All posts by Michael.Dreksler

May Camp at Hammerwood

The scout troops spend the weekend camping at Hammerwood Scout Camp, on the edge of the Ashdown Forest near East Grinstead.

It was a back-to-basics camp with the scouts cooking all their own meals over wood fires.

Menu for the weekend was

  • Hotdogs & hot chocolate for supper after pitching camp
  • Cooked breakfast of eggs, bacon, sausage, mushrooms and toast
  • Tea/coffee/squash, fruit or a biscuit for for mid morning snack
  • Do-it-yourself wraps for lunch + fruit tart
  • Tea/coffee/squash, fruit or a biscuit for mid afternoon snack
  • Chicken and vegetable curry and rice for dinner followed by sponge puddings and custard
  • Hot chocolate for supper
  • Choice of eggy bread / omelette and cereal for breakfast
  • For end-of-striking camp snack the scouts made Smores using enormous (‘EPIC Huge’) marshmallows

The scouts managed a good number of activities into the weekend when they weren’t cooking.

  • The brushed up their archery skills
  • They set tracking trails for the other teams to follow
  • They all had chance to perfect their axe and saw skills
  • They tried their hand at whittling – either tent pegs or cutlery
  • They also managed to play quite a few wide games – without injuries!

Apprentice Flavour Maker

The Scouts from both troops have been trying their hands at Sales, Marketing and Product Development…

They took part in an Apprentice-style challenge to design a new flavour of crisps, to develop it, and market it to the rest of the troop.

Finally, Sir Jason and Sir Emily Sugar made their final pronouncements and decided on winners.

We are not sure that we have found the Next Big Thing, but we did come to the conclusion that cinnamon flavoured crisps aren’t as unpleasant as they sound, and hot-chocolate powder doesn’t go with anything, and definitely not Cajun seasoning…

(Click any photo to open a bigger version that you can scroll through)

Sir Emily Sugar announcing her decision

Should you want to try this with your troop, it was based on this OSM activity

Scouts went chariot racing this week

On Tuesday Chapman prepared some of our new pioneering poles before using them to build some basic chariots and racing them.

The first step was stripping the bark off the new poles.

They then got to building their chariots and racing them. Unfortunately everything happened so fast we were distracted from photography and missed that bit!

I did get a picture of the poles in the daylight though

Not to be out-done, Swift tried their hand on Friday. This time we managed to get some shots of the race too!

Scouts Christmas Camp at Waylands

Both scout troops have been away on Christmas Camp, which was held at Waylands Scout Camp nr South Street.

Spit roast turkey at Christmas Camp + scouts

We tried out two battery powered spit-roasts which we fitted to our altar fires for the first time.  We gave them a work out with Turkey for the Christmas dinner on Saturday and roast pork in a bun on Sunday.

Apart from eating we managed to fit in some seasonal activities

  • Mug pong
  • Treasure hunt
  • Rope swing making
  • Reindeer making
  • Christmas tree making
  • Woggle making
  • Christmas Carol-fire
  • Mini pantomimes
  • Christmas Quiz
  • Silent disco
  • Secret Santa

We also managed to invest two new scouts! but we forgot to take photos

Spring Programmes 2016 [Updated 3x]

For parents of young people in all sections…

Remember there are also the following whole group events

  • Saturday 9th January – Volunteer Day from 09:30 Bonfire to clear up after the tree surgeons.
  • Sunday 24th April – St George’s Day Parade through the town centre and celebration service for all young people (afternoon)

Continue reading Spring Programmes 2016 [Updated 3x]

Happy Christmas from Christmas Camp

The scouts held their Christmas Camp at Frylands Wood Scout Outdoor Centre on the outskirts of Croydon.

After we arrived at Frylands, found our accommodation and put the Christmas decorations up, the scouts went out for a wide game before hot-dogs and bed.  True to form, they all were far too excited to sleep quickly and ended up getting to sleep late.

However, next morning we were surprised to find team on breakfast duty up half an hour early!


Our morning’s activities were traversing where we also managed to invest our newest scouts Olga and Henry

Our next activity was exploring the Frylands tunnel system and playing a few games including hunt-the-leader.  One of the visiting leader’s from another group, Ellie, proved to be a star and avoided detection completely.

Our morning session finished with a new activity for us, “earth-ball”.  The game was a hit and it is definitely something we would look to acquire for the group at some point.

The afternoon session was run by Richard Chipperfield and the Kent County Space Team.  The scouts learned how to carefully construct a rocket, before going out to the field to fly them.  They started with a low-power ‘A’ rocket engine, and built up to the most powerful ‘C’ engine.  The B and C engines went a lot further, and only one rocket survived the whole afternoon session intact and in our possession!  A huge thank-you to Richard and his team for giving up their afternoon for us.

By the end of the rocket session everyone was getting a bit chilly, so we retired for a hot chocolate before attacking the veg prep for dinner.  It wasn’t long before the scouts were outside again playing Laser Tag, working up an appetite before dinner.

An enormous Christmas dinner (the works: turkey, roasties, sprouts, carrots, beans, peas, parsnips, cranberry sauce and gravy, followed by Christmas pudding – a first for many of the scouts) was followed by the inevitable washing-up marathon (well done Team C).


By 19:30 we were outside, passed a pair of Swedish candles (first time we had tried them) for the Christmas Carol-fire and Donald’s investiture as a group sectional assistant

The scouts slept a lot more soundly and for substantially longer, so much so that breakfast was half an hour late on Sunday.

After we had packed and cleaned, our Sunday activities were indoor archery, and ‘team challenges’. The team challenges consisted of games of minefield (the team had to navigate across a minefield, learning from their colleague’s untimely deaths to reach safety), towers of hanoi and crossing spider’s web.  Theo and Anthony tried the unorthadox approach of throwing themselves horizontally through the spider’s web.  They both had a greater respect for movie stunt-people afterwards!

After a lunch of turkey sandwiches, we finished the camp with few parachute games before heading home to say goodbye to another year of scouting!

For all the photos (good and bad) see the event photos on our flickr album Flickr_Faenza

IMG_20151220_100717 (feature image)