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December 2016

n i g n i Scout

inside this month...

The DC signs off Gang Show prepares for 2017 Cubs’ 100th birthday party District Archery team Scout Post is here District Carol Concert

d a e h n e k r i B


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The time for Christmas Post is almost upon us and stamps are on sale now. There are a number of points I would like to update you about. 1. This year no sales shops are listed on the hand bills They are shown on the Scout Post website 2. A small number of Advertising Posters have been displayed at some bus stops and a few other locations within Wirral 3. Stamp Sales at ASDA Arrowe Park. There have been difficulties with these this year as without warning permission to sell our stamps there has been withdrawn. At the time of writing the situation has not been resolved but it will have a big impact on the stamp sales for the 265th Group.

December 5th to 9th December 10th & 11th December 12 th to 14th December 14th December 15th December 17th & 18th January 6th

4. It has been decided that no presentation evening will be held in February 2017. Cheques will be distributed to Groups and Charities by Post The timetable is given below. Help which anyone can give at the District Sort would be most welcome. Join us at McLachlan Hall on any of the evenings listed below up to Wed Dec 14th. Tea and coffee will be provided. Ken Richards

Sorting Office open McLachlan Hall First Delivery by Groups Sorting Office open McLachlan Hall Last time for posting Mis-sorts evening McLachlan Hall Final Delivery by Groups

6.30pm 6.30pm Midday 7,30pm

All unsold stamps to be returned, monies to be balanced and paid into account and details sent to Jane Whatling


Hello and thank you for reading the final issue of

Contact in 2016 in what has been a very busy year for

Scouting in Birkenhead. I’m delighted to say that the response from my plea for more pictures and news about what your groups have been up to has been excellent. This month I can share with you pictures from the goings on of more than half of the groups in the District. Please keep sending them through for publication in the next issue. This month we say thank you to our departing District Commissioner Paul Coleman. I’m delighted that Paul will be

Contact is published by

Birkenhead District Scout Council 15 Balls Road, Oxton, Wirral CH43 5RF Compiled by: Paul Ellis Tel: 07720 555885 Please email content to : SMO-MediaTeam@

continuing his volunteering in the District and I’m sure that everyone involved in Birkenhead will want to thank him for his hard work over the past five years - and am sure we haven’t seen the last of him! In this issue we bring you an update on all of the hard work that is going on at Gang Show rehearsals. Everyone, from the cast to the producers, the stage crew and those who work behind the scenes are dedication their evenings and weekends to bring us another great show in 2017 - and then take it to the Isle of Man a week later. Please support them in any way you can. Talking of hard work, Scout Post is here and is one of my favourite Scouting activities of

the year. Let’s hope the weather is kind to all of our young people and their families who will be out delivering over the two weekends later this month. Details of how you can help at the main sort are on page 2. There’s updates from ADC Scouts and Cubs including details from Matt about the Cubs100 birthday party later this month. Also news of how you can sign up your sections onto the new Archery nights that are now being offered by our District team. I hope you enjoy reading this issue and that you and your families have a lovely Christmas and New Year. Paul Ellis

T C I R T S I D D A E H N E K BI R CAROL CONCERT Come and join us on Wednesday 7th December at 6.30pm St Saviours Church, Bidston Road, Prenton CH43 2JZ A service of Nativity, Readings, Carols and Prayers Suitable for all ages The collection taken on the night will be given to Change A Childs Life


Page 2 Scout Post Pages 4 & 5 District Commissioner Page 6 News from Cubs Page 7 Scouts Page 8 Gang Show 2017

Page 9 Explorers Page 10 Bear’s Grill Page 11 Around the District Pages 12-14 Group News Page 15 District Archery

The DC’s Ramblings


Greetings you all,


I know that this time of year is really busy for you all, with trying to find time for Christmas shopping, parties, spending time with the family and then we go and throw Scout Post right into the middle of it! I am sure that Scout Post would be a lot easier to manage in June, with the warmer weather, the light evenings etc. Just got to convince half of the population of the Wirral to post their cards really early next year! Anyway enough of that! I am finding it quite hard to write this, my last piece to you all as DC, I have loved every minute of the last five years as Lead Volunteer for Birkenhead and I feel that I have achieved most, if not quite all, of what I hoped to do whilst in the role. We have embraced the Vision for 2018 and are a lot closer to it than we were when we started trying to come to terms with what it meant to us. As a District we have continued to grow, year by year, with new groups at the 1st Beechwood, a new Explorer Unit with Viking and a relaunched one at Wizard. We have opened new sections at the 21st and the 2nd and a number of groups have enjoyed a ‘rebirth’ under a new and re-invigorated leadership team.

Birkenhead Scouts have always been good at looking outside and involving our members in the wider community, but now we are getting better at shouting out about it! We have taken big steps towards understanding ‘Inclusivity’ and are becoming better at welcoming everyone into our fantastic movement. We have played a big part in Merseyside County’s Youth Engagement Programme, in order to ensure our young people understand how to make their voices heard and how they can influence their own journey through Scouting. Over the past five years we have continued to move forwards, never standing still, constantly striving to better ourselves, to find new and better ways of doing things, take ‘Contact’ for example, just look at the difference in our District Newsletter, from a photocopied booklet, to an all singing all dancing web based publication with full colour and links to all manner of social media outlets. It is now forwarded, at the click of a button, to ex-members, family, friends and supporters all over the world, so everyone can share in the adventures going on right here in Birkenhead!


Five and a half years ago, when I took over as DC, my predecessor, Sue Taylor, presented me with a small engraved cup, the ‘Poison Chalice’ which she was handing to me! Although I have to agree, there have been moments when the role has posed its challenges and difficult decisions have to be made, I have decided not to pass the ‘poison chalice’ on to my successor, instead I will be passing on a skip full of pride, a wheelbarrow full of fantastic memories and the best District in the County, full of the best leaders and my best friends! But I won’t be going too far away, I am staying in the District as a volunteer, as an Explorer Leader with Wizard, so I will still be around. My Thanks to all of you, for making my job as DC both enjoyable and memorable. I hope to see as many of you as possible at the District Carol Service on the 7th December at St Saviours and over the next few weeks at Christmas Post Sort. Have a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

From Joan Quaile, District Chair I have known Paul since he was an eight year old Cub Scout in my Pack at the 25th. As you are aware he is part of a Scouting family and has grown up with scouting values and has exhibited those throughout his life. It used to be quite strange when I was walking through Liverpool to hear a clip clop behind and a voice calling out ‘hi Akela’. Paul has kept his ties with the 25th Group and we have all watched him taking on many roles both Group and District.

Once he retired from Merseyside Police he found the time to take on the role of DC and over the last six years has given a great deal of time and energy to take the District forward. I am sure that Paul will not neglect Birkenhead over the next few years, it’s in his blood! It has been a pleasure working with him and on behalf of the Executive I would like to wish him well in his new job as Development Officer working in Merseyside County.

Hello Everyone, This is my last article in Contact for 2016 and it doesn’t seem that long ago it was my first article. Of course this year has been a massive year for the Cub section with us becoming 100 years old! To celebrate lots of Cub packs have been holding Cubs 100 camps, joining in with county, region and national celebrations at Blackpool, Fundays, Wingding100 and more trips to Blackpool! However for the finale of all finales we are holding our own Birthday Party for all Cubs to attend! This will be the Birthday Party of all birthday parties to remember of year of celebration (which follows our year of adventure) - as all the best people we managed to spread our Birthday over two whole years! And hopefully the adventure, challenge and of course fun of Cub scouting will continue for many years to come.

To... our Birthday Party it is being held on Friday 16th December at Trinity with Palm Grove Church Hall and starts at 18:30 until 20:30 .

In January we will be advertising the District Cub Scout Leader roles for Development and Programme - so if you think you would be ingested let me know and I can give you more details.

So I’m hoping to see loads of leaders and Cubs there (it’s £5 per Cub - Leaers in ratio are free but it’s £5 for ever leader over the ratio) there will be food, cake, party games, Christmas presents and a disco!

Group leaders need to make sure they bring enough adults to stay in We’ve also got our district Carol service coming up which ratio and of course the children are will hopefully be well supported too! your responsibility at all times.

It was suggested at the last district leaders meeting that the cub leaders get together for a social so again if you have any ideas or suggestions drop me a line and we will get the ball rolling to have a cub leaders social!

Can’t wait to celebrate the end of our Birthday celebrations with you Finally, please accept my warmest wishes to you and your all and of our Cubs. families to have a truly wonderful Christmas and a very happy new year!

Thanks for all your continued hard work and support to the district and Cub section throughout 2016 and here is to an even more successful, fun, challenging and engaging 2017! Hopefully you are all as excited as I am to being rolling out our new district cub Calendar - more details to follow in the new year.

For now enjoy the Scout post, birthday celebrations and the Christmas holidays. Matt Jones - ADC Cubs


Another great two months for the Scout section. We have had the Golf Competition and the bowling competition. The golf was organised by Mark Currums and what an evening, it was attended by 49 scouts and more than 25 Explorers and leaders. It was a great turnout.

The Golf Competition Winners were:

The bowling alley have said how well behaved all the Scouts were and said it was a pleasure to have them there for the event.

camp in January (27th-29th) have all been selected to participate, Well Done! Details have been sent to your leaders.

The Bowling Competition winners were:

Thats all from me, please keep inviting me to your Troop nights and have a great Christmas and New Year.

1st: Ben Hutchinson (25th) 2nd: Jay Currums (5th) 3rd: Cheryn Byrne (1st Beechwood) I’m delighted to confirm that the five names that we submitted to attend the

1st: Josh Frodsham (5th) 2nd: Oscar Blaney (20th) 3rd: Will King (5th) 3rd: Lauren Neil (25th) Then we had our bowling competition which was organised by me and the team. For this we had 53 participants which again was a brilliant turnout.

Merseyside County leadership

I’ll hopefully see some of you at the Christmas Scout Post sort. Jordan


on the island, these are only A section night or afternoon well and truly underway available from The Gaiety out watching the show will Theatre certainly make a different with the main cast meeting and fun event for everyone. on Tuesdays and Sundays. In January we’ll publish details on some discounted The show runs from Our Cub cast who rehearse travel and hotel options for Wednesday February 15th to on Saturdays are doing and family and friends who will Saturday 18th with a matiamazing job and this years want to join us on the island. nee show on the Saturday. Cub item will certainly be one to remember for sure. Tickets for our show at the All our show departments Gladstone are now on sale Have a happy, fun, and are busy working behind and are as usual available showbiz Christmas! the scenes to bring that ex- from Aunty Yvonne, groups Enjoy! tra bit of magic to the show! have already started to show



We’ve had a visit to the Isle of Man recently to meet some of the people who will be joining us both on stage and off, that visit went very well with our next one in early January where we will meet the cast and have some rehearsal time with them. There is a great buzz that has started across the island both in Scouting and with the general public which is fantastic to see, our advertising campaigns start across the island mid December to promote the show with tickets on sale from December 1st. People have been in touch asking about tickets for our show

book which is great to see, group discounts are available as ever. You can reserve and book tickets by calling Yvonne on 0151 652 3737. Please make every effort to promote the show to all your sections and help us make this special anniversary show an absolute sell out! We need EVERY group in the district to support us this year. As a thought, why not speak to people in your groups during the Christmas post sort, get an indication from them how many would like to come along and see us and support nearly 200 people from the district who are working on making the show happen.

Graham Lysaght. Show Producer.


Another busy couple of months with viking explorers... From making stoves from Coke cans, wide games in Arrowe Park in the dark, Chip Shop Challenge around Oxton and of course our annual Halloween Party night! We had a Trading Post night then attended Remembrance Sunday and had an investiture. We’ve made paracord bracelets, helped with the scoring at the Scouts Crazy Golf competition and made our Christmas gifts. Chutney, Snowman and Reindeer Poo (marshmallows and chocolate raisins!) and Hot Chocolate Spoons! They all sold really well and we raised more than a £100. We’re looking forward to our Christmas Night out. This year we’re going for a carvery! Follow our adventures at:

Bear’s Grill Crackingly good curry even if i do say so myself - and low fat! Meat curry with celeriac, parsnip and carrot mash. I used pork but stewing beef, or diced pork or lamb or mince will do also INGREDIENTS 400gms of meat 2 coloured peppers packet green beans carrot sticks 2 huge garlic cloves 1 parsnip 1/2 packet of sprouts 2 huge mushrooms

1/2 a celeriac 1 parsnip 1 lemon 2 small teaspoons of: madras curry powder ground ginger ground cinnamon paprika coriander ground or fresh cumin

fenugreek tamarind paste cayenne 12 cardamon pods packet of passata tin of sweet corn 2 big tablespoons of low fat yoghurt 2 spoons of jam or honey

METHOD Fry meat in a separate frying pan to seal Fry chopped peppers, chopped green beans, mushrooms, garlic in TINY amount of oil, very slowly till most of the oil has been absorbed and the pan is almost dry. I turn up heat a bit then dry fry my spices stirring all the time. Add passata, juice of the lemon, a spoonful of honey or jam, tin of sweetcorn add any other veggies you have left overs, and the tamarind. Bring to the boil, then simmer - taste and adjust seasoning as you like it. The longer you simmer the more tasty it becomes. If it gets too dry then add more liquid - fruit juice, left over soup, water if you must. Its even better the next day. Boil a pan of water for the celeriac, parsnip and carrot and sprouts - put sprouts in first they take a lot longer - when sprouts are almost cooked, set aside and then boil celeriac, carrots and parsnip till very soft. Keep warm. When curry frying pan is almost ready drain and mash the parsnip,celeriac, carrots with the natural yoghurt lumpy mash is fine.. If you dont like any of the ingredients leave them out. Happy eating! Will Redfearn

Around The District... Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Explorers and Scouters from across the District joined Guiding members, local dignitaries and members of the public to pay their respects at Prenton War Memorial on Remembrance Sunday. A wreath was laid on behalf of the District following the annual silence.

Birkenhead Remembers

21st Scouts have an a-MAIZE-ing time WE went to the maize maze in October and had the place to ourselves This is the third time we’ve booked it and it’s a great night. Some of our children even managed to complete the Maize Challenge But the highlight for our kids was having the play place all on their own. Our Scouts even managed a mass investiture on the bouncy pillow!

Beavers Bonfire Extravaganza!

Please send your group news and photos to: by 24h January 2017 for inclusion in the February edition v

2oth Birkenhead Christmas Fair

15 Over the past few months Beavers and Scouts at the 25th Birkenhead have been thinking about Global Issues as part of their Global Challenge. Our Beavers thought about how to save energy around their home, how lucky we are to have clean water. They tried filtering water to clean it the way that some people have to before their water is clean enough to drink. Then they looked at Fair Trade products and why it is better to buy them. We used fair trade chocolate and bananas to cook over the fire. Mmmmm Next it was the turn of the Scouts to think global. They looked at Global markets and predicted how income for items of clothing is distributed. We also explored UNICEF rights of children. It was an unusually serious evening that was full of discussion and debate. Next was the bowling competition. Our troop did well with Ben Hutchinson retaining the trophy for the third year‌. Go Ben!! Last week the Circus was in town with the help of Shooting Stars Circus( Beavers then Scouts tried their hand at all sorts of skills and had a great time doing it. Parents even got to have a go! Our evening ended with a Cake Sale organised by one of our Scout parents who is fund raising for three charities and the 25th Birkenhead are supporting her all we can. Her fundraising culminates with a Marathon on the Great Wall of China next May. We know that she will do well‌ especially if she runs as good as she bakes!! 5th Birkenhead Cubs recently completed a evening of fundraising for the RNIB. Also working towards their World Challenge badge . The month of October was officially a spotober with this in mind they spent a full meeting bouncing on a trampoline for two minutes at a time which was fantastic - but very tiring!

2nd Thingwall Cubs spent the weekend of 7th – 9th October celebrating Cubs 100 at Great Tower , Lake Windermere. Eleven Cubs took part in several activities such as Ghyll Scrambling , Fell walking , Kayaking and Rock climbing. Brilliant time had by all – spent most of the weekend wet , but all came home tired but in one piece

1st Beechwood’s Tesco Bag Pack


Birkenhead Scout Archery Have you always wanted to let your section try archery but never had the opportunity? Well now’s your chance! Birkenhead District is pleased to announce that we are introducing monthly archery sessions next year. Archery nights will take place at the Longbow Centre, Price Street Business Centre, Price Street, Birkenhead. The nights will be led by our team of archery permit holders, who will run the night for you, although leaders do need to be on site with their sections. There will be two sessions per evening – 6.30pm until 8.00pm and then 8.00pm until 9.30pm. The cost of each hour and a half session will be £50, to cover the hire of the Centre. So, for example, if you bring 20 young people then it will cost them £2.50 each which is amazing value. For that they will get a full safety briefing and then several goes each. If you bring 8 young people the cost will be higher at £6.25 each but they would be able to shoot almost non-stop after the safety briefing. Initially the sessions will be held on the following dates: Friday 13th January Friday 10th February Friday 10th March Friday 14th April Friday 12th May Friday 9th June Friday 14th August

To book a session please email Jane,, giving the date and time you want to book, the section and approximately how many you will be bringing.

64th Scouts’ Nig ht Hike, kayakin g and Newspaper Challenge

scout shop advert

Birkenhead Scouts Contact Magazine - December 2016