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The DBS Update Service Scheme

How does the Update Service work?

The DBS Update Scheme:For more information go to 

The Disclosure & Barring Service introduced the DBS Update Service in 2013. Being part of the Update Service means DBS certificates are routinely kept up to date so they can be used by different organisations and an applicant will only ever need ONE DBS certificate. Instead of applying for a new DBS each time an organisation can run an online check on the applicant’s certificate to find out whether there has been a change in their criminal record since the certificates issue. 

The system has been set up for individuals to subscribe to the Update scheme separately to completing their DBS application. They can either apply whilst their application is in processing or within 19 days of receiving their DBS certificate. Subscription is free of charge for volunteers. 

How can volunteers subscribe to the Update Service?

Woodcraft Folk members can apply directly to the Update Scheme by going to or request that Head Office can sign them up to the scheme. All they’ll need to do is either: 

  • Advise Head Office by email at or 
  • Fill in the tick box found on the online membership application form 

In addition to this members can also give us permission to automatically renew their DBS (every 3 years) by running the online check without needing to contact them as long as they’re a current member of Woodcraft Folk. 

If a volunteer is already a member of the Update Service Scheme?

If a member has subscribed to the Update service using a DBS certificate from another organisation they’ll need to have their original DBS certificate witnessed by a DBS verifier in the District or the Membership Secretary. The DBS verifier will then need provide Head Office with the volunteers name, date of birth and certificate number so the online check can be completed. This information can either be provided by email or via our online form. Once completet the volunteer’s information will be updated on our Groop database.

If a member has subscribed to the Update service using their Woodcraft Folk DBS certificate and has not given us permission for automatic checking they’ll be contacted by email to seek their permission to run an online check at the point of renewal. We’ll not need their certificate to be witnessed as we have their certificate information on record.   

Please note we’ll only accept DBS certificates from other organisations if the member has joined the Update Scheme.


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