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

Scout Principles And Moral Re-armament

Lancaster Guardian 25 November 1938:-

FOR the first time in its history, the membership of the Lancaster and District Boy Scouts Association has reached the 600 mark.

The Association held their annual meeting in the Lancaster Town Hall on Tuesday, the Mayor of Lancaster Councillor Mrs. Musgrave-Hoyle presiding, supported by the County Commissioner, Alderman T. W. Helme, and officials of the Association.

“I have always had a great interest in all youth movements, particularly in the Scouts and in the Lads’ Club,” said the Mayor.  “I don’t know why, but I always seemed to have got amongst the boys.  (Laughter.)   But I am quite content to continue helping the boys, because I have always had the happiest associations with them in every shape or form.”

The Mayor continued: “One has heard a lot in the City, and in the County generally, of moral re-armament.  When one looks round at the principles of moral re-armament are really those that the Scouts have always advocated.  (Hear hear.)”  It is a pity that many more of the men of today, both in England and foreign countries, don’t try to model themselves on the principles of the Bot Scouts, and then there would not be half the amount of bad feeling and suspicion in the world as there is at the present moment.” (Hear, hear.)

 Work In Crises

The Mayor, speaking of the difficulties under which the movement worked, said they as the Corporation were partly responsible for some of their difficulties, because of the vast housing schemes which had upset the areas and the district in general.  She did not know what the effect of this had been on the Scouts’ movement, but she did know it was difficult to keep people together in scattered areas.

“I hear that many of your Rovers have volunteered to give their blood to the Royal Lancaster Infirmary, and that a great many have been called upon to make that sacrifice .  I believe, too, that the Deputy-Mayor made arrangements with you during the crisis, to meet the refugees at the station to deal with that part of the work, and I think it is a great thing for the country when you are able to do so much towards helping at such times.  If you carry on as you have always carried on, whatever difficulties you may meet, your energy and determination will succeed.  If you carry on  on these lines – do all you can, by all means you can, by all ways you can, in all places you can, at all times you can, to all the people you can, as long as you ever can – then you’ll never go wrong.” (Applause.)

  After Mr. F. H. Capstick had presented his annual report as hon. secretary, the financial statement was given by Mr. John G. Swainson, who said the balance in hand was £110 5s.1d, which was a slight increase on last year, but outstanding subscriptions were still to come in.

Mr. F. J. T. Adams presented the report of the Swimming Committee, and said the average weekly attendance was 60.  Several successes had been gained, and the 13th Lancaster Troop had won the Championship Cup.  The finances showed a small balance in hand.

Mr. W. Ellwood (Badge Secretary) reported that the total number of proficiency badges gained during the year was 62.  In addition to these, four First Class badges, three Red and White Cords, and one King’s Scout badge had been awarded.  Great activity had been shown for the Fireman’s Badge, of which 17 had been gained, and the Ambulance and Missioner badges, of which nine each had been gained.  Individual Troop gains were: 6th Lancaster, one King’s Scout, one First-Class, and 15 proficiency; 1st Carnforth, 15 proficiency; 13th Lancaster, one Red and White Cords, and 14 proficiency.  There had been a surprising revival of interest in the Cub Proficiency Badges, 25 having gained awards during the year, as compared with 13 last year.

Alderman Helme’s Successor

The Mayoress then presented the Lancaster City Shield to the captain of the 20th Lancaster Troop. This Shield was presented by the Corporation to mark the raising of the town to City status.  A committee was formed, and it was decided the Shield should be awarded on the Log Books.

County Commissioner T. W. Helme presented the Warrant to Mr.J. Dodds Drummond, who had been appointed District Commissioner in succession to him (Alderman Helme), with the remark, “I have the greatest possible confidence in my successor.”

Responding, Mr. Drummond said that when he considered that the final responsibility for 600 boys rested upon his shoulders he realised he had undertaken  no easy task.  It was difficult, he said, to follow a man like Alderman Helme, because he had the welfare of every Troop in the district at heart.

The County Commissioner presented the King’s Scout Badge to J. Shuttleworth, of the 6th Lancaster Troop, and the meeting ended with a talk by Mr. T. A. Thomas, Assistant District Commissioner for Blackpool .


Chief officers were elected as follows : Sir James Travis Clegg (President), Dr. J. A. Tomb (chairman), Mr. F. G.T. Adams (vice chairman), Mr. F. H. Capstick (hon. secretary), Mr. John G Swainson (hon. treasurer), Messrs. W. Tyson and A. D. Sharpe (District Scoutmasters), Mr. W. Ellwood (Badge Secretary), Mr. F. Sugden (Badge Organiser), Mr. J. V. Smith (Press correspondent).  The various committees were also appointed.

More Members Enrolled

In his 24th annual report, Mr. Capstick said: “For the first time the following census return shows we have crossed the 600 mark, with an increase this year of 40.  This is chiefly due to the Wolf Cub Section, amongst whom we welcome the 6th Lancaster (Greaves Methodist) with a pack of ten.

Scouts are seven less and Scouters four, but Rovers show an increase of eleven.  We welcome two new Troops at Halton and St Chad’s, Skerton, the former is noteworthy as the result of cooperation with the Lads’ Club authorities.  For the time being we have lost the Caton Troop, through lack of a Scouter.  The Rover Section is very flourishing, all three crews registering an increase.

“The census is as follows: – 1937-38 : 192 Wolf Cubs, 305 Scouts, 48 Rovers, 62 Scouters, seven Rovers with warrants, total 607 ; 1936-37: 152 Wolf Cubs , 312 Scouts, 37 Rovers, 66 Scouters, seven  rovers with warrants, total 567; 1937-38 23 Groups constituted as follows: 13 Wolf Cub Packs, 23 Scout Troops, three Rover Crews; 1936-37: 23 Groups constituted as follows: 14 Wolf Cub Packs, 22 Scout Troops, three  Rover Crews.

“We started the year in November with an entirely new venture, the staging of “Radio Lancaster” for three nights an original production in which Cubs, Scouts and Rovers took part.  They played to full houses each night, and profits were given to the Invalid Children’s Aid Association.  Special thanks are due to the organisers, Mr. Drummond ADC, and Mr. Peters, ASM of the 20th.  This was repeated later at Bare, to help the 4th Morecambe Sea Scouts, who had lost a boat in a gale.

“The P.T. class has met regularly weekly during the winter and spring months, organised by Mr. T. Goulding and Mr. F. R. Hayton of the 13th Lancaster.  This is open to all Scouts .  We should welcome a still larger attendance, but unfortunately, Saturday is the only possible night.  The Seeonee Pack (Cub Scouters) held an annual camp at Conder Green, and also visited Preston.  The annual Cup Beano was held in February, and a campfire at Springfield Hall in September.  In December, we had a wide game for Scouts by night, which provided a new experience for many. A second by day was held later in the year.

“The Scout Masters’ annual dinner was held in February, and attracted a good attendance, including the ladies.

“Our eliminating County competition for the Derby Ambulance Shield was held at Morecambe this year in March.  The 13th Lancaster’s put up a team, and we wish them better luck next time, as they were not the winners selected to enter the finals in Liverpool.  A number of 1st Class Scouts visited Windsor for the St. George’s Day service attended by their Majesties.  Locally, the Cubs held their remembrance service on the lawn at Springfield Hall.  

House-to-House Collection

“On April 29th, we opened our three months’ campaign as part of the National Appeal to raise funds to put the whole Scout Movement on a sound financial basis.  One of our chief efforts was the house-to-house collection in the City, and also at Carnforth.  These entailed much  organisation.  The response was both kindly and generous as a sum of over £50 being raised.  This national appeal has raised approximately £250,000, including a very generous gift from Lord Nuffield of £50,000.

” Our County returns are just over £2,500.  We cannot give our exact local figures, as some of our subscribers gave through the County or direct to HQ.  We are very grateful to them.  Mr. F. J. Dickens, vice-chairman of the District Bank, kindly acted as our treasurer.

 “It is many years since we held an Association Whitsuntide Camp.  The DC, Mr. Helme, acted as Camp Chief.  This was held by permission of  Mr. W. A. Jowett on the banks of the Lune at Caton, and greatly enjoyed by all.  The Rev. T. W. Baverstock, GSM, of the 16th, conducted the ‘Scouts Own’ on Whit-Sunday .  “Roman sports”, bathing and surf riding on land, added to its joys.  Another very popular event was a well attended Scout party given by our president (Sir James Travis Clegg Jp. DL,) on July 2nd at Bailrigg.  

“Another new feature this year was, what we expect will prove to be an annual event, the holding of our first NW Lancs County Swimming Gala.  This originated from the gift of a beautiful swimming shield presented to Mr. Helme by the wood-carving section of the School of Art. The Lancaster Association was asked to organise this event, which took place on September 27.  The Lancaster Association won the shield after keen competition and much enthusiasm.  

“The City Shield, presented by the Corporation last year, has been won by the 20th Lancasters. The test this year was on log books kept by each patrol.  These show the activities of the Troop, both indoor and outside, encourage the working of the patrol system, develop “stickability”, and give the scope for originality in description, design, and sketchings,  and so meet the condition laid down, viz.: ‘To encourage a higher standard of scouting.”

Rover Section Full Of Life

“The Rover Section has been very full of life. A number took part in the first all-Lancashire Rover Moot held at Huntroyd Park, Padiham, in June.  One Rover visited the Newcastle and Durham Counties Moot held in Newcastle, and also a party visited a new Rover camp site opening by the County Commissioner near Broughton in Furness.  Most of the Rovers have enrolled as blood donors at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary, and many have been called upon.

“The new Rover rules have proved a source of interest, and have been taken in earnest by all crews.  Many visitors have been welcomed by the 4th and 13th County dens (Applehouse and Artle Den) throughout the year.   One notable gathering was the bonfire, fireworks and camp fire given by the 13th Rovers, to the farming community in the neighbourhood.  Over one hundred visitors, including some senior Scouts, enjoyed a successful evening.  The Carnforth Crew is vigorous and a strong.  Some of the 13th Rovers, when visiting the latter to assist at an investiture travelled by canal in a canoe of their own making.

A Great Loss

“During the year we have lost Mr. P. S. Senior, an invaluable Scouter, who has left the district.  This is indeed are a great loss.

“Inspired by the fine address of Mr. James, Commissioner for Handicapped Scouts, at our annual meeting in 1937, we have formed a committee, consisting of Messrs. L.H. Slater, W. Ellwood, and J. V. Smith, to deal with Handicapped Scouts in Lancaster.

“Our thanks are once again due to many – Mrs. J. G. Wright, Colonel de Vitre, Storey Bros. and Co. Ltd., the “Lancaster Guardian”, the police, both City and County, for invaluable accommodation ; to the City Education Committee, the Press, and Mr. J. V. Smith, for his weekly Scout Notes, which are so much appreciated, not forgetting the Badge examiners and other friends who have helped in so many ways.

“We are sorry to lose our District Commissioner, Mr. T. W. Helme, at the end of this year, and we congratulate him on his appointment as County Commissioner for NW Lancashire.  Mr. Helme, who succeeded the late Alderman W. Briggs, has been District Commissioner for ten years, and was ADC for five years before that. The whole Association, from the youngest Cub upwards, owes a personal debt to our Commissioner, whose untiring energy and boundless enthusiasm were at the service of all.  Wise in counsel, and active in camp and den,”Long Panther”, as many call him, is the living embodiment of Scout Principles.  The rise in vigour and scope of this Association is largely due to his leadership, and we are glad that his fifteen years of service here have been crowned by seeing the census return top the 600 mark.”