Who we are
We are the SUMC: Staffordshire University Mountaineering Club! Put simply, we're a big group of all sorts of folk, brought together by our fondness for climbing, hiking and various other indoor and outdoor activities. Whether you’re a seasoned climber or new to the activities we offer, you’ll get the same warm welcome and experience!
Training Times and Locations
Below training sessions are all included with membership to the club:
Mondays 18:00 - 20:30 @ Kilnworx Climbing Centre - Meet outside the Sir Stanley Matthews Sports Centre at 17:30, transport provided to and from Kilnworx.
Fridays 17:00 - 19:00 @ Sir Stanley Matthews Sports Centre - Meet either in the reception area or in the sports hall next to the climbing wall
Sundays 10:00 - 12:00 @ Sir Stanley Matthews Sports Centre - Meet either in the reception area or in the sports hall next to the climbing wall
What we do
We regularly hold climbing sessions at our own wall, situated in the Sir Stanley Matthews Sports Centre at the Stoke Campus of the university, we're also holding weekly training sessions at Kilnworx Climbing Centre, an external venue which offers top rope climbing, lead climbing, bouldering and a training and weights room, all included in your membership! Please follow our Facebook page to keep up to date with the other activities the SUMC or our group members have organised! We can teach you the skills and techniques you need and make sure you're having loads of fun! We also have some slacklining, abseiling and various other activities, dependent on members and interest. If any activity isn’t mentioned here that you’d like to do, let us know!
Trips will be available at various times during the year for members to enjoy. These trips include frequent visits to other climbing centres around the country as well as trips to outdoor climbing spots such in the Peak District and Snowdonia national parks. We also take day trips for hiking and have confident walkers to lead trips into the hills. We also offer a couple of residential trips during the year to allow for more activities in the area. These trips are usually October/November, January/February and April/May, and are often around £35-40.
Climbing is a very sociable sport and we try to provide as many opportunities for this as possible. Whether its relaxing inbetween climbs or group trips to Ember Lounge for drinks and food after a session we try to let everyone get to know each other as best we can. We organise club nights out for the on campus events such as Gobble or Flashback Fridays as well as other activities such as meals out or film nights.
Where we are
The SUMC has its own wall, located at the Sir Stanley Matthews Sports Centre on the Stoke Campus, which is where we regularly meet. Socials are often in the Ember Lounge, just across the campus. You can use this map of the Stoke campus to find where these places are.
Stoke Campus is also a great location, as we are close to the Audley Climbing Centre, Awesome Walls Stoke and Kilnworx Climbing Centre, whilst the Peak District (with its impressive walks and classic British grit climbs), the Roaches (with superb climbing and hiking) and of course, Wales, are only a short drive away!
How much does it cost?
The membership for the 2022-23 year will be £68, which will cover your membership for the entire academic year. This price will also cover your entry to and equipment hire at Kilnworx as well as transport to kilnworx every week. The organised trips throughout the year are also at a discounted cost due to your membership fee.
Please note - The Students Union also requires that you purchase a standard £3 sports insurance fee, which covers you for all sports societies and clubs within the Student Union, and only needs to be bought once.
What isn't included in the cost?
Any residential trips, any climbing or hiking gear etc that you wish to buy, and some organised events such as visiting other climbing centres. We do however have some deals in place to save you money as part of the club, and are working on even more ways to drive down the cost for you, including subsidising trip costs and transport costs for day trips to other centres.
What do I need to join?
Other than a willingness to have a go, nothing! We recommend coming to one of the Give it a Go sessions we hold during the first week of term (come to our sports and societies fair for details on give it a go sessions) to see if you enjoy it! Best thing to wear would be some comfortable, baggy clothes and trainers, so gym clothes or even jogging bottoms and a hoodie would be fine.
Do I need to own any equipment?
You don’t need to bring anything with you! The club boasts a good range of kit, including helmets and harnesses to give everyone the chance to try climbing!
Do I need to be physically fit to join?
No! Anyone can join and take part in activities regardless of fitness level. Certain medical issues may prevent you from taking part in some activities, so if this is a concern please contact us and we can advise you accordingly.
I am disabled, can I still join?
Most disabilities can be catered for, and we currently have a diverse membership with some disabled members. At the present time, we do not have the correct equipment to help wheelchair users or severely disabled students climb safely, but we do have information on plenty of places that can accommodate you! As above, if this is a concern please contact us and we can advise you accordingly.
Do you do any trips?
We sure do! We aim to have three residential trips each year, staying for two nights (possibly a whole week in summer depending on price) each time. Trips are usually October/November, January/February and April/May, and are often around £35-40. This charge covers all travel, food and lodgings, so a lot is included for your money! These really are amazing experiences every time, and if you’d like to see for yourself, have a look at our trip logs and blog posts on our website!
Please Note: We are trying to drive down the cost of these trips so they'll be even less,
Do you have social events that aren’t to do with climbing/hiking?
We do! Throughout the year we hold various socials, including (but by no means limited to) movie nights, house parties, meals out and much more! Basically, if there’s an idea for a social and enough people want to do it, we’ll try to get it organised!
Do you compete in competitions?
Absolutely! We look to participate in formal and informal competitions when and where we can, and are looking for more members to get involved with competing!
The Committee Members for 2022-2023
James Owen - Chairman
Daniel Sneddon - Finance
Molly Holmes - Comms
Kai Stevens - Comms
Emily Turrell - Comms
Interested in joining the club? Get in contact with us! You can do this either through facebook or instagram (@staffs_mountaineering) :)