Over 350 North Tameside Scouts from Droylsden and Ashton held their annual St George’s Day Parade on Sunday, under the watchful eye of the Worshipful the Civic Mayor of Tameside, Councillor Joyce Bowerman and her Consort Mr Fred Bowerman, who marched to the sounds of, St John’s Castle Droylsden Brass Band.
Organisers said, ‘It didn’t look good in the morning with the rain pouring down, but for the parade in the afternoon the sun shone brightly on the Scouts annual parade.’
The parade was led by the St George flag party of Hurst Explorer Scouts and the band, who had set off from Old Street, round Ashton market and along Stamford Street Central to arrive at the Albion Church in Ashton, for the St George’s Day service, which was led by the Vicar, Edward Inglis and the District Commissioner, Andy Morton and Assistant District Commissioner Cubs, Gill Cummins.
St George was chosen as the patron Saint of Scouting by Baden-Powell, as he felt that the St George legend set a good example of faith, courage, and perseverance for future generations.
Traditionally, the story of St George is told by a different Scout Group each year, and this year was the turn of 413th Droylsden, who chose to depict the legend by holding a football match between Dragon United and St George FC.
The match started with the teams playing football up and down the centre aisle of the church, at the end the score was even so it was down to a penalty shoot out, but this was a sword fight instead and St George FC won.
Also at this annual event, it is traditional for all Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Explorers, Networks and Leaders to renew their Scout promise, followed by awards which are presented by the District Commissioner, Andy Morton.
Those awards were given to: Derek Casey, Badge Secretary and Treasurer at 3rd Ashton, who received a Bar to the Silver Acorn for his many years of high standards and distinguished service to Scouting. To Chris Sampson, Group Scout Leader 250th to Antony Hoskin, District Cub Scout Leader, and Chris Quinn, Assistant Scout Leader- 413th who all received the Award of Merit for outstanding service to Scouting.
Long Service Awards were then presented to John Horton, Assistant Explorer Leader for 30 years, Mags Sever, Assistant Group Scout Leader 250th for 25 years, Colette Grose, Beaver Leader 413th for 15 years, Samantha Burgess, Assistant Beaver Leader 250th for 15 years, Janet Higgins Beaver, Leader 250th for 10 years, Vicky Cummins, Occasional Helper 339th for 5 years. And for finishing her Scout training, Freya Jones, Scout Leader 339th received her Wood Beads.
New people invested into Scouting were, David Brown, Scout Active Support and Shannon Schofield, Assistant Beaver Leader 413th.
To be presented later will be Wyn Fish, Appointments Chair with a Silver Acorn for distinguished service to Scouting and a 40 years’ Service Award, also Doug Pepper, Broadoak Assistant Explorer Scout Leader with his Wood Beads.
The Mayor, Joyce Bowerman said, she was amazed how many Scouts were in the parade and how she enjoyed the ‘football match’- it was so different!’
Alan Fish, from Scouts, thanked ‘Scout Active Support’ members for running the parade, conducting the service and for the much welcomed ‘brews’ at the end.
SAS members are not regular helpers, but just help now and again at events. He said, Scout Leaders do work hard for the young people in Scouting and deserve these great Awards.
If you would like to help young people in Scouting or help now and again in SAS contact firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 07931765120 or visit www.gmescouts.org.uk/join