Want to know who’s booked in this year?

This table reflects our freelance setting schedule; they are all booked within the first week of the month and often include a full reset of the Competition Wall & Slab.

2024 Competition Calendar

February 1st – 9th: Mega Series Round 1
April 2nd – 10th: Mega Series Round 2
June 4th – 12th: Mega Series Round 3
August 1st – 9th: Mega Series Round 4
BMC Youth Climbing Series: October 19th (Centre closed)
October 20th: Mega Series Round 5
December 7th: Mega Series Finals (Invite only)

In-House Setting Programme

We have a couple of employment pathways within the company that are designed to offer additional skills to the team. Any member of the Shack team can join this pathway and begin their journey towards becoming a route setter.

The In-House Team sets EVERY Friday, this takes the form of setting a ‘zone’ or ‘area’ of the centre. The size of the area is dictated by the number of, and experience levels of those setting on the day.

Grades – The Shack Method

We don’t believe in coloured hold circuits dictating the grade, where is the variation? It limits setters to use the same holds for the same grades repeatedly, something that can get quite difficult to mix up styles etc.  For us, colour of hold is simply the path we set; grade is dictated by our starting tags.

There are two levels of information denoted by the start tags (other than where to start with your hands); difficulty and style.

‘Difficulty’ is shown by the shape on the tag! The more sides the shape has, the harder the climb.  We decided in the Autumn of 2022 to go gradeless in regard to not telling you the VGrade of each climb.  This is due to a multitude of factors, but simply a large disparity between centres; and the style of the boulder makes a significant difference.  You may well find you climb harder in one style than the other…

‘Style’ is shown by the colour of the tag: Blue – Powerful (A simple sequence that requires an amount of grunt (relative to the grade)), White – Committing (These boulders require focus, poise and precision (often referred to as ‘wobbly’)) & Yellow – Puzzling (These boulders have a sequence, that if you get right makes the climb flow and feel OK for the grade; miss the sequence and they may feel tough for the grade).

Meet the team

Ollie Wragg

Ollie has led the setting at Shack since he joined the team in 2017.  Here’s what he said about himself: 

I think most people will know my general style as techy, body position dependent wobble.  I’m 20.2cm shorter than the National average so don’t try that “the setter must be a giant” thing 😉.  Outside of Shack I’m proud to Official for GB Climbing at the National Competition Series, and had the opportunity to judge at the IFSC Lead World Cup in Edinburgh 2022.  It’s hard not to get inspired at these events, and I try to bring part of that to Shack…

Beth Rose Jones

“You may know me as crimpy queen. If there’s a route with impossible looking crimps, there is an 80% chance I set it. But very occasionally, I set something good with some different holds.”

Alex Witchell

“I’ll turn any angle into a slab; long live the sketchy tekky blocs that scare you and confuse you and all in all make you question your life choices.”

Freddie Hostettler

Bio incoming…

Jo Hughes

I don’t have a specific style, yet somehow my routes are always recognisable, so I’m told. I’ll set whatever suits me that day, from slow and balanced, to dynamic jumps and swings.”

Ever wanted to give setting a go?

Did you know we run a session called ‘Community Route Setting’? The aim of this session is to give you time with one of our in-house setters where you learn the basics of route setting practice and put some blocs on the wall.   The blocs will stay on the wall once the session has finished and you can brag to your mates that one belongs to you…

Working in partnership

We’re proud to be working in partnership with the best in the industry.