Sea Scout

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Sea Scouting
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Sea Scouts are a part of the Scout movement, with a particular emphasis on boating and other water-based activities on the sea, rivers or lakes (canoeing, rafting, scuba, sailboarding). Sea Scouts can provide a chance to sail, cruise on boats, learn navigation, learn how to work on engines and compete in regattas. Sea Scouts often have distinctive uniforms. In some countries or Scout organizations, Sea Scouting is a program just for older Scouts.


A coast-watching Sea Scout signals to a British warship during the First World War.
A demonstration by Netherlands Sea Scouts at the 11th World Scout Jamboree in Greece, 1963.
US Sea Scout leaders in 2013

One of the earliest records of "Sea Scouts" is in Chums magazine which refers to "Sea Scouts" as early as July 1909.[1] These Sea Scouts were part of the Chums Scouts and British Boy Scouts.[citation needed]

Also in the Chums magazine, the British Boys Naval Brigade, later National Naval Cadets, were subtitled 'Scouts of the Sea' from the 14 July 1909 edition and, from the 28 July 1909 edition, 'Sea Scouts of the Empire'.[2] The British Boy Scouts and an original company of The National Naval Cadets were both headquartered in Battersea, London and the 'boys' weekly newspaper Chums was the official journal of both. The National Naval Cadets affiliated with the British Boy Scouts as part of its Sea Scouts.[citation needed]

Later, Sea Scouts were introduced within the Baden-Powell Boy Scouts organization. In the first edition of Scouting for Boys, Baden-Powell mentioned that "A Scout should be able to manage a boat, to bring it properly alongside a ship or pier....". In December 1908, the first Seamanship badge was issued as one of the first 'Efficiency' badges.[3] A camp for Scouts was held at Bucklers Hard, Hampshire in August 1909 at which boating activities were a focus. In 1911, Baden-Powell wrote the booklet Sea Scouting for Boys. Warington Baden-Powell[4] wrote Sea Scouting and Seamanship for Boys in 1912, with a foreword by Robert Baden-Powell. A special uniform for Sea Scouts was approved in 1910 and, in 1912, the name "Sea Scouts" was officially adopted within Baden-Powell's Boy Scouts Association.[5]

Sea Scouting found its way to the rest of the world. In many organizations a Sea Scout troop or group has a special name, in the Boy Scouts of America it is called a ship.[citation needed]

Around the world[edit]

Country Membership Troops/Groups Age group See also
Argentina 2 6-21
Australia 92 6–26
Austria 4 10–20 Pfadfinder und Pfadfinderinnen Österreichs
Bangladesh 30 14–25 [1]
Belgium 3,100 27 6–18
Brazil 5.315 102 6.5–21 [2]
Bulgaria at least 1
Canada 25 11–26 [3]
Croatia 7
Cyprus 9
Czech Republic 4016 166 above 5 Czech Sea Scouts Headquarters[6]
Denmark 3,800
Egypt [4]
Finland[7] 9,000 100 Above 7
France 2,500
Germany 12
Gibraltar 1
Greece 4,000 above 7 Soma Hellinon Proskopon (Boy Scouts)
Soma Hellinikou Odigismou (co-ed Guides)
Hong Kong 11–20
Hungary 6 above 12
Iceland 1
India 500 4 12–26
Indonesia 4 14-20 Satuan Karya (Saka) Bahari
Ireland[8] 3,944 29 6–26 Sea Scouts (Scouting Ireland)
Israel[9] 1,000 8 10–18 Israel Sea Scouts Website
Italy 500 30
Latvia 50 1 7–18
Lithuania 300 13 8–29 Lithuanian Scouting Sea Scouts [5]
Malaysia at least 20 12–19
Monaco 1
Netherlands[10] 2,167 300 7–11 Scouting Nederland
5,401 10–15
1,395 14–17
2,000 17–23
New Zealand 2,000 60 10–15.5 Sea Scouts New Zealand
Norway 2,000 26 6-25
Pakistan 200
Poland (01-01-2007) 295 (159g+136b) 175 6–9
669 (366g+303b) 10–12
910 (442g+351b) 13–15
735 (392f+343m) 16–18
225 (89f+163m) 19–25
~475 leaders
Philippines 10–17
Pitcairn Island 1
Portugal 600 19 6–22
Romania 100 2
Singapore 12–24 Singapore Sea Scouts
Slovakia 6 Vodný skauti
South Africa[11] 20 11–18
Spain 2
Sweden 7,000 80 8-25
Switzerland[12] 130 1 >6 Pfadibewegung Schweiz
Trinidad and Tobago 1893 18 11–21
United Kingdom 10,000 401 10–14 Sea Scouts (The Scout Association)
United States 15,000 13–21 Sea Scouts (Boy Scouts of America)
Girl Scouts of the USA

Eurosea seminars[edit]

A sailboat of Sea Scouts of Greece sailing from Zea marina

Eurosea is the seminar for Sea Scouting/Guiding in the European Scout Region which take place every two or three years. The aims and objectives are to enable national associations to share ideas and experiences on how to develop Sea Scouting/Guiding or water-based programs in general. Participants are members of national or regional teams responsible for Sea Scouting/Guiding or developing water-based programs and representatives from associations interested in introducing Sea Scouting/Guiding.

Loss of vessels[edit]

  • 4 August 1912 – eight Boy Scouts from the 2nd Walworth (Dulwich Mission)[15] group and another boy drowned in capsize of a cutter off Leysdown, Kent, England. The boat was carrying twenty-three Scouts from Erith to a camp at Leysdown.
  • 27 October 1913 – three Scouts and an assistant leader drowned and eleven Scouts were saved when the ketch Mirror was hit by the steamer Hogarth (1231 tons) while tacking across the river. Mirror had been a gift of the Daily Mirror newspaper to the Scouts.[16]
  • In August 1950 – all ten Scouts on board were killed when the Wangle III, owned by 1st Mortlake Sea Scouts was lost on a return voyage from France.[5][17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Chums, vd. e.g. 14 July 1909 p879, 21 July 1909 p888, 28 July 1909 p921.
  2. ^ "Chums". Archived from the original on 2012-02-14. Retrieved 2013-05-05.
  3. ^ "The Early History of Sea Scouting" (PDF). "Johnny" Walker's Scouting Milestones pages. April 3, 2012. pp. 1–10. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 4, 2016.
  4. ^ Warington Baden-Powell, K.C., an Admiralty lawyer, sailor, inventor of canoe sailing and author of Canoe Travelling: Log of a Cruise on the Baltic, and Practical Hints on Building and Fitting Canoes London, Smith, Elder, 1871.
  5. ^ a b Masini, Roy (2007). "A Short History of Sea Scouting in the United Kingdom". Retrieved 2009-01-17.
  6. ^ Czech Sea Scouts Headquarters. "Czech Sea Scouts Headquarters (HKVS)".
  7. ^ "Sea guiding and scouting". Archived from the original on 2010-11-26. Retrieved 2010-09-28.
  8. ^ "Groups | Sea Scouting | Ireland".
  9. ^ Sea Scouting: Sea Scouting in Israel
  10. ^ "Presentation Dutch Seascouts Eurosea 8 Seminar" (powerpoint). Retrieved 2007-03-05.
  11. ^ SouthAfrica
  12. ^ "Unikum unter den Schweizer Pfadfindern feiert Jubiläum" (in German). Neue Zürcher Zeitung. 2008-03-31. Retrieved 2008-04-01.
  13. ^ "The New Look of the European Seascouting Website – Sea Scouting". Retrieved 2017-11-12.
  14. ^ "EUROSEA 2020 GREECE". Sea scouting in Europe. Retrieved 15 September 2019.
  15. ^ "Boy Scouts Gazette". The Sunday Times. Sydney. 29 December 1912. p. 28. Retrieved 25 January 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
  16. ^ "Four Sea Scouts Drowned". Geelong Advertiser. Vic. 28 October 1913. p. 3. Retrieved 25 January 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
  17. ^ GB Board of Trade; SCC Libraries (1951-03-19). "Wreck report for 'Wangle III', 1951". Archived from the original on July 21, 2011.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  18. ^ "Sea Scout Ship Odyssey".

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]