, roped climbing, and abseiling. The climbers are taught in small groups and given the individual attention they need to advance.

The sessions are supervised by fully qualified staff and experienced helpers with considerable experience of both adult and junior groups of all abilities. Supervising staff are also first aid qualified. The Centre and its instructors are fully covered by insurance.

All safety kit (harnesses, ropes, belay devices and carabiners) is included. All equipment meets safety requirements and is regularly checked. Helmets are available for use free of charge – just ask your instructor.

We recommend clothing allowing free movement. Long hair should be tied back. Trainers are fine but special climbing shoes are available for hire if required.


Courses match Nottingham School terms so may by 5 to 8 weeks long.

Go to our downloads page to get current dates, times, prices. Bookings are made with payment in full.

Booking is essential. Contact us for more details, or simply book on line.


We run two Climbing Teams for youngsters who really want to excel at the sport of indoor climbing. Our teams compete in competitions at local and National level. Leah Crane joined our Centre aged five, and became UK Champion in 2009 and again in 2010; she is now a full-time climbing professional.  Maybe the next Leah Crane will also come from Nottingham Climbing Centre!

More recently, several of our youngsters have made the GB team, including Joe Czubkowski, Martha Lubczynskyj , Flo Tilley, Luke Tilley, Gracie Martin and Billy Ridal.  Will you be next?

Check out the Nottingham Climbing Centre Youth Teams website at:



Thinking of bringing a party to Nottingham Climbing Centre for a birthday outing or celebration? We cater for all ages and levels of fitness. You can even download an invitation from this website to send to your friends! You can select the date and time of your party on the website, and book the whole thing online.

The session provides one and a half hours of climbing under the supervision of our qualified experienced instructors. All safety kit (harnesses, ropes, belay devices and carabiners) is included.

See the Parties tab for more information.