2nd Didsbury (88th Manchester) Scout Group AGM 30-6-10

Annual Report


Chairman’s review of the year


Iam pleased to report another successful year for 2ndDidsbury (88thManchester) Scout Group. I am also pleased to report that the numbers in all Sections (Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Explorers) have remained high throughout the year.


It was an action packed year for lots of the children with many camps and trips in addition to the weekly activities held in the Scout Hut.


I hope all the Beavers, Cubs and Scouts have had a great time and learnt new skills.


The Scout Movement

In the relatively short time I have been involved in the Scouts I have grown to appreciate it's true value.


It gives our children the chance to have new experiences, learn new skills, have fun, spent time away from the home (and us parents!). They also meet other children from different schools and of different ages and it gets them away from the many tempting screens.


This is all made possible by the Leaders and their Assistants who all do it voluntarily and with such enthusiasm.


Become involved

If you want to help out there are various ways you can do so.


You could join the Group Executive and become a section Representative - You would be a link between the parents and the Executive and attend about 10 meeting a year on a Monday evening. We may ask you to get some feedback or liaise with the parents and occasional help out with something etc.

If you can - please contact me - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


If you have any great ideas, or know anyone with particular talents, that would make for a great session for the Beavers, Cubs or Scouts we would love to hear from you.


Or if you would just like to help out on the occasional session do let a Leader know.



The Standing Order collection system has proved to be a secure and resulting in a more stable funding base. Subscriptions have remained at £7 per month per child - which I think we can all agree is very good value.


These subscriptions pay for the equipment/resources used, plus the rent and other bills. A proportion also goes to the national Scout Association which helps pay for the resources they provide such as insurance cover and the fantastic camp facilities.


I would like to ask all parents who haven’t already signed a Gift Aid application form recently to do so. Again, these can be obtained through a Leader or by emailing me. The forms only take a minute or two to complete and all together could result in £hundreds for the Didsbury Group.


Finally I would like to thank all the Leaders, Assistant Leaders and all who have volunteered to help the Group for all their hard work throughout the year.


Martin Woodfield
Chairman (
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Treasurers report


A good year financially for the group. This year the accounts show a small surplus - in reality there are some Kandersteg deposits in the total and the group broke even.


The main fundraiser was Didsbury festival, which raised £693 for the group. This year we also submitted a gift aid claim raising £251. Thanks to all the parents who have provided their details for the claim, if there is anyone who hasn't and would like to please ask a leader and they can provide you with a form.


Matt Rushton



GSL’s report


Our numbers have increased in all sections and the Beaver section even opened a second colony this May, they meet before the district Explorer unit on a Wednesday night. It is intended that both colonies will only have 15 in each so that meeting nights will not be too chaotic and the cub section will not get overwhelmed.


All sections have had children gain their Chief scouts award, the beavers have nearly all gained it, cubs TomRushton & scouts Darrel Lowe. It does get much harder to gain as you work though the sections.


We had a very successful family camp last September. The same venue has been booked for this year on 17-19 September.


The Cub, scout and district explorer sections combined camping and catering again for this years Pike View Hike. All sections were well placed in the results tables but we did not win anything this year.


Rowena and Brian from our scout section have both gained permits to take the scouts hill walking this year.


Unfortunately Kevin Lowe our cub scout leader has had to stop attending meeting for the time being due to health issues. He hopes to be back after the summer break, in the mean time we wish him a speedy recovery.


Eight of the district explorer scout unit are attending the Japanese Jamboree this August and 2 of the unit and one from the troop have been selected to go to the world scout jamboree in Sweden next year. The group is also going on it’s 5year trip to the International scout centre at Kandersteg in Switzerland this August, this will be the groups 6th trip there.


The Didsbury Viking Explorer Unit which is the district unit continue to meet on a Wednesday at our HQ, there are 14 on the unit books at present.


The District Network, which is the section for 18 to 25 year olds. Now regularly uses our HQ for meeting on a Monday night. We now have a formal partnership agreement with them.


The HQ is also used on a regular basic by the district for leader training and appointments evenings.

A google calendar has been set up on the group website to try and avoid clashes of Monday evening meetings.


Keith Hampson (GSL)


Beaver Scout Report


Beavers continue to have a waiting list even though a new colony was started in April this year. Fran has left us to go and work in Austria but we hope to have her back in September. Caroline finished in the New Year to have a baby boy. We have two new leaders who help on a Monday, they are Ivette and Edna who are both from Mexico. Sue has been away in Australia and during that time there were several parents who helped out on a regular basis. Thank you for all your assistance and also to Georgina who is assistant beaver scout leader.


There is a totally new team on a Wednesday. We have George and Helen Perez-Luna, Johann Rowan and our young leader is Helen Robinson. We were very pleased to have the District Commissioner come to the first investitures in the new colony, which happened in May.


During the summer term last year we carried out outdoor activities but these had to be swapped round at times due to the inclement weather. We attended the county activity day with the theme of Animania. We also attended the cub camp, which was held at our county campsite, Linnet Clough. Thanks to the parents who helped on the day, I think they enjoyed having a go on the high ropes! At least they all came down safely! During the winter term we carried out the Air activity and Creative activity badges, IT stage one and the Join-in-Japan badge. This is in addition to the challenge badges that are gained throughout the year. Most of the beavers gain the highest badge in the beaver section, which is the Bronze Chief Scout award, this is gained by gaining all 6 challenge badges.


Over the year we have tasted food from different countries, got to know our patron saints, carried out experiments, learnt how to be helpful at home (honest!), craft – making a photo frame, Easter chicks, tiger masks. So we really have been busy.

This term we have been supporting Shelterbox and the group raised £292 by selling Easter chicks and rabbits. We have been learning about natural disasters and the role of Shelterbox. Along with the cubs we are hoping to gain our International Partnership award with our continued support of this charity. We also wrote poems about the devastation caused by the earthquake in Haiti, these were submitted to the competition organised by Oxfam.

We have had a very busy year and plan to continue doing so.


Helen Hampson

(Beaver Scout Leader)


Cub Scout Report


The Cubs pack this year has seen a few major changes firstly with the departure of Sue Bullied our Cub Scout leader who has moved away to Glasgow. Sue was an excellent leader and has been missed by both the cubs and the remaining leaders. Kevin Lowe has stepped in to take on the role of Cub Scout leader supported by Ben, Alan & Alex. In addition to the existing leadership we have had the pleasure to have James Last & Simon Jermy join the leadership team who have both brought fresh and new ideas to the pack meetings.


The pack currently has over 30 cub members with a regular nightly attendance of over 25 on each pack night. The pack meetings are very lively with all the children participating in the games and activities enthusiastically. There is currently a waiting list for new members to join the Cub pack which is only likely to grow since we now have 2 Beaver Colony’s feeding into one Cub pack.


The focus of the Cub pack at a group level has been to cover some of the challenge badge work required for the Cubs to attain their Chief Scout Silver award. Consequently the activities have been looking to help them achieve their Community & Creative Challenge badges, this has involved such activities as First Aid training, Building Bird Boxes, A visit to St James Church, Magic Show, Fair Trade trading post game, Shelter box, Semaphore Signalling and Map reading.


The annual Cub Camp at Linnet Clough in July 2009 was a great success. The camp theme was Robin Hood’s merry cubs. The weather was excellent and the children enjoyed all the many and varied activities that were laid on by the equally enthusiastic leaders. The highlight of the camp was undoubtedly the high ropes course on the Cube and having experienced the activity personally I was amazed that the children found the courage to complete this challenge (I very nearly turned back however my knees were knocking too much to be able to turn round)


The District laid on a few events this year that unfortunately due to limitations in availability of leaders we had to take the decision not to participate in, these were the Japan Day at Linnet Clough and the swimming gala. However the group did participate in the annual district 5-a-side football competition and the cross country running in which the children did very well and enjoyed. This year the group entered another team into the Bolton district event “The Pike View Hike Challenge”. This is a very demanding event that requires the cubs to plan and navigate round a 7 mile course whilst also completing a number of challenges on route. The 4 cubs who participated in the event rose magnificently to the challenge and showed skills in both map reading and team work that were praiseworthy. The Cub team finished off coming 5th out of 28 teams which was I believe a fantastic achievement for their second attempt at such an event.


At the beginning of the summer term we will be looking to take the Cubs to the park as often as possible (weather permitting) for activities such as Frisbee football, Water Rockets and Orienteering.


Kevin Lowe

(Cub scout leader)


Scout Section Report


This has been another action packed year for the scout section, helped by Brian, Joanne, Yolander, Jon, Gareth and Rowena. Sadly we will be losing Yolander who is going to Hong Kong to work and Jon who has moved to London. We would like to thank them for all their hard work.


The year started with family camp, quickly followed by Technology camp at Linnet Clough, where the scouts could gain their IT and electronic badges.

We then had another very successful Winter camp held at Boarfold campsite, a very remote and basic campsite where the scouts learnt survival skills. They enjoyed learning how to pluck pheasants, cover them in mud and cook them on an open fire.


We then took the troop on a training weekend for the Pike View Challenge, starting off at Barnswood and hiking across to Wildboar Clough. We all enjoyed bivying out on the first night and eating muesli and custard for breakfast. The scouts thought it was part of their training when Brian fell over hurting his leg. However they soon realised it was for real when Brian had to retire and the troop carry on without him. The hike ended with a stay at the remote and individual Cumberland Cottage.


Ivan, James Pearse, Max and James Whitmore represented the troop at the Pike View Challenge and we would like to thank them for their hard work over the weekend.


Our next camp was a climbing week at the Roaches in Leek. We were lucky enough to stay in Rock cottage at the foot of the rocks and could get full days climbing in. We had fantastic weather and it was an excellent camp where we were able to learn new climbing techniques, we would like to thank Keith for running the climbing for us. We are looking forward to our two week activity camp in Kandersteg, Switzerland this summer.


As well as camps we have worked towards many of the activity badges which has allowed the scouts to work towards their Gold Scout Awards. Darrel Lowe will be collecting his award later in the year.


Other highlights include having tea on the 23rd floor of the Hilton, Canoeing, Didsbury Festival, cooking, talent competitions and wide games.


Rowena Kidd

(Scout Leader)