MiDAS & Section 19 Minibus Permits
Cotswold Edge District is a member of the nationally recognised MiDAS Minibus Driver Awareness Scheme. To ensure safety of our young people, to follow good practice and ensure our minibus drivers are up to date with current minibus regulations we have a requirement that any adult driving a minibus to transport members of our district or groups in our district must hold a current MiDAS Driver Certificate.
Also to comply with UK driving regulations all minibuses being driven by Scout Groups or by District must display the correct Section 19 minibus permit in their windscreen (this includes minibuses hired from outside scouting). This page outlines information about the MiDAS driver training and assessment that is being offered by our district team and also information about Section 19 minibus permits.
MiDAS Driver Training & Assessment
In Cotswold Edge District we currently have two qualified MiDAS Driver Assessor/Trainers (and a third person who is shared with other districts) who can perform the MiDAS required driver training and assessment.
In order to gain a MiDAS Driver Certificate, which is valid for four years, the following training and assessment must be undertaken:
- Classroom theory session, which takes about 2-3 hours, covering driver licencing, minibus driving law and minibus safe driving and safety.
- A short theory test, 20 multiple choice questions, which takes about 20 minutes (taken at end of theory session).
- In minibus driving assessment, which takes about 1 hour, dates/times to be agreed with assessor/trainer in advance.
For those who have held a MiDAS Driver certificate which is about to expire it can be renewed (up to 3 months after expiry) by taking a shorter form of the theory session, a short theory test and another minibus driving assessment. If yours has expired more than 3 months ago you may be required to attend the full theory session and test. It may be possible to combine a refresher theory session with a driving assessment.
If you wish to apply for a MiDAS Driver Certificate, please notify us of your interest by sending an email to the email address in the Contact Us section at the bottom of this page.
Periodically there will be MiDAS full theory sessions advertised on the district calendar so please check calendar for the next scheduled one and if you intend to attend the scheduled session please complete the form at the bottom of the page. If you need a MiDAS certificate more urgently or have several from the same group who wish to be trained together please notify us by sending an email to the email address in the Contact Us section at the bottom of this page.
For the minibus driving assessment you will need to provide your own minibus (or hire one) just as you will be when wanting to operate a minibus for transport for your activities, this will need to be at your own expense. Please note that as your MiDAS trainer will also need to drive the minibus so you will need to ensure that whoever will be your MiDAS minibus driving assessor is included in the hire agreement / included on the insurance.
From 1st April 2019 we started charging for the MiDAS driver training and assessment to cover some of the costs of running the MiDAS scheme. The charges for the 2020-21 financial year are:
- For those with an adult appointment in Cotswold Edge Scout District:
|Table of charges per candidate
From 01 April 2020 to 31 March 2021 (reviewed annually). Cost Includes MiDAS theory session, multiple choice theory test, 1 driving assessment, pass certificate and administration.
|For the driving assessment you use the minibus arranged by the MiDAS assessor.||For the driving assessment you use your own groups minibus or minibus arranged and paid for by you or your group.|
|For those new to MiDAS taking the full induction MiDAS training (includes those whose MiDAS certificate has lapsed)||
|For those who are renewing their soon to expire or recently expired MiDAS certificate – taking the refresher MiDAS training||
|For those who need to take an additional driving assessment following a previous assessment where the minibus driving was not up to the standard required by MiDAS.||
- For those in scouting from another district or organisations outside scouting – please add the following amounts per candidate: For those new to MiDAS taking the full induction course add £35, for those taking the MiDAS refresher add £25 and those needing additional assessment add £10. Please email us, on the email address in the Contact Us section at the bottom of this page, to discuss your requirements as we may be able to offer discounts for larger groups.
Those interested in knowing more about the MiDAS scheme or are unsure of what size/weight minibus they would be able to drive on their licence (especially those who hold a car category B licence without D1 who can only drive a minibus plated up to 3500Kg MAM) can come to the full theory sessions an leave part way through if you then find it is not for you.
Section 19 Minibus Permits
Information related to previous Section 19 Minibus Permits:
- ALL old-style (purple writing on white background) permits are now invalid. If you drive with one of those showing, you are breaking the law. The only valid permits are in-date purple ones in the new style.
- It’s been over seven years since the new permits were introduced and these, too, have started to expire. Unless you’re brilliant at admin and know exactly when your permits expire, it would be a good idea to check your minibuses to make sure that they are in-date.
Groups, you will know how to order your own permits. However, you are advised to think carefully about the “classes” of persons entitled to be carried on the bus, as this has proved to be crucial (VOSA/DVSA have impounded minibuses carrying the wrong class of passenger). The full printable application form can be found at Section 19 Minibus Permit Application Form and in Section 4, you would be wise to write something along the lines of: “Members of the Scout Movement and their parents and helpers,” or “Members of the 1st Nether Wallop Group Scout Council and helpers.” Those of you with just “Members of the Scout Movement” cannot carry their parents, for example, as they are not members (but they are members of the Group Scout Council – but, of course, their grannies are not, but they can be classed as “helpers”)! What I’m saying is, think carefully and include helpers as a catch-all. The short Online Section 19 Application Form does not offer this option.
Explorers, despite what HQ might suggest, there hasn’t yet been a test case in the Crown Court about driving with an invalid Permit. You are therefore strongly advised to get your Section 19 Permits through Derek Forward (the District Explorer Scout Commissioner), issued to the District, because Explorer Units are not a legal entity, any more than Cub Packs are. The legal entity for Explorer Units is the District so section 19 Permits used by those driving minibuses for Explorers must have a Section 19 permit issued to the District.
Don’t forget, if you loan or rent your bus out to another Group or organisation, make sure that they also have a Section 19 valid permit, because they can’t drive on your Section 19 permit. Now that the first new-style permits are timing out, you might want to ask for a scan to be emailed to you if another Group or organisation wants to use your bus.
Note that if your Section 19 permit has faded and lo longer legible it must be replaced to remain legal. Faded permits can be replaced free of charge by returning permit (disc and form) back to scout HQ who can reissue the permit (if the original was issued by them).
To contact the District MiDAS trainers please Email: MiDAS cesd which will send an email copied to all members of the District MiDAS training team.