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We are saddened to report the death, recently, of KATH ADDY who had been a staunch supporter of Scouting in Ripon & District for many years.

Those of you who knew KATH, and perhaps used her services as our Former District Badge Secretary for some 10 plus years, between 2004 and 2010, will also be saddened to hear of her passing last week. 

She was always happy to help in providing badges to busy leaders and only took on the role in answer to a plea at W.I. for someone to help the young people of the area by doing this job.

She had no prior experience of Scouting other than as a Grandmother of a keen Scout, but as a mother of six she was always willing to do anything to help youngsters.

Kath's efficiency and helpfulness in getting badges to the Groups and Units was always much appreciated by busy leaders and, although she was not currently in post in the District, she will stilll be missed by all in the District who knew her.

The Annual General Meeting of the Ripon & District Scout Council was held at Thirsk Town Hall on 25th September 2019 and was attended by over 36 leaders, helpers, administrators, honoured guests and friends of Scouting. The Meeting was opened by the County Commissioner, Mark Edwards who is at present also acting as our District Commissioner.

Mark congratulated the District on its 100th Anniversary and told the meeting that the 'Youth' numbers were down in the last Census but 'Leader' numbers were up. He asked everyone to get involvbed with the 'Just One More' campaign in the next 6 months. If every section got one more member there would be a rise of 375 extra members in the County!!

We were gathered to elect an Executive Committee to run the District's affairs, on behalf of the District Scout Council, until the same time next year and business was conducted under the watchful eye of our Honoured Guests, the Deputy Mayor & Mayoress of Ripon and our County Secretary, Mr David Forster.

Mark Edwards first job was to nominate John Lockwood as District Chairman and hand the meeting over to him. The previous minutes were then agreed, apologies given, the District Annual report circulated, and the accounts were received and considered. 

The Officers were then duly elected and approved and are: Honorary District Secretary: Mrs. Toni Vauvert - Honorary District Treasurer: Mr Peter Bardon - and Honorary District Badge Secretary: Mrs. Cath McMorland.

The next item was to nominate/elect a 'working' District Executive which consisted of the above Officers and the following members: Mike Collins, Anne Collins, Ian Bardon, John Goom, Joe Hart, Tessa Danby and David Day. ALL were approved by the meeting. Adam Dickson was then nominated and approved as the Youth Commissioner to the Executive.

Those present also approved Claire Newcombe as Honorary Auditor for another year, John McGrath as District President for a 3 year term, and Iris De Wet as the District's representative on the County Scout Council for the year.

In 'Awards and Presentations' the acting DC mentioned several long Service Awards which would be presented shortly in 'Group' settings. 

The David Burnett Community Award Silver Salver had been presented at the start of the meeting (due to his young age) to Isaac from the 6th Ripon Group for his extensive pro-social behaviour. Isaac was a Beaver Scout when nominated but has now moved up into Cub Scouts.

The evening ended with a brilliant talk (with power point show) by Jonathan Bennington and Eilis Fitzgerald, two Explorer Scouts who had recently returned from the 24th World Scout Jamboree in West Virginia, USA, after travelling there as part of the UK's 4,000 strong Contingent to a total Jamboree of 40,000 Scouts!

Finally, thanks were give to the local 'District Active Support Unit' for providing tea/coffee and biscuits and it is worth mentioning there were 15 members of DAS present in one guise or another!

At its meeting on 17 September, the County Executive Committee agreed that the County Membership Fee for 2020 (payable for all young members in all Scouting sections from Beaver Scouts to Explorer Scouts) will be £13.80 gross (£13.50 for prompt payment), an increase of 30p from 2019  - Leaders should have already received advice from The Scout Association that the 2020 UK Membership Fee will be £29.00 gross (£28.50 for prompt payment), an increase of £1.00 from last year.

Advising all District Commissioners, Mark Edwards, the County Commissioner, said: “The small increase in the County Membership Fee is to help us to develop further as a County, meet our running costs and improve our support to Districts. Some 89.9% of sections across the County are now registered with Online Scout Manager via the County Subscription and this will continue. We also aim to deliver even better activities and improve the support that we give to Districts on a wide range of issues from recruiting to training.”

Our District Executive Committee should now consider their own District Fees or Levy for next year, before advising all of our Scout Groups and Explorer Scout Units of the total fees due and payment deadlines.

So expect some important news very soon!

The Great Beaver Sleepover by Spike (Steven Spencer) - Episode 1

“To be honest I will never know why it’s called a ‘sleepover’ surely an ‘over’ is far more appropriate - certainly there was little sleep!" says Spike

Saturday 14th September, the sun shone through the light cloud, the air was warm and the time for adventure was upon us. 1st Boroughbridge Beavers descended upon Studley Roger for a truly epic event, the village hall was going to be our humble abode for the next 24 hours with everything we needed, even hot running water and an inside loo.
Beavers arrived with enormous bags stuffed full of gear (I panicked as I’m sure I said it was just for one night), parents waved frantically as they drove off trying desperately to look sad but we knew they were laughing at us thinking how mad we must be to look after their offspring while they went crazy on a night out or just a quiet evening in with a whole night of undisturbed sleep.

And so we started, raft building; the quest was to build a raft capable of surviving a wild trek down the river Skell, tricky when the whole river is awash with boulders and huge trees, inflatable devices were required and how were we going to attach them all together? Bottle corks, cocktail sticks and union flags did the trick and with another trick up our sleeves ...... but that would have to wait until later. With the carefully crafted rafts being transported to the river by special transport (the car), we headed out on foot through the tall grass in the parkland keeping an eye out for wild deer and other wild beasts; we found deep holes in the hill side never discovered before, trees with enormous holes in them where no man, and certainly no Beaver, has ever been before. 

Finally, we reached our destination where the river craft could be launched but as there wasn’t as much water as we were hoping for, we built the biggest dam ever. The river Skell would be running dry as soon as lunch was finished (which let’s be honest is far more important than anything when you’re 7). The lovingly prepared packed lunch from home was eaten as we watched butterflies and birds and little fish attempting to swim in the not-so-deep water. After tidying up, shoes and socks were off and in we went, the damming was in full swing, the Beavers (naturally) created a masterpiece of a dam the difference was about a foot (or 30cms) between the two levels. Individual rafts were handed out to the creators and carefully placed upon the water, and when all were ready the dam was breached and a torrent of water surged towards the rafts and they were thrown forward and the race was on.  Explorer Oliver took to the water to aid any craft that became stuck or beached, the Beavers ran to the first bridge to see who was going to arrive first (alas it wasn’t Spike’s so perhaps the race ought to go on a little longer - great idea), so on the race went; bits of boats floated past, and Spikes took the lead ( 😊 ) but not for long ( ☹ ), Oliver Rhodes zoomed past and won, the rest meandered down at their own pace either complete or not so complete.

Onwards we went and into Fountains Abbey. Hill rolling, I mean honestly, what enjoyment can anyone get out of finding a big hill and rolling down it, well apparently 14 Beavers found it to be one of the best activities EVER, personally I needed a sick bag, and I got my shirt dirty. Nuff said.

EPISODE 2 coming soon!!




Beaver Sleepover Episode 2!

"Den building was next, this was an experience. I’m pleased it wasn’t raining as we would have definitely gotten wet but sometimes I wish I still had the imagination of a six year old, with sticks leaning against other sticks precariously lent against a tree, with an annex on the left hand side, a cup holder (a very important accessory in any situation) tucked away in the V of a tree, and then woven between the sticks, a tarpaulin, which to be fair would of definitely stopped some of the drips. Before heading back to base we managed to squeeze an hour of kite flying in, three Jolly Roger kites flying high above Fountains Abbey, the light breeze just enough to keep them up and down and up and down again; a race ensued to keep each team’s kite up for the longest without it touching the floor.

Once we’d run out off steam, the decision to continue our walk was made and off we went, with several juice stops and wee stops and rest stops and deer watching stops (I’m sure it was all a ruse to have a sit down). Everybody was tired, I knew this because the Beavers kept telling me so, so why is it as soon as we staggered back to the village hall all the Beavers suddenly seemed to gain a whole week’s worth of pent up energy and spent the next hour causing mayhem on the play equipment. The volume went from “Spike I’m tired, my feet hurt, is it much further, what’s for tea” to “ aaaaaaarrrghh, look out Oliver, push me, oooooooo, oooowwwwww”  ….. incredible!

Finally dinner arrived, Listers Farm shop BBQed sausages and burgers in a bread bun with a choice of either beans or spaghetti, followed by smores over the open fire, absolutely perfect to end a fabulous day of adventure. But we hadn’t quite finished there, sunset was at 19.26hrs so we dashed out and watched the final few rays of sunshine disappear behind St Mary’s Church then the clouds that were lining the sky shone a stunning red and orange, truly dramatic and a fantastic end to the day. On the way back, bats fluttered about doing what bats do at that time of night, owls hooted, Beavers shouted and squealed (there’s no hope).

Now breakfast. I have never done eggy bread on a Beaver ‘over’ before and I thought I would give it a go. A loaf and a half later I feel it was quite a success, as was the fruit, toast and apple juice. Unbelievably, Beavers went and brushed their teeth shortly after breakfast, we were all lost for words, all the ‘overs’ we have done in the past it’s almost guaranteed that wash kits go home dryer than when they arrive. Now for the tidying up. To be fair the leaders did very well, it is so much easier to take the Beavers away for an hour and let the adults do it; bless them, they try but in all honesty you may as well do it yourself, it saves a lot of heartache and stress. Studley Roger are very lucky to have a village hall with play equipment in the grounds but the neighbours are very close by and on a Sunday morning at 08.00hrs I can’t imagine they were best pleased with a noise volume of 8,000,000, so another wander up the main drive towards the main gates in a hope to find some funky Fungi; unfortunately none were found which at least saved us from a trip to A&E.

AND FINALLY, the close and badge presentation. Oliver Rhodes gained his Nights Away 2 and his Bronze Chief Scout’s Award; everyone else gained their Nights Away 1, Hikes Away 2 and My Outdoor Challenge.

And a personal note to all the Leaders, adult helpers, Oliver and Chip (for lighting the BBQ) for all your help and patience, if it wasn’t for you guys the Beavers wouldn’t have had such a fantastic weekend, my life would have been so much harder and certainly not as much fun.
THANK YOU. from Spike!!

7pm Friday, 18th October 2019 at Allhallowgate Methodist Church, Victoria Grove, Ripon HG4 1LG
This will be to the usual format/indoors but for those of you that are new to the event it is a series of timed challenges completed as a patrol. Each Troop may enter as many patrols as they wish. The patrols should cover the age range for Scouts and be between 4 and 6 in number.
Each Troop will need to provide a base, run by an Adult, lasting 6 to 7 minutes for each patrol you enter. (i.e 3 patrols = 3 bases) Please try to make the bases exciting & different from last year. Each base will be marked out of 10 points and the winning patrol will be the patrol with the most points at the end of the evening. You will be allocated a table size space & a table will be available if required. Please let me know if you require access to anything else e.g. electric, and I will attempt to accommodate but cannot confirm to meet as possibilities.
The challenges will be in and around the meeting halls and set up is from 6.30pm. Start 7pm prompt, finishing at 9pm. - Please let me know the title or content of your base and your Scout numbers after your meeting on Friday 11th October 2019.
For those Groups that have not attended before it really is a great fun event and a good opportunity to meet scouts/ leaders from around the district, please try to fit it into your programme.

In particular please could you publicise that we have an area in Allhallowgate that Parents can stay whilst the event is happening (for those not helping) where tea/coffee will be available. We also have arranged a 20% reduction evening at Ripon Branch of Mountain Warehouse the same evening between 5.30 and 9pm for any Scouting families.
If you have any questions please  e-mail ROZ on rozbardon@f2s.com or call 07720 782443

Ripon & District is pleased  that we begin the new Scouting Autumn term by being able to announce a Scouting Award for a Leader in our District.

The recipient is: SIMON PITTS - Assistant Scout Leader, Hillside Scout Group.

He has been Awarded a Chief Scout’s Commendation for Good Service and we ALL congratulate Simon on this well deserved award

Every Scout Group needs an accident book to record all the mishaps that occur. That way, it is easy to spot common problems and safety issues, as well as keeping notes of any incident, should you need to refer back to them.

The 2018 Data Protection Act requires you to make sure that the personal and medical details of members are not accessible to others by having detachable pages so that incidents are recorded but then the entry is removed from the book and stored securely for future reference.

Don’t forget that if any Scout Association member has been involved in an incident which required medical intervention, be it a visit to a doctor, dentist, nurse or hospital, or if any of the emergency services have been called, it must be reported immediately as the Scout Information Centre (0845 300 1818) has to be informed in order to log the incident for insurance purposes. Usually this is done via the GSL or DC so the Group or District Team can offer support and guidance.

Don’t forget to record and act on accidental near misses that happen during Scouting activities! These could include simple incidents such as Scouts tripping over a raised piece of flooring when playing games, objects frequently dropping off a shelf in a Cub cupboard, leaders having to avoid eye injury from poles with spikes sticking out at head height, Beavers scratching their legs on a damaged waste paper bin, Explorers catching their fingers on broken seats while setting up a hall, etc.

Recognising a pattern of potential hazards could help to prevent a real accident happening!

The 4th Ripon (Methodists) Scout Group, meeting at Harrogate Road Methodist Church, have a NEW Group Scout Leader in the form of ANNIE GRAY 

It is now her job be to ensure that the Scout Group thrives and has the best systems in place to support adult volunteers and its young members, and to further develop the Group in any way she can.

Annie has been in Scouting (as a Leader) since 2010 with the 4th Ripon Group, firstly as an Occasional Helper and then in 2012 as the Beaver Scout Leader with their Beaver Scout Colony. 

Annie is also currently a 'District Active Support Unit Member' and a 'County Training Adviser' and everyone in the District welcomes her, and wishes her well in her new role as Group Scout Leader to this very active Scout Group.

What to do in the event of an incident.

The Scout Association has updated the 'Purple Card' to make it easier for leaders to know who to contact for support. If you want a copy or two (which are FREE from Scout Shops) then click HERE

There is also a good factsheet (FS320012) called 'Safety – Practical Tips'. This guidance is to help clarify some of the administrative needs surrounding your provision of 'Safer Scouting.' For a copy click HERE

Additional resources and information can be found at www.scouts.org.uk/safety.

'Safety in Scouting' should ALWAYS be in the fore-front of your mind!!


Have you found the "Find your Group here" words on the front page of this website? You can click it to go to the map. You can also access the Map via the District Information Tab.

This Map shows where ALL NINE of our Scout Groups and BOTH of our Explorer Scout Units meet.

Click on one of the blue Icons and find the address of the meeting place and on which days they meet.

It also gives a 'contact' number for members and non-members to be able to find out more about the Groups!

Find out all you need to know about Scouting
in North Yorkshire on the County Website

Did You Know?

Ripon and District Scouts operate NINE scout groups around the district:
  • ONE in Bishop Monkton
  • ONE in Boroughbridge
  • ONE in Masham
  • ONE in Knayton
  • ONE in Sowerby
  • ONE in Thirsk
  • ONE in Topcliffe
  • TWO in Ripon City itself
  • PLUS TWO District Explorer Units
  • PLUS a District Active Support Unit


THE SCOUT ASSOCIATION offers adventure and activity to almost 400,000 young people across the UK.

THE MOVEMENT is the largest co-educational youth organisation in the world, with over 28 million Members in 216 countries and territories.

Scouting has opportunities for almost ALL age ranges

Ripon and District Scouts 2019