2nd Didsbury (88th Manchester) Scout Group AGM 16-6-11

Annual Report


Chairman’s review of the year


The 2ndDidsburyScout Group has had another successful year and has maintained full numbers in Beavers ,Cubs and Scouts. It was another action packed year for the Group with many camps and trips in addition to the weekly activities held in the Scout Hut.

The year has not been without incident for the Executive with a number of challenges. I am pleased to report that these have been successfully negotiated.

We have had to agree to a rent increase for the land we lease from Manchester City Council but were able to keep this down to manageable levels (despite the Council's initial demands).

We have also had the ongoing negotiations with Greater Manchester Public Transport Executive and their contractors about the Metrolink extension. The result has been some changes to the area outside but with little loss of land. There are plans for better fencing and a reinstatement of the areas once work is completed. We have also worked with them to ensure the safety of the children.


The subscriptions you pay and the fund raising activities we do, have ensured another stable year from a financial view point. Subscriptions have remained at £7 per month per child - which I think we can all agree is very good value. The recent increase in rent and other bills may put a strain on this and if you are in the position to be able to pay more please feel free to increase your standing order!

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, including the fantastic camp facilities.

I would like to ask all parents who haven’t already signed a Gift Aid application form to do so. 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 our Scout Group.


Become involved

Scouts is run by volunteers. If you have a bit of time to help out there are various ways you can do so.

You could join the Group Executive and become a Beaver, Cub or Scout Representative. You would be a link between the parents and the Executive and attend a meeting about once every 6 weeks on a Monday evening. We may ask you to get some feedback or liaise with the parents and occasional help out with something. If you can help, please contact me -

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 like to help out on the occasional session do let a Leader know.

My sons are no longer in the Group and I would like to hand over the Chairman's role to someone who has. Again this is not a big commitment and requires little more than chairing the meetings and occasionally providing a bit of help. It would be better for the Group if this was done by someone with children in the Cubs, Beavers or Scouts - I would of course show you the ropes and David Leitch, President, who did this role for many years, would also be on hand to support anyone. If you want to talk to me about this.

Finally I would like to thank all the Leaders, Assistant Leaders, the Executive members for all their valuable work throughout the year.

Martin Woodfield

Treasurers report


Another year of financial stabilityfor the group, with a surplus of £330 being generated.


We had a great result from the Didsbury Festival back in June 2010, which raised £858 thanks to great weather and also a well received cake stand, an increase on £693 raised in 2009. This year’s festival raised £1169. The only slight cloud has been an increase in rents to £1000 a year going forwards, however at present I am confident this can be accommodated without an increase in subscriptions in the next 12 months.


Matthew Rushton



GSL’s report


We are celebrating the 100th year since the formation of the 2nd Didsbury scout group this year. We are having a party on the 2nd July to Celebrate the occasion.


We have had a number of leader changes over the year. In the scout section Rowena is only helping on an occasional basis now and Brian has taken over as Scout leader, Simon Jermy moved from the Cub section to the scout section after the summer holidays, recently Ben White joined the scout leadership team. The Beaver and Cub changes are detailed in their reports.


We had another successful camp at Kandersteg in Switzerland last summer. We have been holding camps there every 5 years since 1990.


We held another group family camp at Sandiway camp last September, this was very poorly attended on Friday night but there were a reasonable number there by Saturday afternoon. The planned programme had to be modified until the numbers became viable. This year we will be trying a group family hike.


Ivan Paul from our scouts troop and 3 Explorers from the Didsbury Viking unit are to attend the World scout Jamboree in Sweden this summer, to represent Manchester South District.


Our HQ continues to be used by the district for Explorer , Network and appointment meetings.


I would like to thank all the exec for all their work over the year especially those involved with resolving the rent and Metrolink issues.


Keith Hampson


Beaver Scout Report


As usual we have had a very busy year. Both colonies are thriving and we still have a long waiting list of those wishing to join us. Our leadership team has changed considerably since last year. Although Fran was back with us during her last year at university she has now left to work in Cambridge. Georgina, Johan, Yvette, Edna and Helen are no longer with us but we do have a new leader in Megan Lamoon. Richard who has been a great assistance at Monday beavers is now moving on to the cub section. Sue, Helen, George and I are now very reliant on parents to help on a rota, although this is not ideal we are grateful for their assistance.


Over the year we have gained beaver activity badges in Faith, emergency aid stage 1 and many challenge badges, which go towards gaining the chief scout’s bronze award. This is the highest award a beaver scout can gain. We have joined in a number of group and district activities – visit to Cadbury’s world, Pets at Home, Beaver challenge day, Christingle service, swimming gala, bowling, Remembrance service and a day visit to cub camp. These have all been extra to the regular evening sessions. Along with the cubs many gained their International Partnership award with our support of Shelterbox. We raised over £500 towards this disaster relief charity and learned of its work in other countries caused by natural disasters.


Our current aim is for the beavers to gain their fitness challenge badge so if the weather is kind to us, which it wasn’t last year, then we hope to go to the park to carry out as many fitness and outdoor challenges as we can.


Helen Hampson

Beaver Scout Leader


Cub Scout Report


The leadership of the pack had rather a shaky start last summer as I had to take an unplanned back seat on all cub pack activities in June & July. However thanks mainly to the superb efforts of Ben Bowen, Alan Robinson, Simon Jermy & James Last the pack continued to run as smoothly as ever and the children hardly noticed my absence (it must be nice to be missed).

The annual Cub camp was held at Forest Scout Camp, Sandiway, based on the theme of I’m a celebrity get me out of here. The camp activities included numerous messy & gruesome food challenges, rafting on the lake, water bomb catapulting, and last but by no means least building their own bivvies’ and then sleeping overnight in them – thankfully the weather was warm and dry and the children slept soundly.

Three of the cubs went on a high adventure camp this year with the rest of the group to Kandersteg and had a great time climbing the Swiss mountains, sleeping overnight in mountain huts, swimming in alpine lakes, climbing rock faces and tobogganing. They all survived and gained many awards for all their daring achievements and they are keen for more.

Other activities that the pack has been involved in were a winter trip to Cadbury’s world and the Sea life centre. There was also the district swimming gala event in which we had 8 very brave and keen cubs enter and do very well in the free style relay race. Then just recently we also had the sixer and seconder camp to the Pike View Hike (PVH) in Bolton. The PVH is a 9 mile walking event with approx. 6/7 challenge bases scattered along the route, the cubs must gain as many points as possible at each base and by completing an on-going activity during the event. There were 35 cub teams participating in the PVH from all around the country and our 2 cub teams achieve and incredible 1st and 3rd place an outstanding achievement which we are all very proud of.

The Cub pack currently has 28 children on the register of which we usually get about 24 turning up to the pack meetings on a regular basis. I have set a max limit of 30 on the cub pack and expect that I will have to close the waiting list to new members joining the pack later this year as we start to gain new members from the Beaver colonies on a regular basis.

The leadership of the pack is currently running at 7 adults; however 4 are unable to attend on a regular basis due to other commitments to both work and studies. It is because of the many and varied demands upon the leadership it has proven difficult to organise a smooth flowing program over the year, although I dare say that the children will probably have not noticed. It is my intention to re-organise the program for the start of the new school year so that we can give both the children and parents a better view of upcoming activities and how they relate to badge work and ultimately the chief scouts silver award. If you would like to help in organising or delivering a fun program for the children then please let one of the cub leaders know.


Kevin Lowe (Cub scout leader)



Scout Section Report


This year has been another very successful year for the scout section. This year we had help from Simon, Ben, Rowena, Joanne, Gareth and Luke. Gareth and Joanne have finished as helpers due to work commitments. Luke has left the area and has become involved with another scout group. We would like to extend our thanks to them all. This year Rowena has stepped down as Scout leader and become an occasional helper, we would like to thank Rowena for her 5 years as scout leader and wish her every best in the future. She will still be helping but on a less frequent basis.


Last year finished with our two week camp in Kandersteg, Switzerland in August. Everyone had a great time and thoroughly enjoyed the weeks. Some of the activities we partook in included Climbing, Hill-walking, alpine walking, white water rafting, Via Feratta and a fantastic day trip to the Jungfraujoch which was facilitated by the fantastic fundraising activities before the camp.


After a short break the scouts returned and out first activity was family camp. Unfortunately the weather was not as good as previous years but good time ware still had by all.


In the New Year we had our annual Winter Camp, this year’s was at Gradbach Scout camp. We were very unlucky with the weather and had almost constant rain from Friday until Sunday. Spirits were held high with hot chocolate and sitting by the fire watching Luke slowly cook a leg of lamb.


Our next camp was District camp which was held at the beginning of June at Linnet Clough. It was mainly organised by Ben Bowen, who is an assistant Cub Leader with our cub section. All the scouts in attendance would like to thank Ben for his efforts. The Camp was a success with each scout having an opportunity to take part in a selection of the on site activities at Linnet Clough including shooting, canoeing, archery, high ropes, climbing and many more.


As well as our camp the scouts have been working towards some merit and activity badges including international and fitness. This all leads to the gold scout award. Ivan Paul has completed his gold scout award and will receive it later this year,


This year we also have a scout attending the World Jamboree in Sweden. Ivan Paul will be joining over 35,000 other scouts in Rinkaby. The theme for this jamboree will be “simply scouting”. We hope that Ivan will enjoy his time in Sweden and come away with many experiences and memories to last a lifetime.


During the year we have also taken part in variety of activities including wide games in Fletcher Moss and Didsbury Parks, Climbing and geocaching.


We are currently in the final planning stages for our annual camp which will be a joint camp with the Explorers in August. This year’s destination will be North Wales where we hope to have an eventful two weeks to kick-start next year off.


Brian Cosgrove

(Scout Leader)