We provide fun, challenge and adventure to over 1400 young people in North Lancashire – #SkillsForLife
We provide fun, challenge and adventure to over 1400 young people in North Lancashire – #SkillsForLife

How Scouts Can Help Country’s Youth 1937

Lancashire Evening Post 13 November 1937:-

Advice at Lancaster

The annual meeting of the Lancaster and District Boy Scouts’ Association, at Lancaster Town Hall, last night, was addressed by the Mayor (Councillor H. Dowthwaite).

Deploring the language of many young people today, he appealed to Scouts to always have a clean tongue. If they had a clean tongue they would have a clean mind and a clean body.

The Mayor presented to Dr. J. A. Tomb, chairman of the Association, the City Shield, provided by the Corporation in connection with City celebrations, and to a number of King Scouts roll of honour certificates.

Badge Secretary J. W. Ellwood reported an increased number of proficiency badges awarded during the year – 233, as against 184 last year. A Debater’s, a Miner’s and a World Friendship badge had been awarded for the first time in Lancaster.

The annual census in September revealed, it was stated only a slight decrease in the number of Scouts, compared with last year.

During the year there had been the addition of one troop – the 23rd. Lancaster (Christ Church).

Presenting the accounts, the treasurer (Mr. J. D. Swainson), announced that a boat had been obtained for the Sea Scouts at the modest price of £10. There was a balance in hand of £114, compared with £118 at the beginning of the year. It was an excellent result when it was known that a contribution of £37 10s. had been made towards the expenses of the Holland Jamboree.

Officials and representatives were re-elected en bloc, with Sir James Travis-Clegg as president and Mr. F. H. Capstick the new secretary.

An address was given by Assistant County Commissioner H. James on the handicapped Scouts of  South-East Lancashire. He said nobody was more amazed at the remarkable growth of the Scout movement than the Chief Scout, not so much in numbers as the many branches that had grown, such as the handicapped Scouts. The handicapped Scout – covering the blind, the deaf, the crippled, the epileptic, the mental etc. – did not want to be petted. He wanted to be treated like other boys as an adventurer, and the Scout movement helped to lift him out of himself.

Expressing thanks to the Mayor, the District Commissioner, County Alderman T. W. Helme, who presided, said a clean tongue was a strict law of the Scouting movement. A Scout found breaking the law had cold water poured down his sleeves.

Lancaster Guardian 19 November 1937:-

Boy Scouts’ Annual Meeting.

New Secretary Appointed.

Criticisms of the language used by certain classes of youths in Lancaster, were made by the Mayor, Councillor H. Dowthwaite, at the annual meeting of the Lancaster Boy Scouts Association, held in the Mayor’s Parlour, on Friday evening.

The Mayor, who presided, said he was pained when he walked about Lancaster and heard the language of some of the young people.  One could hardly pass a group of young people without hearing language which was not at all that it should be.

He appealed to the Scouts to set an example by carrying out that Scout Law which had taught them to have a clean tongue .  “You Scouts have a wonderful influence,” he said.

The Mayor paid tribute to the work of Mr. S. Ashby Neate, a former secretary, who had to leave the district through ill health.

His Worship then presented to Dr. J. A. Tomb (Chairman of the Association), the Scouts’ City Shield.

Replying, Dr. Tomb assured the Mayor that the shield would be used to further interest in the Scout Movement in the City.  They appreciated very much the kindness and generosity of the City Council in giving that shield in commemoration of the raising of Lancaster to City status.

Proficiency badges

The Badge Secretary’s report, read by Mr. E. Ellwood, stated that there was an increase in the number of proficiency badges gained.  There were 223 against 184 the previous year.  Three badges were gained which, as far as could be traced, had never before been won in Lancaster.  They were the Miner’s, Debater’s, and World Friendship badges.  One Starman’s badge had been gained for the first time since 1930, while the first Rover proficiency badge i.e.(Rambler) since 1931 had also been awarded a local Scout.  Six first-class badges had been gained as against 13 last year, but there were more King’s Scout badges this year, eleven having been awarded as against one badge last year.  That fact accounted for the decrease in first-class badges, because a King’s Scout must have a first-class badge and therefore the greater included the less.

With regard to cords, there had been 18 green and yellow against seven last year, and two red and white against one the previous year.

Other badges included: Pathfinder 30, Firemen 29, Ambulance 21, Handyman 17, Cyclist 12.

Thirteen Cub proficiency badges had been gained, as against seven last year .

Mr. S. Ashby Neate was secretary until recently, and the Association had been without a secretary until Mr. J. V. Smith had undertaken the duties.

This fact was mentioned by Dr. Tomb, who read the 28 annual report.  The report added that the Association’s number were slightly down in some sections, but increased in others.  They welcomed an increase in Scouters, as it was on them or that the success of the movement so largely depended.  They had lost 15 the previous year, and it was satisfactory to report an increase this year.  Since the census on September 30th, a troop had been started at Halton.  It was a revival of an old troop, and was formed in connection with the Lads’ Club there.  The total membership of the Association was 584 as against 567 the previous year.

The Association welcomed the formation of the 23rd Lancaster (Christ church), consisting of Scouts and Cub sections, and the Scout Troop at Abbeystead.  The Kellet troop had been merged with Bolton-le-Sands owing to the scarcity of boys in that village.

During the year the Executive (as newly constituted last year), had met four times under the able chairmanship of Dr. Tomb.

“We record with gratitude,” stated the report, “Mr. Ashby Neate’s great service to the movement.  In spite of severe illness and bereavement he set a fine example of the 8th Scout Law.  His loss will be greatly felt.  The Executive has arranged to record his services in a permanent form, and wished him health and happiness in his retirement.


The outstanding Scout event of the year was the International Jamboree held in Holland in August.  The NW Lancashire contingent was led by the DC, and consisted of 180 Scouts, of which 29 came from this Association.  The British contingent numbered 8,000.   About 28,000 scouts were in camp. Mr. Helme had the assistance of Mr. Darlington and Mr. Harbisher of the 20th, whilst Mr.  J. Hodgson, of the 21st, acted as QM, and Mr. J. V. Smith as reporter for Lancaster.  The camp was visited by the Chief Scout and other notabilities.  The Right Worshipful the Mayor, Councillor R. E. Bamber, gave the Scouts a civic send-off at the station.  Three days were spent sightseeing in Holland at the close.  Civic receptions were arranged by the Dutch in most of the places visited.

Prior to the Jamboree a preparatory week-end camp was held at Burton-in-Lonsdale, where the South African contingent to the Jamboree, 46 in number, were entertained while touring England.

A successful annual swimming gala was held on October 6th, 1936.  The Mayor, Mr. J. G. E. Clark, presided, and the Mayoress distributed the awards, including the challenge shield won by the 13th Lancaster.

In March, the eliminating competition of NW Lancashire for the Derby Ambulance Shield was held in Lancaster.

Two Association wide games were held this year, and greatly enjoyed, though the numbers participating were not quite so large as anticipated.  

Scouts attended the Mayoral Procession on Mayor Sunday in November, 1936, and also the local Coronation Service of King George VI on May 9th.

On May 12th, Coronation Day, they took part in the Scout National Organisation, which consisted of selling the official programmes.  The very elaborate organisation necessary was in the capable hands of the ADC, Mr. J. Dodds Drummond.  Every Village was visited.  Proceeds were in the aid of the King George V’s Jubilee Trust Fund, and the movement receive the thanks of H.M. King George VI.

“It is impossible to include all the events of the year, “continued the report, “But amongst these the Seonee Cub Pack visited the home of Miss Myers, . ADC, Preston in Lea, and the . . .

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