Cub Camp, Beaver Sleepover and Disappointment!

This coming weekend our Cubs are off to camp with another local Pack from our old District. We’ve been doing a joint camp with them for quite a few years now and it’s always an enjoyable weekend and the Cubs make new friends and renew old friendships. As the camp is always close to Guy Fawkes Night we have fireworks on the Saturday night as an end to the Campfire.

As well as the Cubs camping the Beavers are doing the first sleepover the Colony has done. The Beavers have done sleepovers with the District before, but this is the first time we’ve done one! Judging by the programme the Beaver Leaders have come up with, the Beavers are going to have a great time!

The problem with all this for me personally is that I won’t be there Crying. With the way the date of the camp has fallen with the school holidays, we’re off for a week away – the last one before our daughter is born in fact! So I’m disappointed that I’ll miss what promises to be a great weekend for the Beavers and Cubs, but I am told lots of photos will be taken (they better had be!) and I know we’ll have a good holiday.

Some Reflections on Podcasting

It’s nearly a year since I produced my first podcast and since then I’ve produced another 19. A few thoughts so far.

As I reflect on the podcasts I’ve done so far, I know that the quality has been variable! Not just the actual audio quality, which has improved as I’ve got a better microphone and have a better idea of editing  etc, but also the content. But I’d like to think it’s improved as time has gone on.

One thing I’ve learned is that it’s better to write out a full script of what I’m going to say beforehand and not to ad lib too much. Recording a podcast just off the top of my head doesn’t work and I end up editing out about half of the recorded content! However, when everything is written down on 3 – 4 sides of paper, it feels like I have a lot to say, but it works out at around only ten minutes. That seems a long time to talk, but not much when listening. Perhaps 15 – 20 minutes would be better. But it makes a better podcast to be interesting, relevant and short than for one full of waffle and long!

The other thing I’ve found is that I tend to put them out in fits and starts. This is down to available time and thinking of something potentially interesting to say! The latter is the more difficult to arrange!

The last two podcasts where I chatted with Shawn Cleary (I won’t go so far as to say ‘interviewed’ as that sounds far too grand), have worked well and given a couple of interesting podcasts.

I’d like to do some more podcasts with guests in the future and I’m always interested in hearing what people think of what I’m putting out and if there’s anything you want to hear about.

A Conversation with Shawn Cleary – part 2 (Podcast)

Podcast number 19. This is part two of the conversation I had with Shawn Cleary from the True North Scouting blog and podcast. This time we talk about camp fire, songs & skits, Scouting both internationally and locally and the enthusiasm of the Scouts.

Don’t forget this is podcast is available on iTunes as well!

Once again, many thanks to Shawn for coming on and chatting to me.

Please feel free to leave any feedback.

Leaders ‘Sacked’ For Not Following the Rules!

This kind of relates back to a post I made in July about Leaders refusing to accept girls in their Group.

Well, it now seems that a different Group has been refusing to accept girls (despite having to since 1st January 2007) and that their District has removed them form their roles. See this newspaper article (which does seem to be slightly biased towards the Leaders). And quite rightly so! The ruling that Groups must accept girls is now nearly two years old and if they don’t approve, well tough luck! What example is it setting to the members of the Group if their Leaders cannot follow the Scout Association’s rules?

Now from reading the article, two things strike me. First how was the District able to replace all the Leaders in one go (I’m very impressed about that!) and second why did the Leaders feel the need to go to a national newspaper to moan about an organisation they obviously enjoy being in and have spent so much time and effort doing stuff for? The sacked Leaders talk about getting the rules changed back to being boy only, but there is no chance of this happening, once this decision was taken there is no going back

The thing to bear in mind is that if you don’t follow the rules of the organisation you are associated with, be it work or a voluntary organisation, you will get sacked (unless you are an MP of course!).

It sad to see nine experienced Leaders being removed from their roles, but if they are so eager to break the Scout Association’s rules and set a bad example to their Scouts, then it is the correct decision.

A Conversation with Shawn Cleary – part 1 (Podcast)

144x144tn Podcast number 18. As promised last time, I’ve done something a little different – I have a guest! Shawn Cleary from the True North Scouting blog and podcast was good enough to join me for a chat on Sunday afternoon / morning (depending on your time zone!).

We talk about his new Troop, knives, the media and fires.

If you haven’t already read or listened to Shawn’s stuff, I’d highly recommend you pop by his site.

Please feel free to leave any feedback – you never know, it may even be possible to do so on iTunes as well!

Part 2 soon – enjoy.

Scout’s TV

One of the items in the weekly newsletter I get from the Scout Association was that the SA’s YouTube channel has been launched as Scout’s TV. Here are all the SA’s videos including the six episodes of the Everyday Adventure TV series.



This was shown on TV over the summer, but as it was on at slightly odd times on a lesser known channel, I kept forgetting about it! However, as they’re all here I can watch at my own leisure!

Go and take a look and see what the SA is getting up to.

Waiting Lists

Sorry, Joining Lists as we now call them!

Just recently, I’ve had a handful of people get in touch with the Group, through our website, with regards to getting their children to join Beavers, Cubs or Scouts. The problem is that I’ve had to put their names on the waiting (joining Eye-rolling) list.

Now the reason for this is not because of lack of Leaders, for example. It’s more a case that we’ve been a victim of our own success! We have enough Leaders to accept more young people in the sections, it’s just that we don’t actually have the physical room in the Hall for more kids! This is kind of a nice situation to be in as it proves we must be doing something right, but it’s also an awful situation to be in as well. I really hate the fact that I am, in effect, turning people away. I do give them them option to have the details of other local Groups, but none seem to take me up on the offer. The only other option would be to start a second Colony, Pack or Troop, but that would bring with a whole raft of other issues!


The Scouts have always had a strong visual brand, whether it is –

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The last logo represents the latest update from around 2001. Now the brand is being updated again. However, it’s not a huge change this time but more of a ‘tweak’! See the guide here.

However, from next year the SA are launching a Brand Centre which will contain all the stuff needed to promote a constant visual identity. This will be available to everyone form the Groups up to the national level.

I must admit, I’m looking forward to getting my hands on this stuff and having a play!

The Missing Photograph’s Companion

Back in May I talked about trying to find an old photo that was taken of the Troop in January 1926 (as I now know). We had a vague photo of it and that was all.


It was taken to be presented to the Church’s Vicar, Fr. Nash, who was moving to a new post in Devon. I guess he got a copy and the Church kept one as well. At the same time a photo of the Church’s Guides was also taken and now this photo has turned up! It was found down the back of a cupboard in Church.

However it has not stood the test of time too well.

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As you can see part has been torn away and it is quite dirty. Fr. Nash is just about visible in the middle and I’m guessing the lady beside him is his wife.

I wonder if there are still other copies in existence. It would be great (but highly unlikely) if the negatives could be found!

A Quick Update (Podcast)

Podcast number 17. A quick update of what my Group has been up to in September. I will doing another podcast within the next 10 –14 which will be somewhat different, so watch this space.

I actually recorded this on Monday, uploaded it and forgot it was saved as a draft, hence the delay in posting! Must remember to switch the brain on occasionally…… 😉