District Hiking Weekend 2024 Results

Scouts Competition

1st Place7th Squirrels Heath Team A655 points
2nd Place3rd Upminster Team A610 points
3rd Place3rd Upminster Team C580 points
4th Place7th Squirrels Heath Team B532 points
5th Place1st Upminster 412 points
6th Place3rd Upminster Team B110 points

Explorer Competition

1st PlaceTrojans Team A1085 points
2nd PlaceVikings945 points
3rd PlaceTrojans Team B727 points
4th PlaceCenturions650 points

A remarkable achievement, A remarkable family, A remarkable man

Lancelot Rudd earned himself a prestigious medal in the Boy Scouts for saving thelife of a small child, sustaining injury to himself in the process. He had rushed in frontof a moving train, grabbed the child off the track and received an injury to his headfrom the train as a result. This was somewhat a passing story to the Rudd Familywho didn’t know the intricate details of the bravery and courage of Lancelot until afew years back. Ina Jones is a Cub (pictured as a Beaver) at the 2nd Squirrels HeathScout Group, and is pictured here with the Bronze Medal that her great greatgrandfather received over 100 years ago. Here is his story.

Ina’s grandfather, Stephen Rudd, came across a wooden picture frame containing an old looking certificate with Scouting images on it which was awarded to L, Rudd of the 2nd Leigh Troop, Bronze Medal for saving life, (Leigh On Sea, Southend). After Lance Rudd’s death in 1939, aged 43, some of his possessions were shared out amongst his four children, Stephen’s father took care of the certificate while the medal went with one of his dad’s sisters. The family later learned that she had donated the medal to the Scouting Museum in Kensington.

Although Stephen has had the certificate for nearly thirty years, he had not until very recently appreciated its true significance; they had always held the opinion that a Bronze medal, rather like an Olympic medal, would be of third-rate status behind a Silver and Gold. A few months back, the family rediscovered the certificate tucked away in a dusty corner of a spare room; the frame was in a sorry state, so Ina’s grandad decided to take it apart, give it a clean and repair the frame etc. As he had never seen the medal either, he went online to see if he could find an image and during the process he discovered that far from being third rate, the Bronze medal is actually the highest level bravery award in Scouting, rated above Silver and there being no Gold at all, at the same time he also discovered that the signature on the certificate is that of none other than Lord Baden Powell himself.

This knowledge reignited his interest, so he thought he would take a trip to the museum to go and see the medal, only to discover the Kensington museum closed its doors over twenty years ago. After a bit of digging, he found that most of the museum’s exhibits were now housed at Heritage Scouts, Gilwell Park, so he contacted them. They were very helpful in tracking down the actual medal and very kindly sent him some images across. Unfortunately, their own museum has also been closed for some time due to various funding and covid-related issues etc, so with the medal not being on display and just sitting in a storeroom, he asked if there was any way they could have it returned to the family. They weren’t very keen on the idea, but after a bit of wrangling they reluctantly agreed to release it back to the Rudd’s and in April, Ina and Stephen went to Gilwell to collect her Great Great Grandfather’s medal. They were very good to the pair and allowed them to see inside the storerooms and some of the wonderful historical scouting memorabilia they hold, including many of Baden Powell’s own personal belongings. As a result, Stephen offered to make a donation to Heritage Scouts and they in turn have agreed A remarkable achievement, A remarkable family, A remarkable man to place a dedication to Lance and his heroic deed attached to one of the Scouting pictures “A Good Turn” that hangs in the White House at Gilwell Park. In the meantime, the family have done some online research and unearthed a couple of old newspaper articles that relate to the event, including one in particular that covers the actual award ceremony which took place at the old Queens Hotel, opposite Westcliff Station.

The family’s now better understanding of the story is that: Sometime during October1909, Lance was on Scout camp somewhere in the Shoeburyness area when heand some other lads noticed a small girl on the railway track in the path of anapproaching Garrison train, Lance without hesitation scaled a fence between themand the railway, ran over and just in the nick of time, plucked the child out of the pathof the train and in doing so was himself struck by the moving train and received ablow to the head leaving him in a concussed and confused state for some time. If itwere not for Lance’s swift and courageous actions the child would almost certainlyhave been killed.

There is mention that Lance was the 1st Boy Scout to be awarded the Bronze Medal, however Stephen’s deep research suggests that his was actually the second, we think this reference might be to the fact that he was the first who held the rank of “Boy Scout” as the first ever medal was awarded to an individual with the rank of PL, which we assume stands for Patrol Leader, but it isn’t entirely clear.

Lance was born in 1896 and would have been thirteen at the time. He was still a member of the Scouts at the end of 1911 and had by then joined the 1st Brentwood Troop after the family moved to Warley at some point, soon after that in early 1912, at the age of 15yr 10mths he joined up to the Territorial Army.

Lance went on to have a distinguished career with the Army throughout the First World War rising to the rank of Sergeant, married in February 1918 while still serving, and remained with the Army even after the war in some kind of military training capacity until 1920. The Rudd family like to think that Lance’s early Scoutcraft training might have helped in some way towards pre arming him with the necessary skills to have come through that terrible time relatively unscathed.

Needless to say, the Rudd family are all very proud of Lance’s achievements during his younger life, and it was amazing that Ina and her family have been able to sharetheir Scouting history with our scout group and district. The pride, interest, and joy demonstrated by Ina, her lovely mum Sian, her grandfather Stephen, and the rest oftheir fantastic family has been inspiring to see. The story is such a wonderful reflection of bravery and courage, and the traits certainly live on within Ina – who was a fantastic Beaver, now Cub, and a true credit to our scout group, that is truly second to no other.

District Cub Camp 2023

This year’s District Cub Camp was held at Skreens Camp site in Chelmsford where 165Cubs attended with 43 leaders and young Leaders.

The weather was very good and we had to remind the Cubs to put on sun cream. All the cubs camped outside in tents.

Once everyone had arrived on Friday night and settled into their tents we had a camp fire where we all sung lots of camp songs. The Cubs had hot dogs in rolls and a drink and went to bed.

On Saturday morning we all got up and had breakfast then the activities began for the day ranging from Kayaking, Crate stacking, Climbing, paracord making, Archery, Air Rifle shooting, wheelchair assault course, raft building, slack line, bottle rockets and t shirt designing.

On Saturday evening we had dinner followed by a night of Adventure hero games which included some of these games, nerf guns, cover the number, key in the box, football in the hole and Knock down bottles using a stocking over your head.

On Sunday morning we all got up had breakfast and then we held a District Sports day with the usual activities of how far can you throw the welly boot, three-legged race, obstacle race, egg & spoon race, sack race, running race and wheel barrow race. All the cubs had lots of fun and enjoyed taking part. The Cubs who did not take part in Sports day played a game of hand ball.

A big thank you to all the leaders and the cooks team who helped make this such an exciting event for the Cubs.

Bob Wallace ADC (Events) Cubs

May 20, 2023

District Cubs Badge Day

On the 15th October we held the District Cub Badge Day at Thriftwood with 157 Cubs attending. The Cubs worked round the bases and gained 4 badges. Backwoods cooking, Air Activities 1, World Faiths, and DIY. If the Cub already held the badge, we gave them Activity Plus badges instead.

Air activities incorporated making and colouring paper aeroplanes then a competition to see how far they went. The Cubs also enjoyed the Bottle Rockets that flew up into the sky.

World faith badge was like a giant discussion on religion, Cubs drew pictures and had a quiz. We also had 2 leaders talking about their religion Hindu and Muslin. It was surprising how much you could pick up listening to these Leaders. Each Cub was also given a copy of a New Testament Gideons Bible with a Scout logo on it. (These were supplied free from Gideons).

Backwoods cooking, cooking dampers over a barbeque was very popular once cooked a dob of jam on them kept the cubs very interested in eating them. They also cooked eggs in a plastic bag. Lighting fires with spark sticks was also enjoyed.

DIY base the Cubs made Pin Pong ball guns. This involved drilling with a bench drill. Drilling with a battery drill. Screwing in 3 screws with a screwdriver.  Hammering cable clips in to hold the elastic band. Once done they then had to colour their guns with wood dye.  I would like to thank Barton Timber who supplied the timber for the guns free of charge.

By the number of what’s App messages I have received all the Cubs had a super, enjoyable day.

Thank You to all the Leaders and Parents who helped run this day and to make it such a success.

Bob Wallace
ADC CUBS (Events)

October 15, 2022

2nd Squirrels Heath Beavers Harry Potter Sleepover

Our Beavers fun weekend at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry began with them being sorted into their Houses by the talking Sorting Hat! They then had their ID photos taken for identification purposes. This fun was followed by their first wizarding class where they designed their magic wands!

The Beavers then enjoyed the first Harry Potter film – The Philosopher’s Stone, with some pizza and cake! We had some very excitable witches and wizards on our hands at bedtime, however they all got to sleep eventually and woke up in the morning bright and early for their fun Hogwarts classes and activities. Before this, they dined in the Great Hall for Breakfast.

The Beavers then played Traffic Lights with a Harry Potter twist, designed their own witches spell, watched Hagrid’s special potion class, pinned the scar on Harry Potter’s head, and played quidditch in their houses! What a fantastic sleepover, we had some very well behaved Beavers stay at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Pleased to say that they all graduated with flying colours. The winning House was Slytherin, congratulations to all in Slytherin!

They seemed to thoroughly enjoy themselves and we did too; this is what Beavers is all about – fun and adventure! They have been told not to practice any magic at home and away from Hogwarts, we hope that they listen…

Charlie Lovegrove

Hornchurch District – New District Commissioner

It is with great pleasure that I can announce that David Wright has been appointed as District Commissioner for Hornchurch. David’s appointment will formally commence from the District AGM on 19th September 2022 (this is change of date for the Hornchurch AGM), however he will be District Commissioner designate from 25th July 2022, when he will meet with Group Scout Leaders and the District Team at their summer social meeting. David will use the time between the two events to meet with members of the team and potential new appointments, so that he is a position to prepare for his nominations to the District Executive at the AGM.

David brings with him a wealth of experience from both his professional management & legal experience and voluntary background. David has been a key member of 1st Squirrels Heath Scout Group for the last 20 years. He has led both the Scout Troop and the Viking Explorer Scout Unit and has been a driving force behind ensuring young people get to shape their own programme and leading countless outdoor adventures.

David said about his appointment “I am honoured to have been selected for the role of District Commissioner for Hornchurch. My family have lived in Hornchurch for over 60 years, and I have been an active Scout since joining Beavers in the late 80’s. My plan for Hornchurch District is to build on the great successes and to continue to grow, become more inclusive, be shaped by young people and to make a bigger impact in our community.”

Louisa Golder, District Chair, said “On behalf of the District I would like to congratulate David on his appointment. We as a District look forward to working with him and hearing his vision for how he would like to move the District forward.”

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Dean Jefferys for holding the fort and overseeing the running of the District during this time. Dean has kindly agreed to continue with this current arrangement until David formally starts at the AGM on 19th September.

I hope that you will all give David your full support as he takes on the role of District Commissioner for Hornchurch and continues to grow and develop the District.

Best wishes

Lee Clark
County Commissioner
Greater London North East

June 1, 2022

2nd Squirrels Heath Beavers – Platinum Jubilee Celebrations!

On the 28th of May, 2nd Squirrels Heath Beavers held their Platinum Jubilee Event with Radfield Home Care Havering. Our amazing Beavers and their families got to meet the lovely Radfield clients and their families. It was filled with laughter, fun, happiness, relationship building and pure joy.

At Christmas, last year, our Beavers donated kind gifts and wrote lovely Christmas cards out for the Radfield clients, so it was amazing that they got to be introduced to each other face to face. They got to speak to each other, share stories together, talk about their interests, and build up lovely friendships. The Beavers treated the lovely clients to a rendition of the National Anthem twice and also, one of our Beavers played the National Anthem on the keyboard to perfection.

Just recently, our colony has signed up to become Dementia Friends and this project is so important for not only raising awareness for Dementia, but also the loneliness that elderly people face on a day-to-day basis. This event allowed the lovely Radfield clients to build connections with the Beavers, and reduce any feelings of loneliness. The bonds created, memories made, and smiles all round, for all that attended, is so important to reflect upon and remember.

Thank you to all who made it possible and to all those who attended. Please enjoy looking at the lovely pictures, which are a mere snapshot of the amazing event! 

Charlie Lovegrove

Hornchurch District Scout Patrol Leader Training Weekend

Over the weekend of 13th – 15th May 2022. Twenty six Scouts from seven different groups across the district, assembled at Warren lodge for this year’s patrol leader training camp. The aim of the weekend being the acquiring of the Team Leader challenge award.

The scouts were divided into six mixed teams, each identified by a colour. Saturday morning saw the teams taking part in site layout assessment, kit lists, team communication game and a very involved camp planning session. This involves everything from site selection to menu planning, activity planning, plus transport arranging, and costing.

After a well- earned break it was time for the teams to attend six leader lead bases. First Aid, Lashings, Axe work, Bearings, Stoves and Fire lighting were on offer.

With orienteering, more compass work, another type of communication active session and Guy building following on after lunch. In case you’re wondering about guy building in the middle of May. They became our casualties for a pioneering rescue activity later on. Also, of course, they burn well after use. (Always popular).

Many more items were covered from their work folders. Rachel Taylor (DESC) ran a session on the pyramid of scouting followed by information about moving on to explorers.

The last session on Sunday morning, just as the rain made its first appearance in an otherwise gloriously sunny weekend, saw the scouts involved in the ever popular fire on the lake activity. A nice challenge to round of a morning of listening to me rattling through things. Congratulations to all the scouts that took part in the course and gained their award.

And saving a very important thank you to last. A massive thanks to the leaders on site. Gerry Merritt, Lyn Merritt, ( most appreciated for all the cooking), John Reed, Dean Claxton, Dean Holden, Andy Rice, Glenn Daniels, and Rachel Taylor. Also thanks to Lisa for keeping me sane with all the money comings and goings. Without these good people the whole thing could not have run at all. 

Grand Job

District Leader

May 21, 2022

District Cub Camp 2022

138 cubs from11 groups, 9 young leaders and 34 leaders, with visits from Dean Jeffries and Linda Thorogood.

District camp 2022 was really GREAT! 

It all kicked off with a good old sing song around the campfire then bed though not much sleep!

Saturday – up, fed and watered then straight onto activities and bases galore including kayaking, rafting, air rifles, archery, climbing, crate stacking, cave bus, wheelchairs, bottle rockets, slack-line, lava floor, paracord keyrings, knotting, balistas, treasure hunt and bunting for our Jubilee fair in the evening… sooo much fun! And the food….scrummy especially the bacon rolls, thanks to Stuart and his team.  The cubs all had great fun making new friends, sleeping in tents, lots for them for the first time, and enjoyed EVERYTHING!

District Leader

May 13, 2022

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