What’s been happening?

I’ve survived two terms! A Beaver Leaders thoughts.

By Kerry Singleton, Assistant Beaver Scout Leader, 1st Lyndhurst

I relocated to the UK in July and found myself, in September, as the leader of 1st Lyndhurst Beavers. There was a lot to learn and I threw myself right in to leading this fantastic colony. Navigating the weather has been hilarious, as I am definitely a fair-weather person but I’ve invested in wellies and waterproofs and I’m definitely keeping to the motto of Be Prepared!

Our first two terms have consisted of so many different experiences for our Beavers that I have had to look back over planning documents and photos to remind myself of how much they achieved. We loved the Soapbox racing and it gave me a real taste of what scouting in the New Forest is all about. I could not have felt more welcomed by everyone, and the camaraderie on the day (with a touch of competitiveness!) was reassuring and refreshing.

We did fire lighting in the rain, which was somewhat challenging but our Beavers carried on regardless! We visited the church for an evening with Reverend David to learn about Remembrance Sunday. We made a scarecrow for the Scarecrow Trail (an English tradition that was new to me!). All in all, it was a successful first term and it was a pleasure getting to know every member of our colony.

In the winter term, as I felt more settled, we expanded our colony to 14 and planned an exciting and varied programme. We became mad scientists with the help of our fabulous Young Leaders, William and Cassie. We did Air Activities and celebrated Chinese New Year with some questionable cooking! We learnt camping skills in preparation for the fabulous overnight camp at Calshot. Our night hike turned into a dusk hike, as I had not changed clocks for 14 years (it doesn’t happen in the UAE) and had forgotten about the changes in time! I invested 7 new Beavers too.

I have survived the first two terms and have enjoyed every minute! I have attended several meetings and cannot get over the enthusiasm of all the amazing volunteers. The time spent by everyone, ensuring that Scouting is a positive experience for every member, is astounding. The support I have received from everyone is incredible and that is why I have written this short article. Whilst I still bombard Julie with loads of questions, she always helps me out and answers my queries, regardless of how small they might be. All the leaders are there to help me, whenever I ask for support or just for the location of the glue sticks! As a newbie to the area, I am a fresh set of eyes and, if you have been involved in scouting here for a long time, you might not realise how incredible this district is.

Therefore, this is a massive shout out and thank you to all the leaders, beavers and parents who have supported me in these first two terms and who have laughed with me on many occasions! I’ve still got a lot of learning to do but it’s great fun and I’m loving it!

Thanks Kerry, it’s really great to hear about the experiences of a new leader and it sounds like you are doing a fab job! Welcome to the District. (Team DC)

Sandleheath News.

By Martine Coatham, Group Scout Leader 1st Sandleheath Sea Scouts

Sandleheath Scouts and Explorers are pleased to be back on the water after the Easter break – the first couple of weeks have been wet and windy but still great fun.

Our Young People and leaders are working hard to improve their skills so that they can be awarded permits to help support more Beavers, Cubs and Scouts on the water – so far this season one of our leaders has successfully completed sailing training and 3 of our older Scouts/Explorers have gained self plus one sailing permits at Spinnaker – so congratulations to them all.

Our Beavers have been busy making bug boxes for our wildlife area – they look fantastic!

District Leaders Skills Weekend

By Simon Down and Barry Stride, Nights Away Advisors

On the weekend 15th -16th April a small group of leaders descended on Ferny Crofts to pick up new skills and practice develop the skills they had.

Attendees arrived and those that had brought a tent proceeded to put these up. We then showed one of the better ways of erecting a patrol tent. Alastair from Poulner decided to grab this for accommodation. We also showed some of the benefits of patrol tents. We also had a look at Magic Mike’s Tarp.

After lunch we had a quick refresher on map and then decided to put some of this in practise and went out for a short hike. We used pacing and timed legs, handrailing and other techniques to locate a desired point in the forest.

On return to camp, we discussed the use and safety of axes, saws and knifes. Everyone tried these out and then prepared some firewood.

We then practised fire lighting; this was important as we needed the fire for dinner. Cowboy meals were prepared then put in the embers of the fire to cook. For afters we had chocolate bananas also cooked in the embers. The rest of the evening was spent chatting around the fire.

Sunday morning was started with a cooked breakfast then began looking into other skills. We managed to strike the sleeping tents in the morning and after a dinner of Bannocks cooked on the fire we took the mess tent down. Everyone helped to get the kit back to the vans. We all enjoyed the weekend, trainers and trainees alike.

Thank you to all that attended and helped. If you would like to attend a similar event, let myself or Barry know.

Joseph’s Triple Fundraising Challenge

By Joseph Hague, Lyndhurst Explorer Scout Unit

Fund Raising for WSJ 2023 – South Korea
After a hearty brekky, we headed off to start the Triple Challenge!! We began the ascent of the Old Man of Coniston, one of the Lake District’s most iconic (and steepest!) peaks. At 803m it might not be the highest peak in the National Park, but you will ascend this height in under 2.5 miles of walking, so it’s a seriously steep test of your endurance!

From the summit we had spectacular views over the lake to Grizedale Forest and beyond. Overlooking the small town of Coniston, the extensive view from the summit included much of the southern Lake District, Morecambe Bay, Blackpool Tower, Winter Hill in the Pennines, the Lancashire coast and the Isle of Man.

We trekked Distance – 14km / 8.6 miles Highest point – 803m Highlights – Completed in 3Hrs and 33 mins.

Our second Challenge is set on Coniston Water. This is one of the Lake District’s most famous lakes, and its size has made it the site of many famous water speed record attempts over the years. Using twin, sit-on-top kayaks the challenge will be to navigate around a 2mile course on the lake. The lake is half a mile wide, close to 5 miles long and 184 feet deep. Coniston Water has three small islands (owned by the National Trust) which prove important habitats for natural wildlife. Brilliant time on the lake – couldn’t help laughing at mum who had a go at dad, when he was rocking the boat, cos he was finding it hard work!

We kayaked Distance – 3 km / 2 miles – Completed ¾ Hrs

The third and final challenge was the mountain biking route around Grizedale Forest. This is a fully sign posted 10mile route that follows some of the toughest mountain bike trails in Grizedale Forest. Don’t be deceived by the distance, mountain biking on off-road trails is a serious challenge.

Sandwiched between Coniston Water and Lake Windermere, the forest offers great views over Helvellyn. We also got to see some of the famous outdoor sculptures that dot the area too. Had a good laugh, when Thomas got a puncture and I left him for dust to finish the course!!

We cycled Distance – 16 km / 10 miles -Total ascent

855m – Highest point 266m – Completed in 2Hrs and 45mins – (Highlighted on map in yellow)

Had a brilliant time completing the Challenge – still counting the pennies – but hoping that I’ve raised over £600+ Thanks to everyone who sponsored me!! Also, a big Thank you to my parents & Godparents who helped with this event.

St. George’s Day of celebration at Windsor Castle.

By Rosie Le Bas, Assistant Cub Scout Leader at 1st Lyndhurst and 5th Farnborough

Completing your Queens Scout Award can be one of the hardest things you do, so when I got to go to Windsor Castle to celebrate last year and be a part of the parade, I was so proud of my achievement.

This year I was honoured to be selected for the Team of Ten to carry the King’s Standard in the Colour Party. Each year only 6 people are asked to carry the flags and 4 are chosen to deliver the service, back in October I was thrilled to be told I was selected for this.

This meant over the next few months up to St George’s Day we met up as a Team and had to practice marching, turning and learn many different manoeuvres to meet the standard required for such an event. This was as well as helping the service planning team in practising their speeches and body percussion for their service in St Georges chapel.

On the day it was amazing to celebrate with all the Queens Scouts as well as meet Bear Grylls and the Duke of Kent.

Rosie with her proud parents, Tim & Sara

I would thoroughly recommend any Queens or Kings Scouts to consider applying for the Team of Ten as it is such an amazing opportunity to take part in!

And anyone considering their King Scout award- go for it!!! I never thought I could and yet I did!

What’s coming up?

Train the Trainer course opens

By Claire Hawkins, County Training Manager

We will be running a train the trainer event on June 4th for any leader who would like to learn to be a trainer and join the County training team, presenting modules at residential weekends at Ferny Crofts and on zoom. This will be held at the Dr Peters Centre in Romsey. If you would like more information about being a trainer, please drop Claire an email to organise a chat. [email protected]

If anyone is interested, please sign up via the usual channel before 6th May. Training Calendar and Sign Up Link

Skills for Residential Experiences

By Claire Hawkins, County Training Manager

There are still a few spaces left for the Module 38 in May. There is a requirement to have completed Module 16 Introduction to Residential Experiences, but that is being run the evening before. Sign up on the above link. Training Calendar and Sign Up Link

Copythorne Carnival

2nd Copythorne Scout Group would like to invite you to support the Copythorne carnival on the 10th of June. It’s going to be a great event with lots of fun activities and delicious food. Please come along and show your support!

Copythorne Carnival Fun Run

By Paul and Julie Stubbington

Monday 12 June @ 19:30hrs

There are less than 30 spaces left in each distance and when they’re gone, they’re gone. Online entry is available at:

Copythorne Carnival Fun Run Sign Up

Help is required with marshalling on the day and would be greatly appreciated, we understand that there will be a free hotdog or burger for volunteers, as well as the satisfaction of helping them raise a terrific amount of funds for a great cause.

Reminders, opportunities and notices.

Updated Nights Away Notification Forms

By Robin Mair, Team District Commissioner

Please be aware that as of the 1st June 2023 all NAN forms that are not on the current version 11 application will be automatically returned to applicants to be updated on the correct form. Here’s the link.


Are you having a Nights Away event during the first 4 weeks of the school Summer Holiday?

If so, make sure you send these in for authorisation by 15 July latest. Robin and Kevin are away for Project ’23 from 22 July to 13 August, and will be very busy the week before. Lynn will have very limited availability 17 – 28 due to a County & HQs commitment.

Mandatory Ongoing Learning compliance

Please do not ignore the emails sent out by the HQ’s compliance team, requesting completion of Safety and/or Safeguarding, Mandatory Ongoing Learning. The County Commissioner is taking a very firm stance regarding volunteers with expired Safety or Safeguarding, his instruction is to suspend until the learning is completed and Compass updated.

Suspending a volunteer is very easy and quick to do, however removing the suspension can take days and needs the DC, CC and the Regional Commissioner to do approvals, plus it adds to their workload. There is no need for anyone to have expired Safety and Safeguarding, everyone has access to their own Compass record and the expiry date for ongoing learning is at the bottom of the ‘Training’ tab.

You do not have to wait for the modules to expire to do the eLearning, a week or two before the expiry date is ideal, or earlier than that if you need to schedule it in. If you have not yet registered to access Compass then the link is here.

If you need assistance to register then please ask us for help. From this link you can also reset your password or retrieve a forgotten username. More help is available by phoning the Information Centre on 0345 300 1818.

First Aid

Last month the County Commissioner started looking at volunteers with expired First Aid, he is giving very short timeframes for a Course to be booked and he wants to be notified of the course date booked. He will not hesitate in requesting a Wood Badge role being changed to a Section Assistant, which will have a knock-on effect for Groups and Sections.

First Aid booking link: First Response – Hampshire Scouts – Adult Training You can see your First Aid expiry date in the same location as Safety & Safeguarding.

Tails of the New Forest – 30th April 2023
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