The History of 12th Northolt

It all started with the 7th and 5th Northolt Scout Groups joining together which formed the current 12th Northolt Scout Group.

5th Northolt Scout Group was started in 1944 by Norman Thorn and first met in a garage in Laughton Road before moving to the Old Kensington Road Playing fields sports pavillion ( this ground is now the new country park - Northala Fields). The 7th, run by Bert Wheeler met in St Josephs Church Hut which he formed in 1955 and is now demolished.

The hut was was sited at the start of the Old Ruislip Road (entry from the main Ruislip Road) and is now an unused piece of land with building materials etc stored there plus they also met in the now ‘Jehova Witness’ Hall - Hawtrey Ave. Norman Thorn, became the Scout Leader of the 12th and began fund raising events to enable the purchasing of land at the back of Laughton Road Northolt which he’d had his eyes on for some time. He negotiated with the Council which was successful and built the present timber HQ with assistance from the Parents Committee.

The 12th is one of the last existing timber built structures in the Greenford District and the building was officially opened on 29th September 1967. An extension was added to the premises in 1994 which provided a better kitchen, toilets, and store room, however due to failing numbers the HQ deteriorated and the building and grounds desperately needed a facelift.

The late husband of the now secretary designed the existing building and extension Our Local SNT Police came to the rescue through Lord Hunt, who at the time was Parliamentary under Secretary of State at the Ministry of Justice. The Community Pay Back Teams were employed in the refurbishment of the building and grounds.

Work started December 2008 and was featured on the Local TV news and in the Northolt Gazette. The building was completed with a reopening ceremony on 4th April 2009. After the opening ceremony a local firm kindly donated a brand new kitchen and appliances which has made a great difference to the HQ.   

In Summer 2016 we had our hut redecorated by the Leaders, Exec and parents, and new toilets installed, with the help of a local plumber. If you have any questions or more information about the groups history, please feel free to contact us.

The History of Scouting

Can you imagine a world without Scouting?

Without everyday adventures, the world would certainly be a less interesting place, and if it wasn’t for the talent and originality of one man, the Scout Movement might never have existed at all.

This man was Robert Baden-Powell (1857-1941), a soldier, artist, actor and free-thinker. Best known for his spirited defence of the small South African township of Mafeking during the Boer War, he was propelled to further fame as the Founder of Scouting.

Inspired during the siege by the initiative shown by boys under pressure, Baden-Powell (BP) realised that young people had huge potential that was often left untapped.

Already thinking of developing a training programme for young people in Britain, he was encouraged by friends to rewrite his handbook for soldiers (Aids to Scouting) for this younger audience.

The Brownsea camp

In 1907 Baden-Powell held a camp on Brownsea Island in Poole, Dorset, to try out his ideas and brought together 20 boys from a variety of backgrounds. The success of the camp spurred him on to finish what would become a classic book of the 20th century.

Scouting for Boys was published in 1908 in six fortnightly parts at 4d a copy. What had been intended as a training aid for existing organisations became the handbook of a new Movement, which secured the royal seal of approval the following year when King Edward VII agreed to the introduction of the King’s Scout Award.

In its first census in 1910, Scouting had almost 108,000 participants; over 100,000 were young people.

Scouting for all ages

It was a global phenomenon. As numbers grew, it soon became clear that young people of all ages and in every country wanted to get involved in Scouting. Wolf Cubs came along for younger Scouts in 1916, followed four years later by Rover Scouts for an older age range.

1920 was also the year of the first World Scout Jamboree. At London’s Olympia, Scouts from across the world gathered to celebrate international unity and the growth of their great Movement.

Branching out

Lord Baden-Powell died in 1941 but his legacy continued. Scouting became a byword for adventure, usefulness and global friendship.

As the Movement spread across the world, Scouting continued to evolve in the United Kingdom. Following heroic work during the Second World War when Scouts acted as coast guards, couriers and stretcher bearers, members continued to show they were truly able to live their motto ‘Be prepared.’

Forward thinking

Scouting has never stood still. New branches such as Air and Sea Scouts became increasingly popular, gaining recognition from the RAF and the Royal Navy. Scouts were on hand to help out at major events such as the Queen’s coronation, helping the crowds who camped out overnight to get a glimpse of the spectacle.

The Movement continued to grow and move with the times. Rover Scouts and Senior Scouts became Venture Scouts and the badge system was updated to reflect the wider range of activities a Scout could do. Girls were invited to join the Venture Scout section; this was introduced to other sections in the early 1990s.

In the true spirit of an inclusive organisation, younger children got to experience Scouting for the first time with the official incorporation of the Beaver Scouts in 1986. Three years later, official headgear was abolished for all sections.

Scouting for the 21st Century

At the dawn of the 21st Century, the Association again underwent reform with the launch of a new logo, uniform and training programme and the introduction of Explorer Scouts and the Scout Network by 2002.

In 2007, the Movement celebrated its centenary and the 21st World Scout Jamboree was held in the UK. Scouting hit the headlines in 2009 when TV adventurer Bear Grylls was announced as the new Chief Scout.