Around 200 people packed out the Diss Corn Exchange on Saturday 28th March to listen to a throughly exceptional talk by Simon Weston, Falkland’s War Veteran. Thank you to everyone who supported the event, the sponsors and particularly to Dawn and Chris Carman-Jones for pulling the whole event together. We raised over £1000 for the HQ development fund.
The process for submitting Planning Application continues, the very well attended Public Meeting at Sancroft Hall on February 17th being another stage completed at the request of Mid Suffolk District Council (MSDC). The display of site plans and justification for the new HQ site and building attracted a steady stream of visitors all afternoon prior to the meeting and the overall support for Scouts and the the proposed HQ was evident from the many comments made during and after the meeting. The landowner, Mr George Barrett, is now waiting for MSDC to provide details of number and type of housing required before submitting Planning Application on his own and 1st Fressingfield Scouts’ behalf. This is a development that has the potential for providing a wonderful working base for such an active and growing Scout Group for many decades to come, and we hope that those responsible for considering and granting Planning Approval at MSDC and Parish Council will recognise the social and environmental benefits that this proposal offers, particularly for the youngsters in our rural communities.
Michael Pickstock – Group Executive Chairman
Congratulations and thank you to the members of the Pioneer Scout Troop led by ASL Michael Knights who supported the Hoxne clean up – a huge amount of hedgerow clutter and litter was collected. We have received some glowing feedback from the Hoxne Parish Council on the conduct and enthusiasm of the scouts that turned out.
1st Fressingfield Beavers led by Lucy Davies, recently attended the District Jurassic day where they met animals (no dinosaurs!), made fossils, built a volcano and much more – they had loads of fun and brought science to life.
The Scout Leadership team are working hard week in week out to ensure that we provide the best quality, exciting and safe scouting we can for our members. All our leaders are volunteers – but to provide activities, keep equipment up to do date, not to mention the huge challenge of securing our new HQ and activity centre we need money! To allow us to budget and plan effectively we rely on the subscription fee of £10 per month. We should raise between £1000 and £1400 per month in fees – but with some members STILL paying the old £7.50 rate (this was changed to £10 almost 18 months ago) and some members not contributing at all we have a monthly ”missing” amount in the region of £400 per month – that’s a whopping £4800 per year!
While we recognise that some families may have financial pressures and the Scout Group is not in the business of refusing scouting to those who are unable to afford it, we do believe that the membership subscription is value for money. The Group could do much more if we were at the 100% fees received level. Please check your standing order is it at the right amount and if you are yet to pay fees please contact Emma our Treasurer as soon as possible. firstname.lastname@example.org
The National Scout Association has identified the work of 1st Fressingfield Scout Group and the Waveney Valley Partnership of Schools as best practice for how formal (school) and non-formal (scouts) education can work together effectively to benefit young people. We will be hosting a visit on the 1st May of a researcher from Gilwell Park (Scout Headquarters) who will be visiting the schools and the scout group. Our opportunity to show off the excellent work that we do together. This is on the back of an article in the Guardian newspaper, written by the Chief Scout Gear Grylls who is encouraging developments like our own. If we impress on the 1st May – we could get a visit from the Bear.
On Sunday the 26th April, Scout Groups from across Southern Norfolk District will be meeting in Attleborough for a Parade and Service to celebrate England’s Patron Saint. This is a significant event in the scouting calendar and everyone is encouraged to attend. Section leaders will soon be selecting the standard (flag) bearers for the Group. The parade will lead through the streets of Attleborough ending up at the Parish Church, starting at 3pm. We will be running both minibuses leaving Fressingfield at 2pm – places are limited so please book
quickly. We also hope that parents will join in the celebration and make their own way to Attleborough.
We will again be holding our Group Camp at Thorpe Woodlands near Thetford. The dates are 22-24th May and we are expecting around 100 members of the Scout Group to attend. We are very aware of the financial pressures that families are facing and we have been able to reduce the cost of Group Camp from £70 in 2014 to £55 for the two night camp. Beaver rate (Sat & Sun) has been reduced from £45 to £30.
Places have almost been filled, please book your place as soon as possible.
1st Fressingfield Scouts have committed to support this years Race-for-Life in Norwich, by providing ‘cheer station’ volunteers – members of the scout group will be on hand around the course supporting the ladies on their 10km race. We will be handing out drinks, space blankets, as well as (with the support of foam hands, balloons and whistles) cheering and urging the racers on.
And the winners are…
1st Fressingfield. Congratulations to the 15 strong swimming team from 1st Fressingfield that swept the board at the District Swimming Gala – with a near perfect score and winning all but one race we won the trophy for the third time. The team also secured 1st and 3rd in the Raft push race winning the challenge shield as well. It was a great evening at Wymondham and thank you for the parents and friends that came along to support us.
We are continuing to collect clothes, shoes, bags, belts and bedding for Phil-the-Bag. Please bring your donations to the Scout HQ as you bring your young people to their section meetings. Please do ask your neighbours, families and friends for their donations too. We have collection bags available from the office. Please contact Dawn on email@example.com if you have any questions. Many thanks for your continued support.
We have been accepted by AVIVA for a Community Grant and we have applied for up to £25 000 – this will be used to develop activities at the new HQ. As we have to identify exactly what the the money would be used for it will be used to develop the outdoor environment to include: The wildlife area & pond, construction of the St George’s outdoor Chapel and rose garden and to install a trim trail (type of assault course). The grant is awarded based on the number of online votes the different projects get – we need to get as many votes as possible – please be ready to click for us when the time come and circulate the ‘like’ request to everyone you know. More details to follow.
Paula and two boys from Mothers’ Mercy Home in Nairobi, Kenya will be joining us for two weeks in the summer. Our Scout Group has a long standing relationship with the orphanage and this visit is part of our ongoing exchange programme – extending the hand of friendship across two continents. We are very excited to welcome them to Suffolk in July.
There is a vacancy for an
ADVENTURE SCOUT parent representative on our board of Trustees – while this is an important role the tasks are not too time consuming the Executive meets around 6 times a year and is responsible for setting our budget, supporting our uniformed leaders, ensuring that we provide safe and exciting opportunities and to set Group policies. If you have a child currently attending the Adventure Scout Troop you are eligible to apply. You will require the necessary safeguarding checks – if you are interested please discuss with Colin Clarke (Adventurers Scout Leader).
A little further into the distance is the senior section summer camp; open to Networkers, Explorers and Scouts – we will be spending around a week (24-30 July) at Great Tower Scout Activity Centre.
Based in the Lake District we will be exploring the hills and Lakes. Hill walking and rock climbing (on real rock faces) as well as taking to the water …. sailing and for older attendees Ghyll scrambling (pictured).
More details and bookings will be taken from April 2015. There are 40 places only available.