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Payments Policy - DRAFT

Policy Owner: 1st Harpenden (Methodist) Scout Group Executive Committee
Date: 26-January-2022 
Version: FINAL.


1st Harpenden Scouts (Methodist) only charges fees to cover the costs of resources, membership fees, administration, insurance, transport, external provider fees and other costs incurred in delivering its mission. It doesn’t make a profit on any of its activities and none of its volunteers are remunerated for the time they give to the Group. Any incidental surplus made from activities is retained as reserves by the Group.

Late or non-payment can cause significant issues for 1stt Harpenden because external provider and transport fees often have to be paid in advance and are non-refundable. 1st Harpenden has a hardship policy (“Expenses & Hardship Policy that is designed to not exclude those who face a financial barrier from participating in its activities. 1st Harpenden uses Online Scout Manager/GoCardless for most of its subscription and event fee payments and Sum-up / GoCardless for most of its ad-hoc payments.

Membership Subscriptions

The rate of membership subscriptions is set annually by the Group Executive Committee.

  • They are paid by all youth members once a year, often in January/February.
  • We do not charge membership fees for our adult volunteers or Young Leaders volunteering in our sections.
  • Membership subscriptions become payable when a young person has been a member of our Group for more than four weeks. We will not refund membership fees, on a pro-rata basis or in full, where a young person has been a member within that term and their membership ends within that term.
  • We define “being a member” as starting when a young person first participates in our activities and ending either: when we receive notice that they will no longer be participating (or when they last participate in any of our activities, whichever is later), or when their membership is terminated by the Group.

Event Fees

1st Harpenden will often charge an event fee for activities that fall outside a normal section night.

  • The fee will only be used to cover the additional cost of running each event, including a contingency (which may be retained as unrestricted reserves for the Group, where it is not used). Our intention is to cover the event costs, we don’t typically expect to make a profit (except fund raising events) or incur a loss from an event.
  • We do not charge event fees for our adult volunteers or Young Leaders volunteering, the event cost for each member attending will include this cost.
  • Event fees must always be paid in advance of the event, unless otherwise agreed with the volunteer-in-charge of the trip. Places may be forfeited should a payment not be received by any due date without prior agreement, with any overdue payment remaining payable.
  • Any deposit is non-refundable (when there is a single payment for an event, this will be deemed a non-refundable deposit).
    • All other payments are generally considered non-refundable, especially if the payment due date has already passed or it is within 3 days of the event.
    • If attendance is cancelled to an event, the full event fee will remain payable. We will make refunds if the group can recover the cost of the activity.
  • Signing a young person up to an event constitutes an agreement to pay the full event fee. Should there be extenuating circumstances, payments may be waived under the sole discretion of the Group Scout Leader, Treasurer or Group Chair.


Any refund paid will have any transaction cost deducted from it. For GoCardless this is currently 2.95% of the original transaction cost.


All payments that are set-up, automatically or manually, will generate automatic reminders for payment. If a payment remains overdue for 21 days, the Group reserves the right to terminate the membership of the young person concerned. Termination of membership does not remove the obligation to settle outstanding payments.

GoCardless / OSM Online Payments

The payment facility provided is through a company called GoCardless, who are sponsored by the Royal Bank of Scotland and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. You are control of your payments, and are protected by the Direct Debit Guarantee.


  • When you set up a Direct Debit there is a box that can be ticked if your account requires payments to be approved by more than one person.  
    People with joint accounts sometimes select this in error, when it is normally the case that either account holder has full authority to carry out transactions without reference to the other holder. If you get this error message you will need to remove your account from the system and start again.
  • To do this, you should cancel your subscription in OSM and subscribe again. In the dialog you get to, click ‘Remove Account’ to remove the old dual-authority account and then start again. This time, when you get to the GoCardless screen, you should not tick the box that says you need dual authority.

You will be sent a Payment Request email via Online Scout Manager when a payment is due. You will also be sent automatic reminders as the due date for payment approaches.

We have two different payment schedules:

  • Regular Subs – this is for all annual subscription fees
  • Events – this is for all other events, camps, activities and one-off payments

In the payments area you can choose to subscribe to payments which means payments will be automatically taken on the stated date, or you can make the payments manually; the choice is yours. Whether or not you choose to authorise each payment individually, or subscribe to them all, you will be emailed each time a payment is needed and you’ll be able to cancel it if you want.

End of Payments Policy

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