Scouting milestone marked by many in Middleton

The celebration in Middleton
The celebration in Middleton

THE 40-year anniversary of scouting in Middleton has been celebrated in style.

Around 60 people, including a whole host of former Cubs, Scouts, Leaders and Group Executive members united on Saturday, October 6, at the Scout headquarters in Middleton to mark the milestone.

Parents and friends also turned out in full force to join in the birthday celebrations.

Chairman Roger Belton said: “It was a great privilege and honour to be able to bring these people together. It was a very social evening and those who attended thoroughly enjoyed it.”

A number of original leaders attended, some who had set up the first Cub pack, plus some of their very first Cubs, past and current members of the Group Executive and fundraising committees.

Among them was Ann Haine, who was involved in the very first committee, and had been treasurer for a number of years.

The birthday celebration revisited history, with Mr Belton showcasing stories taken from old minutes, newsletters and photographs from an archive dating back to 1972, along with some of the first committee meeting minutes and newsletters.

He said those people who established scouting 40 years ago had a vision of bringing scouting to young people.

“They built it with a very strong voluntary ethic to make this happen, putting their vision into effect and that is why scouting needs to continue to grow in future years.

“The torch is being carried by a number of leaders who are more senior in years and now we need to pass that torch over to a much younger community of leaders.

“That is what the group aim to do now in terms of finding more help to lead the group for the next forty years, to carry on with the crusade and continue on with fresh blood,” said Mr Belton.

Throughout the evening photographs, videos and super 8 film of past camps dating back to 1972 were 
also shown.

A celebratory birthday cake was cut by Rosemary Phillips, the longest standing member of the Scout group executive, whose family have had the longest connection with the group.

The Bognor Regis District Scout’s district commissioner, Alison McCaffrey, also proposed a toast.