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What is Scouting?

Scouting is an international, uniformed, youth movement. It is divided into several main sections

Beaver Scouts 6-8 years old
Cub Scouts 8-10 years old
Scouts 10-14 years old
Explorer Scouts 14-18 years old
Network 18-25 years old

The aims of Scouting are clearly stated but can be basically surmised as providing an opportunity for young people to develop, to learn and to enjoy themselves. Scouting can offer a wide range of skills and services and is open to any young person of any creed colour, religion, mental or physical capabilities and of any sex.

All scouting sections rely upon a progressive 'training' scheme in the form of badges to track the progress of the scouts and to give a feeling of achievement. There are two main types of badges, The 'Award' badges and the 'Activities' badges. They vary from section to section. The Award badges are designed to provide the basic set of activities and training to be completed. These cover the basics of all types of work, and the important necessary Scouting skills. The Activity badges provide the option to take a certain activity or hobby in greater detail.

Scouting is not just about schemes, awards and badges. The games and adventurous activities are very important to Scouting, not just because they are enjoyable, but because they are also important in the young persons development.

History and Traditions of Scouting

Lord Baden-Powell and the birth of Scouting.

Scouting remains loyal to the Principles that were developed by our Founder Robert Baden-Powell

Lord Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell
Born: London, England, 22 February 1857
Died: Nyeri, Kenya, 8 January 1941

The Young Baden-Powell

As a boy, Baden-Powell enjoyed the outdoor life and often went fishing, boating and camping. After attending Rose Hill School in Tunbridge Wells, he gained a scholarship to Chaterhouse School in Godalming in Surrey. Although he was a talented artist, he was not very keen on schoolwork. However, he did pass the necessary exams to become a young Cavalry Officer in the British Army and saw service at home and in India, Afghanistan and Africa.

The Siege Of Mafeking

It was in South Africa, between 1899 and 1900 during the Boer war, that Baden-Powell found himself in charge of a small number of soldiers who were charged with defending a town called Mafeking against a much larger number of Boer troops.

During the siege, many people back home in Britain came to hear stories of Baden-Powell's bravery and ideas, When he returned, he was welcomed as a hero.

Aids to Scouting

Just before the siege of Mafeking, Baden-Powell wrote a book called Aids to Scouting. In it he described the training that he used in the Army. Unexpectedly many boys bought the book and enjoyed trying the activities in it for themselves.

Brownsea Island

Following the success of Aids to Scouting, Baden-Powell organised a camp on Brownsea Island in Poole Harbour, Dorset in 1907. Here, he tried all types of activities for the boys, including games, sports, swimming, boating, exploring, fire lighting and camping.

Scouting for Boys

Baden-Powell collected together the ideas that he used at this camp in a book called Scouting for Boys. The book was published in six fortnightly parts. It proved to be a great success and soon boys all over Britain were organising themselves into groups of 'Boy Scouts'. The first official Scout Camp was held at Humshaugh, Northumberland in 1908.

Wolf Cubs

In 1914 there was an experimental scheme for Wolf Cubs or Young Scouts as they were sometimes called. In 1916 the wolf cubs Handbook was published. On 16 December 1916 Wolf Cubs was officially formed.

Girl Guides

In 1910 Baden-Powell started Girl Guides. This was originally run by his sister Agnes and then later by his wife Olave Soames.


An early part of the Scouting phenomenon saw huge gatherings of Scouts from around the world. These Jamborees - as Baden-Powell named them - were intended to promote the international understanding and world peace, and to give an opportunity for Scouts to exchange ideas and make new friends. The first Jamboree was held at Olympia in London in 1920.

That same year Baden-Powell was made Chief Scout of the World. In 1929 Baden-Powell was made a Lord. He died at his home in Hyeri, Kenya in 1941 at the age of 83. He was buried at the foot of Mount Kenya. There is a memorial tablet to him in Westminster Abbey.
46th Preston scout group sections meet at the Community Centre at Sacred Heart Church.
Though we are associated with the Church and attend Church Parade every second Sunday of the month, church attendance is NOT a condition of membership of the Scouting Organisation.

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