Scouting in West Midlands

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Scouting in West Midlands is about Scouting in the official region of West Midlands. It is largely represented by the Scout Association of the United Kingdom and some Groups of traditional Scouting including the Baden-Powell Scouts' Association. The Scout Association West Midlands Region covers the same area.

There are two student associations at universities in the region, each of which is affiliated to the Student Scout and Guide Organisation (SSAGO): Birmingham University Scouts and Guides,[1] and The University of Wolverhampton Student Scout & Guide Organisation.[2]

History of Scouting in West Midlands[edit]

The 5th Wolverhampton, 24th Birmingham/1st Sparkhill, 13th Stoke-on-Trent & Newcastle (1st Alsager), and 84th Birmingham (Somerset Road Methodist Wesleyan) Scout Groups claim to have started in 1908.[3]

The 9th World Scout Jamboree, celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Scouting was held at Sutton Park, Birmingham.[4] There were 30,000 participants. It was combined with the 6th World Rover Moot with 3,500 participants and the 2nd World Scout Indaba.

The Scout Association Counties[edit]

The Scout Association in West Midlands is administered through eight Scout Counties,

Birmingham Scout County[edit]

Map of England highlighting the location of Birmingham

Birmingham Scout County is a Scout County of the Scout Association of the United Kingdom. It is concurrent with the City of Birmingham, and provides Scouting opportunities for young people and adults in the area.[5]

Muslim Scouts from Birmingham were among those from the UK on the first ever official trip to Mecca for the Hajj in January 2006.[6] The first Muslim Scout Group in Birmingham was formed in 2005.[7]

The County has 98 Scout Groups and some Explorer Scout Units, grouped into Districts, providing Scouting for young people from the age of 6 and up. The County also manages the Scout Network, which is the programme section for 18- to 25-year-olds, consists of a number of local Scout Networks.

The County is currently divided into six Scout Districts:

  • Cole Valley South
  • Rea Valley[8]
  • Spitfire
  • Sutton Coldfield East[9]
  • Sutton Coldfield West
  • Tame Valley

City of Coventry Scout County[edit]

Map of England highlighting the location of Coventry

City of Coventry Scout County is a Scout County of the Scout Association of the United Kingdom. It is concurrent with the city of Coventry, and provides Scouting opportunities for young people and adults in the area.[10]

The Districts each divide into a number Scout Groups and Explorer Scout Units, providing Scouting for young people from the age of 6 and up. The County also manages the Scout Network, consisting of a number of Local Scout Networks, which is the programme section for 18- to 25-year-olds.

The County is currently divided into three Scout Districts:

  • Bablake
  • Caludon
  • Charterhouse

The Coventry Saracens Rugby Football Club was originally formed in 1966 from the 13th Coventry Scouts.[11]

13th City of Coventry Scout Marching Band[edit]

The 13th City of Coventry Scout Marching Band was founded in 1929. Since then it has had 34 Royal performances, appearing in events and venues such as Westminster Abbey, Windsor Castle, St Paul's Cathedral, the Royal Tournament, Wembley Stadium, Royal Albert Hall, Royal Festival Hall, London's Guild Hall, The Lord Mayor's Show, Horse Guards Parade, Coventry Cathedral, the Spalding Flower Parade, London's Easter Parade, and the Jersey Battle of Flowers. They have been National Scout Supreme Champions nine times in ten years.[12][13]

Hereford and Worcester Scout County[edit]

Hereford and Worcester Scout County is a Scout County of the Scout Association in the United Kingdom, covering the counties of Herefordshire and Worcestershire.[14]

The County is divided into ten districts:[15]

Shropshire Scout County[edit]

Shropshire Scout County is a part of the Scout Association in the United Kingdom, covering the County of Shropshire.[23]

The County is divided into three districts:[24]

  • Shropshire Borders District
  • Shropshire Severn and Teme District
  • Tern Valley District[25]

The 100th anniversary of Scouting was celebrated in Shropshire on top of the Wrekin, near their County Camp Site, and in Ironbridge.[26]

Staffordshire Scout County[edit]

Staffordshire Scout County is a Scout County of the Scout Association of the United Kingdom. It is concurrent with the political county of Staffordshire.[27]

The County is divided into eleven districts:[28]

  • Moorlands District
  • Potteries North District
  • Newcastle District
  • Three Towns District
  • Uttoxeter District
  • Stone District
  • Stafford District
  • Burton District
  • Cannock District
  • Lichfield District
  • Tamworth District

Warwickshire Scout County[edit]

Warwickshire Scout County is a Scout County of the Scout Association of the United Kingdom. It is concurrent with the political county of Warwickshire.[29]

The County is divided into eight Districts:

  • Atherstone
  • Nuneaton
  • Kenilworth
  • Leamington
  • Rugby
  • Stratford
  • Warwick
  • West Warwickshire

Solihull Scout County[edit]

Solihull Scout County is a Scout county of the Scout Association in the United Kingdom, and covers an area similar to the Metropolitan Borough of Solihull.[30]

Following a reorganisation in 2004, the Scout county now has two districts:

  • Blythe Scout District
  • Cole Scout District

West Mercia Scout County[edit]

West Mercia Scout County is a Scout county of the Scout Association in the United Kingdom, and covers the Boroughs of Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton. [31]

The County is divided into Ten Districts:

  • Dudley
  • Halesowen
  • Stourbridge[32]
  • Sandwell
  • Walsall
  • Walsall North[33]
  • Wolverhampton North
  • Wolverhampton South
  • Wolverhampton East
  • Wolverhampton West

Halesowen Scout Band[edit]

The Halesowen Scout Band

Founded: 1975
Based: Halesowen,  United Kingdom
Contesting Class: National
Members of: The Scout Association, TYMBA
Band Master: Paul Wong

The Halesowen Scout Band are a marching band from Halesowen in the West Midlands, England. They were formed in 1975 as a district Scout band, which means that their members are drawn up from different Scout groups throughout the Halesowen district.[34]

The band plays an important role in the community of Halesowen and surrounding areas which includes leading parades on Remembrance Sunday, St George's Day, Guides Thinking Day, opening of the Christmas lights, and various fêtes and carnivals throughout the year.

They are members of TYMBA and compete in the National Class. They attend competitions throughout the year which are organised by other members of TYMBA (they also host a TYMBA contest themselves at Himley Hall).

Over the past few years, the band has performed at venues in places such as France, Alton Towers, Wembley Stadium and Arena, the Black Country Living Museum, and at the Birmingham International Tattoo alongside the Grenadier Guards and The Royal Marines.

In April 2007, the band, joined by members of Spen Valley and Northampton, played at the St Georges Day Parade at Windsor Castle and was reviewed by Her Majesty The Queen.



The Scout Association County has a campsite at Blackwell Court and one maintained by the Pikes Pool Management Committee, near Blackwell Court. The site covers 52 acres (210,000 m2) of woodland and open fields, and features a large body of water allowing a number of activities including sailing, kayaking and raft building. The site also offers archery and air rifle activities, as well as pioneering, forester and conservation courses.[35][36]

City of Coventry[edit]

Rough Close Outdoor Centre is the City of Coventry Scout Association County's campsite, located outside of the city of Coventry, about 1-mile (1.6 km) west of Tile Hill Village.[37] The Rough Close site was purchased in 1946, for £1000.[38]

The site offers a number of fields and pitches, allowing it to host anything from small patrol camps to County events. There are a number of buildings on the site, offering indoor accommodation and dining facilities, as well as some training facilities. The centre provides activities including archery, air rifle shooting, climbing, pioneering and orienteering.

Roy Morris, former President of the 4th Coventry Scout Group, who joined the Scout movement in 1942, was awarded the Silver Wolf Award, the highest award of the Scout Association, for raising £85,000 for Rough Close in 2008.[39]

Hereford and Worcester[edit]

The Hereford and Worcester Scout Association County Camping and Activity Centre is Kinver Scout Camp.[40] Rhydd Covert is owned and run by Kidderminster District.[41] The Malverns District own a campsite at Warren Oak. The site is 3 miles (5 km) NNW of the market town of Ledbury in Herefordshire, just east of the B4214.[42]


Wrekin Scout Camp, owned by the Shropshire Scout Association County, goes back to before 1951 when a Shropshire Rotary Club built a chapel on the site.[43][44]


The Staffordshire Scout Association County has access to a number of camp sites:[45]

  • Barnswood Camp Site
  • Beaudesert Camp Site
  • Consall Scout Camp, situated between Leek and Cheadle.[46]
  • Kibblestone International Scout Camp (also home to the Country Office)
  • Rangemore Camp Site
  • Sherratts Wood Camp Site (Stafford District site)


Broadwater is the Warwickshire Scout Association County's Activity Centre [47]


West Mercia[edit]

There are two camp sites in West Mercia:

  • Beaudesert Park Scout & Guide Camp, operated by a registered charity, the Beaudesert Trust. It is situated on the edge of Cannock Chase.[48]
  • Patshull Activity Centre.[49]

Gang Shows[edit]

There are several Scout Shows, known as Gang Shows in the region:

  • East Birmingham Gang Show. Spitfire Scout District runs an annual Gang Show at Sheldon Heath Community Arts College in Sheldon.[50]
  • Coventry Scout Gang Show, started in the 1960s.[51]
  • Handsworth Gang Show, started in 1953.[52]
  • Hereford Gang Show. Runs every other year at The Courtyard Hereford.[53]
  • Kenilworth Gang Show, started in 1971.[54]
  • Kidderminster & Stourport Gang Show.[55]
  • Nuneaton Gang Show.[56]
  • Solihull Gang Show, started in 1982. Although it has existed unofficially for some time, after 25 years of Solihull Gang Show,[57] 2007 saw the formation of the Solihull Gangshow Scout Fellowship, of which the stilt instruction/performance group Stiff and Stilted are a part.[58][59][60]
  • Stafford Gang Show - started as Stafford Scout Show in 1998[citation needed]
  • Stoke-on-Trent & Newcastle Division's Gang Show - started in 1934.[citation needed]
  • Stone Gang Show - started in 1967 celebrating 40 Years in 2007.[61]
  • Sutton Coldfield Gang Show, started in 1968. Runs a Show every 2 years in February at Bishop Vesey's Grammar School.[citation needed]
  • Warwickshire Gang Show (WAGS), started in 1972.[62]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Birmingham University Scouts and Guides
  2. ^ The University of Wolverhampton Student Scout & Guide Organisation
  3. ^ List of Scout Groups The First Troops
  4. ^ Milestones of World scouting Archived 2013-05-30 at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ Birmingham Scouts Website
  6. ^ BBC report on Hajj visit
  7. ^ BBC report on first Muslim Group
  8. ^ Rea Valley
  9. ^ Sutton Coldfield East
  10. ^ City of Coventy Scouts
  11. ^ History of Coventry Saracens RFC
  12. ^ 13th City of Coventry Scout Marching Band
  13. ^ History of 13th City of Coventry Scout Marching Band
  14. ^ Hereford and Worcester Scout County
  15. ^ Districts in the Scout County of Hereford and Worcester
  16. ^ Bromsgrove District Scouts
  17. ^ Kidderminster District Scouts
  18. ^ Redditch District Scouts
  19. ^ Severn and Teme District Scouts
  20. ^ South Marches District Scouts
  21. ^ The Malverns District Scouts
  22. ^ Worcester District Scouts
  23. ^ Shropshire Scout County
  24. ^ Shropshire Scouts Online
  25. ^ Tern Valley District
  26. ^ BBC - Scouts celebrate 100 years
  27. ^ Staffordshire Scouts
  28. ^ Staffordshire Scout County Districts
  29. ^ Warwickshire Scout County
  30. ^ Solihull Scout County website
  31. ^ West Mercia Scout County
  32. ^ Stourbidge District
  33. ^ Walsall North District
  34. ^ Halesowen Scout Band
  35. ^ Pikes Pool Campsite and Water Activities Centre
  36. ^ Blackwell Court Camp Site
  37. ^ Rough Close Outdoor Centre
  38. ^ Dimmer, Sam (27 June 2011). "Scouts celebrate 65th birthday of Coventry's Rough Close campsite". Coventry Telegraph. Retrieved 31 October 2016. 
  39. ^ "Scouting stalwart earns top honour". Coventry Telegraph. 2 May 2008. Retrieved 31 October 2016. 
  40. ^ Kinver Scout Camp
  41. ^ Rhydd Covert Camp
  42. ^ Warren Oak Campsite
  43. ^ Scoutbase - Scout Camps, Wrekin
  44. ^ The Rotary Club of Wellington, Shropshire
  45. ^ Staffordshire Scout County Camp Sites
  46. ^ Consall Scout Camp
  47. ^ Broadwater Activity Centre
  48. ^ Beaudesert Park
  49. ^ Patshull Activity Centre
  50. ^ East Birmingham Gang Show
  51. ^ City of Coventry Scout Gang Show
  52. ^ Story of Handsworth Gang Show
  53. ^ Hereford Gang Show
  54. ^ Kenilworth Gang Show
  55. ^ Kidderminster & Stourport Gang Show
  56. ^ Nuneaton Gang Show
  57. ^ "Solihull Scout Times - June 2006" (PDF). Solihull Scout Times. June 2006. Retrieved 2007-08-28. 
  58. ^ Stiff and Stilted
  59. ^ Solihull Gangshow website
  60. ^ Solihull Scout Guide Gang Show
  61. ^ Stone Gang Show
  62. ^ WAGS Gang Show

External links[edit]