History

HistoryIntroduction

Scouting began in Kesgrave in 1927 with 15 boys, 2 leaders and 3 helpers. The Group was formed by Rev. E. Sewell Wontner. There was one Cub Pack and one Scout Troop. Meetings were held in the old Parish Rooms at the bottom of Bell Lane.

It was not until 1951 that the Scout Group had it's first permanent Scout HQ, a Nissen Hut erected on the old playing field (near the site of the Church Hall). The hut was donated by Mr. Jolly in 1950, planning permission was gained in April 1951 and the Hut completed around September 1951. At the time the Scout Group estimated that the cost of the brick work, cement and damp course would not exceed £6!! and obtained a loan to help with the costs. The fund raising team raised the money through selling wood, whist drives and donations. The hut was illuminated by three 100W bulbs and heated by a coal fire and three oil heaters. In the winter boys wore mufflers to keep warm as by the time the fire was lit meetings would have finished.

An extension to the Nissen Hut was planned in 1958 and completed in September 1959. This provided two extra rooms one for the Rangers to meet and the other for storage and scouters meetings. At the same time the Scout Group realised that a new HQ was required and set a financial target of raising £100 per year. However progress was slow and by 1968 only £300 had been raised.

In 1968 the subject of a new Scout HQ was raised in earnest and a new hall was estimated at £2000 (the final cost was £3140). By that time the corrugated iron sheets of the Nissen Hut were rusted badly and the roof leaked when it rained. A Newspaper article of the time stated 'the building looked more fit for keeping chickens than holding Scout meetings'.

A supporters committee was set up in May 1969 and the call went out to parents and to the village as a whole to begin fund raising for a new Scout HQ. By September 1974 the building had been completed and paid for. Funds were raised through selling Christmas cards, jumble sales, fashion shows, barbecues, holding dinners, collecting newspapers, donations etc. At that time the Group had 55 Cubs, 23 Scouts, 8 Ventures and 10 Leaders.

By 1978 it was decided that more room was required and an extension was planned. Planning permission was gained however the extension was never built.

In 1991 it was decided that due to the expansion of the Grange Farm development we would need a new hall. After 12 years of fund raising and negotiating the hall was completed in 2004. Details of this project can be found under New Hall Project. We sold the old hall on 18 March 2005. It is now ‘Roundabout Nursery’.