Ilkley Brownies ... then and now

Brownies waiting for the show inside the planetarium set up at King’s Hall

Brownies trying on uniforms from the past at their centenary celebration

First published in News Wharfedale Observer: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

Almost 200 Brownies enjoyed a fun-packed celebration of their movement’s centenary at the King’s Hall on Sunday.

Leaders had spent months preparing them for it and the whole event in Ilkley took place at full volume and great pace, as was only to be expected with seven to ten-year-old girls.

The theme of the day was Past, Present and Future.

The girls travelled around in groups, taking part in activities which reflected times gone by right up to what the girls can experience today.

Trying on Brownie uniforms from early days to the current style caused great amusement. There were hoots of laughter when leaders described what they had worn – in some cases 60, 70 or, for one woman, nearly 80 – years ago.

Games from the past contrasted with the digital games played today and the Brownies became absorbed in playing Old Maid and other card games as well as Mouse, a variation of beetle – mainly games of chance but allowing the girls to realise how competitive they could be.

The traditional game of Cat’s Cradle proved very popular and in the Brownie way, girls worked well together, helping each other with the more tricky bits.

Other activities included singing and storytelling, creating clay aliens and scribbling madly on extra large sheets to create a graffiti wall, highlighting 100 years of Brownies.

The Future gave every girl the opportunity to sit quietly in the dark inside a large planetarium where they were introduced to the stars and the universe.

The tea-time break was followed by a short ceremony and another singing session, when all members renewed the Brownie promise.

The day finished with a disco led by local entertainers The Silly Brothers.

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