Gillwell 24

Posted on Saturday, July 21st, 2012

Saturday morning 0900 hrs and the start of the 24 hours of activities. On offer was a wide variety of activities – zorbing, shooting, mountain boarding, AA driving school, scuba diving, trapeze, bushcraft, wood work, fun fair, power kites, internet café, radio station, disco, climbing, cinema, information tents to name some.  Being the ten year anniversary of Explorers, chocolate cake was on offer at the opening ceremony where the latest Scout ambassador was revealed – Ed Stafford. For those who don’t know who this is, this is the chap who walked the length of the Amazon http://www.walkingtheamazon.com/

This year the weather was not really in our favour. The Gilwell site was already a bit of a mud bath on arrival. This steadily got worse as the weekend went on. The rain came and went and then really started in the early hours of Sunday morning resulting in a flooded campsite with many tents under water. 0500 hrs found the leaders up and serving bacon and sausage rolls to not only our own Explorers but also a group from Reigate whose site was completely flooded out and under a couple of feet of water.  The benefits of networking and establishing links around the Scout family. Their leader, Tom, was a former leader in Southampton during his University days. Draw parallels with Glastonbury and IOW.

So 0900 hrs Sunday morning the event closed and we all headed home, very wet, very muddy and very tired. Certainly a weekend to be remembered and, despite the rain and the mud, one that the Explorers really enjoyed.  Next year is already in the diary.

Dave McKeeman

ESL Enterprise