Home > All sections > Newsletter January 2016 – Group Celebrates 70 Years Scouting


13th Wimbledon Scout Group and St Saviour’s Explorer Scout 

Newsletter January 2016

Group Celebrates 70 years

An estimated 140 people packed St Saviour's church on December 17th to celebrate Christmas and commemorate 70 years of scouting at St Saviour's. The congregation included over 20 past members and their families dating back to the 1970s. The scouts made a presentation about the history of the scout Group that was founded in 1945 by the Reverend Eyden, the vicar of St Saviour's at the time. A souvenir history of the Group was also compiled for everyone who attended. Carols were sung, the beavers told Christmas jokes and the cubs wished everyone 'Merry Christmas' in a host of different languages. The explorers also showed a specially compiled DVD of their trip to Austria with the scouts in the Summer.

The District Commissioner, Joe Rogerson, provided encouragement and food for thought before presenting Steve Lyon and Graham Coverdale with their wood badges that signified they had completed their training as Cub Scout Leader and assistant Cub Scout Leader respectively. He then presented Jack Murray with a Personal Award from the Chief Scout. Jack completed a junior triathlon and raised over £1300 for Cancer Care following the tragic death of a school friend of his.

Mulled wine and mince pies were on hand afterwards while current Group members, parents, past and current leaders and representatives from the church happily mingled exchanging stories and the cubs and beavers played a specially adapted version of the game 'Where's Wally?'.

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Singing carols – but can you find Wally? Beavers and cubs sing Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer  
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Jack receives the Chief Scout's Personal Award Some of the leaders who joined us from the past 40 years Wally

Census could be the best on record

Figures have yet to be validated but this year's census of members of the Group could be one of the best on record. We anticipate the final number of youth members of the Group, including explorers, will be between 85 and 90. As far as I have been able to ascertain, previous highs were in 2013 when we recorded 86 youth members and 1986 when we recorded 87. We need to submit our return by January 26 by which time we should know how many new joiners we have had in the New Year and whether anyone has left.

Scouts Remember

img6The scouts attended the Remembrance Day Service in Wimbledon Village again this year while the cubs joined the St Saviour's congregation and presented flags around the war memorial.

The scouts also ran side shows at the St Saviour's Christmas fair raising £50 for The Lunchbowl Network , a charity they selected themselves.


Windsor ride

Over two dozen scouts, explorers, leaders and parents turned out for a bike ride to Windsor in November taking in Wimbledon Common and Richmond Park along the way. Parents provided support at check points as the riders meandered their way along the Thames path. The group included riders aged from 10 to over 60 who took a little under six hours to complete the trip.

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The riders and support crew at Ham Gate                        The Thames Path

Fine Group performance in District Swimming Gala

The scouts achieved 2nd place in the annual scout swimming gala against very strong competition. The cubs came third missing second place by just one point. Overall the Group came second in the competition for the Group trophy and third in the Group relay – a team consisting of two cubs and two scouts. Well done teams – excellent results all round!


The scout team


Scouts sweep the board in Incident Hike

At the annual District incident Hike the 13th teams swept the board taking 1st, 2nd and 3rd places. The hike involved walking (or running!) around a course undertaking challenging tasks at each of six bases en route. Points were scored for how well the tasks were completed and the time taken to complete the course. Seven teams took part altogether.

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13th Wimbledon Teams A & B Team C

The scouts also won the District Scout Quiz competition


Kelvin strengthens troop leadership

We are delighted to announce that Kelvin Shewry has joined the Group as Assistant Scout Leader. Kelvin was brought up on the Cayman Islands where he was involved in a group called KATS – Kids and the Sea – but was educated at a boarding school in Croydon. He enjoys outdoor adventure and was involved in an expedition in the jungles of Bolivia with his gear been carried by Ox cart. He is currently working for the Merton Heritage Service on a project supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund looking at Merton's links to the First World War.

His arrival has considerably reduced the average age of the leaders of the scout section and, with around 30 scouts in the troop, his presence is most welcome.

Beavers welcome new leaders

Last term the beavers were pleased to welcome new leaders, Shakeel and Dawn, to the 13th. They arrived in time to help introduce some of the exciting new badges we will be working on in the coming terms.

Along with learning about tents, camp kit and knots for the Camp Craft badge the beavers also gained the new Teamwork Challenge award this term. This involved a pioneering project involving marshmallows and spaghetti towers to see which team could build the tallest and many team games and projects.

The Explorers visited the colony and gave the Beavers an insight into many of the exciting activities they can be involved in during their time in Scouting. They also gave a fascinating talk on their time at the World Jamboree in Japan and other adventures.

This term the beavers will be working on more new badges including Cook and Experiment activities. The older beavers will also be working on a tailored individual Personal Challenge award alongside a Skills Challenge for all.

Explorers conquer four peaks


Near Glyder Fach looking towards Tryfan

The explorers joined other units from the district for a trip to Snowdonia at the end of October.
This group took in the four peaks of Y Garn, Glyder Fawr, Glyder Fach and Tryfan (seen in the background of the picture). Conditions were ideal with party members walking in shirt sleeves and even shorts across the summits.



Cubs' magical term

The cubs have had a very active term. Among other things they celebrated Guy Fawkes night with fireworks, made poppies out of air dried clay that were displayed in the church for Remembrance Day, were shown magic tricks by a professional magician and took part in the District Scootathon.

We were pleased to welcome Charlotte Barton who is assisting with the cubs as part of her silver Duke of Edinburgh's Award.

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Learning magic tricks Guy Fawkes night
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District Scootathon Making poppies

Explorers go for Red Flair

The explorers will be focusing on winning the County Red Flair competition in March. In previous years they have come very close to winning this gruelling night trek through the Surrey hills competing against both other explorer units and older teams from across the County. They expect to be entering two teams and we wish them the best of luck.

They will also be assisting members through their Duke of Edinburgh's Award and participating in the annual trip to Snowdonia and summer camp in the Brecon Beacons with the scouts.

Explorers support sections

A number of our explorer scouts are now regularly helping the other sections. They include Henry Pope, Alex Jackson and Jess Marais with the beavers, Alex Swain and Joel Delaney with the cubs and Megan Hill with the scouts. Former scout and explorer scout Lauren Horsford has also been assisting with the scouts when not pursuing her career as a professional golfer in exotic overseas locations.

A very serious issue

img18There have been malicious rumours circulating that the leaders never wash up on scouting trips. There is absolutely no truth in these assertions as the accompanying picture shows. I have instructed our lawyers, Sue, Grabbit and Runne, to pursue without mercy anyone perpetuating this outrageous slur on the characters of our great, faultless and universally acclaimed leaders.

(A limited number of signed copies of this extremely rare picture can be obtained from the Scout Group.)

Subs reminder

A reminder that subs are now due – £35 for the term or £95 for the year.
Our bank details for paying online are:
Account Name: 13th Wimbledon Scout Group 
Sort Code: 30-91-35 
Account Number: 03230034 
Bank Lloyds TSB Bank 
Reference – Bv/Cb/Sc Your child's name

Please remember to inform your section leader by email or text when you pay anything online.
(NB: Details for explorers are different)

Please remember to identify payments in the reference box starting with Sc for scouts, Cb for cubs and Bv for beavers. Thus subs for a beaver called Joe Smith might be recorded as BvSmithSub. This makes it much easier for the treasurer to allocate income to the right category.

And finally…

Thanks to everyone who has contributed to what might be seen as the most successful year of scouting at St Saviour's ever. A happy New Year to everyone and here's to another great year of scouting adventures!