Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting WONEWS to 80360, or email
Otley Scout group marks its centenary year
11:54am Friday 22nd March 2013 in Local news
A Scout group founded in Otley 100 years ago will mark its centenary with the opening of a completely revamped base.
The 2nd Otley Scout Group emerged out of a scouting ‘patrol’ that was formed in 1910 by the curate at All Saints Parish Church, the Rev Granville Biggs, and was formally registered as a group in 1913.
The group moved its headquarters around various different properties in the town up until 1976, when it took over an old Mission Hall on Craven Street.
That building served as its home for more than 30 years until, after making various improvements, the leaders decided more drastic action was needed to keep it ‘fit for purpose’.
So a major modernisation scheme, involving creating a large extension, was drawn up and, thanks to a big fundraising push, £143,000 was collected to get the work done.
The fruits of that labour will be on display when the refurbished hall, named the Chevin Community Centre, is officially opened later this year.
Group public relations officer Peter Young said: “It is already providing other organisations with a meeting place, though another £17,000 is still needed to carry out further improvements to the building and the site.
“With its new headquarters, 2013 finds the 2nd Otley in good shape. All of our sections are nearly full, and with a strong team of adult leaders.”
In January, members marked the start of the centenary year by taking part in a winter camp at Gilwell Park, the Scout Association’s headquarters campsite, near London.
The group, which has taken part in every Otley Carnival parade, is planning a variety of celebratory events during the year for its Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Explorer Scouts and Leaders.
The toughest is a 100 Peaks Challenge, an attempt to climb the 100 highest hills in England.
“A centenary book is also to be published which will include a message from the Chief Scout, Bear Grylls, and photographs, press cuttings and mementoes from the last hundred years.”
The group will also be at the heart of things when Otley arranges the Wharfedale District’s St George’s Day parade on April 2, which, this year for the first time, will be held on a Saturday and involve members of all the district’s groups parading around town.
And it is planning on staging a ‘gang show’, a performance involving sketches, dances and music, in November.
For more details about the group’s 100 Peaks Challenge, and the hills involved, visit 2ndotleyscouts.org.uk.