[holding answer 18 February 2008]: We have received useful feedback on the issue of under 18-year-olds playing in open age sport from stakeholders in the sports sector during the course of last year. It is not our intention to make any activity a regulated activity unnecessarily, particularly if that means children could be denied access to a wide range of sporting activity.
As a consequence of feedback from stakeholders we are currently consulting on the proposal that activities relating to the teaching, training and instruction of children aged 16-17 years should not be considered to be regulated activity, where the 16 and 17-year-old is part of an activity aimed at mixed age groups which includes adults. The proposals can be found in paragraphs 3.11-3.12. of the consultation document on the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006: Independent Safeguarding Authority scheme which is available on the Department for Children Schools and Families consultation website. The consultation will run until the 20 February 2008.
The Department for Children Schools and Families, Department of Health and Home Office will continue to consulting widely with stakeholders including sports bodies and organisations and will continue working with the Department for Culture Media and Sport and sports bodies to help inform Regulations and prepare for implementation of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006.