Southampton City Scouts News

In My View

Posted on Tuesday, April 17th, 2012

SCOUTING in Southampton has never been better – lots of young people and loads of adults are having great fun every week.

Membership increased by three per cent in Hampshire with a seven-percent increase in the Explorer units, 14 to 18-year-olds, and more girls joined Scouting last year than boys.

Why is-that? It is because Scouting offers today’s Scouts an opportunity to prepare for the job market by working for a range of skills-based badges?

Traditionally in Scouting we were renowned for being able to tie a variety of knots, read maps and light camp fires effectively.

But the modern day Scout is now focusing on skills that can lead to a modern day job. The trend towards more jobs-based badges is attracting growing numbers of savvy girls many of whom want to boost their CVs for college and university applications.

Each year our leaders and young people canoe, climb, sleep in shelters, camp, cook, build and burn things kayak, sail, play games and above all, have fun!

Our younger sections for the Beavers, six to eight-years-old, and Cubs, eight to 11-years-old, and Scouts,11 to 14-years-old, we offer them great fun, a wide range of challenge badges and awards and Scouting is a super way to make very good friends, which are very helpful when at school and colleges and later in life.

But we need more adults to join the adventure to help get the young people of Southampton outside, having fun and developing away from home and the classroom. We are looking for Leaders, people to help with maintenance, administration, activity instructors, anything! Previous experience is optional, having fun is compulsory!

Forty-five percent of our adults come from parents of our young people who give us a hand but the majority of volunteers are people just wanting to offer something to their community and what could be better than investing your time in the young.
Why don’t you help a group near you for as much time or as little as you like?

To find out more visit our website

Six A Side

Posted on Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

This year we had 8 teams reported ready to take part, this produced the ideal situation with 2 leagues of four. Network provided 2 referees and 2 Leaders also volunteered so we had a very efficient league playing schedule and were able to complete the league matches soon after 11. 

As time was on our side we were able to run a ‘Plate’ competition for the losing teams that hadn’t finished in the top two of their league. This was won by the 13th,”the best of the rest” as one the parents put it..

The final results of the two leagues produced semi-finals between the 14th and 2nd and 29th and 22nd.  The first semi final was won by the 14th with the 22nd winning the second semi final.  This made the final between 14th and 22nd, a repeat of the last two years final, with the 14th winning. Third place saw the 2nd taking on the 29th with the 29th coming out as the winners to take 3rd place.

Special thanks to the referees and Leaders for their help and support, also congratulations to all who took part in this event.

Graham Meering.

Fly On The Wall

Posted on Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

I had quite a bit to do with the change in the old West District where we decided to have several Units for Explorers and to try to establish our own Network Unit (this was against the initial recommendation for an informal County setup).

The Network Unit took the name of “Duck” and, despite this, has flourished adding a body of older Scouts continuing with their Scouting and supporting the District. A number of the Duck Unit went on to achieve the Queen’s Scout Award.

In 2003 Ian Rutherford, Rob Greenaway and myself took a small party of Explorers to camp at Coniston. Amongst them were Naomi Kench, Jason Ledwich and Neil (Bob) Boulter. Last week Ian, Rob and I were at the 11th HQ watching them receive the Queen’s Scout Award from the County Commissioner. What a splendid way to commemorate 10 years of Explorer Scouting and Network. Congratulations to them and to Fran who also received the award.

mini-144-4469_IMG.JPGConiston 2003 – Jason, Naomi, Bob, 2nd 3rd and 4th from left.

Footnote: they all had an impressive range of achievements to gain the award but I must mention Bob. For his Physical activity he ran the “Marathon du Sable”, 150 miles in 5 days across the Sahara Desert. He also spent 6 months in New Zealand walking in the mountainous South Island. I am amazed.


From The DC

Posted on Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

Adult Leadership Training

Well done to Nico Chart & Sam Chapman who have made a great start to improving the training arrangements in our District. They held a training Validation Breakfast to kick start our new approach to the training of our Leaders. This was a great success.

We now have eighteen Training Advisers helping fifty seven of our adult Leaders proceed through the various modules to complete their Wood Beads training. This is a far better approach to training and I would like to thank all the new TA’s who have kindly stepped forward to join the district training team that is greatly appreciated.

On a personal note I am pleased to say I have completed the additional five modules required for a DC and Adam Jollans the CC has awarded me my wood Beads certificate. So I am leading by example!! Please crack on with that training and validation it is easy.

Adult Appointments and Reviews

I have carried out some reviews of a number of Leaders in our District Team and I will be completing this task over the next few weeks.
Some GSL’s have been asked to do reviews of some Leaders in their Groups as some of them are well overdue. All those being reviewed must have completed the Safe Guarding and First Response Training or the review cannot be approved. The review process should be concluded by the 15th April 2012 so if you’re a GSL and not done the reviews yet you only have a few weeks left.
So everyone understands why we do reviews, the reasoning behind all reviews is that it is a really good opportunity to celebrate what we have done well and to check everyone is happy and find out if they would like to do more?
We have a lot of good people involved in our District who may want to go up a role but that maybe only possible if they go to another Group. It is also a really good opportunity to deal with some of the silly misunderstanding and issues that happen in our Groups.

Scout Group HQ Leases

We have held another meeting with the City Council and our fellow Southampton Scout Districts to agree a generic Scout HQ lease which will offer us some long term commitment to Scouting in recognition for what we offer the cities young people. Once those leases are concluded we will be presenting them to Groups and asking for each Group’s approval.

Group RAG review

I and Veronica Radford the District Chair have now met with three Groups to help them establish their Group Development Plans. This is a great way of looking at what works well in your Group and forward planning how we could develop and improve our Scouting. Those Groups that have not come back to me with an appointment for us to meet with you please do so. We would like to meet with all the Groups before the District AGM at the end of June.

St George’s Day Parade Sunday 22nd April 2012

This Parade is being organised this year by Itchen North but I am pleased to say Chris Davis our District Chaplain is carrying out the service. Further details will be sent out after Easter.

District Camp 4th to 7th May 2012

The organisation for the camp is going well and a further meeting to set up to make the final arrangements on Monday 16th April 2012.

I hope that every Group have their individual activities well organised. I am really looking forward to us spending the weekend together.

If you have any concerns or queries about the camp please speak to Mike Jackson and George Longhurst who I am sure will be able to help you.

District Website

The web site is proving to be well used and it is meeting its main objective which was to SHOUT LOUD HOW GOOD WE ARE.

A lot of work has taken place to get it to this stage but we would welcome some positive feedback on how the site could be further developed. We are looking for each Group to use their own Group page as a good way of promoting themselves to the Community.

You should have all now signed into the members area if not please do so then you can be better informed and have a copy of the District Calendar and Directory. If you have forgotten your password to the members area please use the reset an e-mail password option at the bottom of the sign in page. At this moment we have 98 members signed up.

The web site has delivered us several enquiries from adults wishing to join us in Southampton City Scouting.

Eastleigh District Scout Shop

Mike Clements of the Eastleigh District Scout Shop in Albrook has contacted me to say he has written to every Group, Explorers and Young Leaders and given them a credit note. He tells me that some of the Groups last year did not claim the free badges that were being offered. Please use your credit note this year, you don’t often get something for nothing do you!!

Adventurous Activities

Please note that any enquiries regarding permits are being dealt with by Lee Budd. Please contact him if you need any help.

Diamond Jubilee Celebrations

Hampshire Scouting are holding a parade at Winchester Cathedral in the evening of Friday 15th June and I would like to take three representatives from each Group and representatives from Explorers,Young Leaders and Active Support to the event with a sufficient team of Leaders to supervise them. The District Executive Committee has agreed that they will fund the cost of a coach to transport us to and from Winchester. We may also use a mini bus if the coach is found to be insufficient which I hope will be the case. Further information will be sent out nearer the time.

I would remind everyone that Scouting and Guiding are encouraged to join forces to organise an activity to benefit the community. Please start to think how you will do this. If you want to make contact with your local Guide Unit but are not sure how to do that please speak to me and I will direct you to a nearby Guide Unit.

Sports Events

Unfortunately the Cross Country event had to be postponed due to the weather being terrible. I hope that this can be rearranged asap. As for the Cub and Scout Six a side football that was held. The Scout section was won by the 14th and the Cubs by the 22nd. Well done to everyone who participated. The 22nd Cubs went on to represent the District at the County competition and did themselves proud.


After much deliberation we have decided to continue to use the main route into the site but are looking to improve the signage to the car park, the main car park gate and the road to our Camp site. This will hopefully mean that less people will get lost, especially when it is dark and they are visiting the site for the first time.
We have received £2,000 of grant funding to set us on the road to provide electricity at the site. That fund raising campaign continues.

Bookings are still taken by Peter Hull.  Richard Cook is now dealing with invoices and payments. This shared approach is far easier to manage. All availability of the Camp site is on the District web site Wilverley booking calendar. So take a look and book yourself a event at your District Camp site.

We are holding two Wilverley Maintenance Days this year, 14th July and 29th September. I would ask each and every Group to come along and help us keep the site to a good standard. Please put those dates in your diaries and promote it amongst everyone in your Groups.

Win Your Group A Free Weekend At Wilverley

Your District camp site needs a new camp site badge and we thought it would be really good to challenge every Group to design this for us.

The winning group will have a free weekend at Wilverley as a thank you.

The badge should be all about the building and the forest and nature and promotes Scouting.

Please send your entries to Colin Floyd by the 1st May 2012.

I have attended most District events and have been to the following events not mentioned above.

PL Training Weekend at Wilverley

Many thanks to Stuart and all the Scout Leaders for a really good training weekend. I called by on the Saturday and they were having a great time. We were talking about how scout groups involve the young people in the decision making of the programme and clearly we could improve on that. Watch this space!!

County Youth Council Dinner at Ferny Crofts

I spent a very pleasant evening having dinner with the County Youth Council, We were talking over dinner about how Districts are being encouraged to get far more youth involvement in all areas of our Scouting. This is something that is long overdue and will be a focus for me over the coming few months.

Recruitment Day at Southampton University

Graham Meering and I spent the day at the University trying to recruit the young students to get involved in Scouting. We have very strong links with the University and we are looking for other similar partner organisations. If you work for big organisations could you forward us some contact details of key people that we could approach.

Meeting with the 1st and the local Guide Company

We met with the local Guide companies to arrange a joint community activity between the Guides and the 1st Scout Group. Thanks for to Eve for arranging this. It would be great if you all arranged something on similar lines.

Please don’t forget if you need to speak to me with anything your concerned about just give me a call and I am sure I can help you. Please feel free to contact me through e-mail.