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A Century of Scouting


 A history of Rochdale District Scouts from 1907 to 2007

by Ian Kay

One hundred years is a lot of years – a lot of changes, and a lot of achievements!

Scouting was started in Rochdale as early as it did because an adult was prepared to discuss the topic of the day with a young person and the young person was confident and honest enough to tell the adult he was talking rubbish!

A century later and Explorer Scouts, Patrol Leaders and Cub Sixers are still encouraged by similar minded adults to voice their opinions and shape the Scout Movement in Rochdale for its second century.

The District’s Scouting has been guided by many very important people of Rochdale namely the thousands of adults who have given of their time. It is to these people that this book is dedicated.

Some adults have received national Scouting awards in the form of Chief Scouts Commendations, Medals of Merit, Silver Acorns or Silver Wolfs and their bars in recognition of outstanding service.

Some have got their names in print in the local papers and hence some have found their place in this history. There are hundreds more who have acted as leaders, helpers, administrators, supporters and sponsors who’s names are not included.

But let’s remember that their contributions are not forgotten for without them this history and the thousands of young people’s lives changed by their efforts would not have been realised.

Collecting together the material for this book has illustrated that people have fond memories of their involvement in Rochdale Scouting. Be this as a young person or an adult the effect on so many lives is enormous.

Young people thrust into responsible roles when the men of the town went off to war. Individual youngsters who have found support and encouragement in Scouting, that wasn’t provided in their home life, enabling them to develop, and in later years, take on what their parents thought would be impossible.

Friendships that have stood the test of time made whilst in the Scouts are too numerous to list. There are also the marriages as a result of people meeting through Scouting.

Think of the number of exports from Rochdale to other towns and countries where skills developed through Rochdale Scouting have been spread far and wide.

There are politicians, doctors, nurses, accountants, managers, and indeed all walks of life around that owe their leadership, organisational and management skills to those adults who have served as role models and leaders.

As you dip into this book to read about the District’s history remember what is recorded but please also reflect on the points raised above in relation to the fantastic achievements made in the lives of thousands of people as a direct result of an involvement with Rochdale Scouting.

If through reading this it has brought back memories, unlocked those gems from the past, or given ideas for the future of Scouting in Pennine, then I have achieved what I set out to do.

It only leaves me to now wish all those currently involved in Pennine Scouting and to those in years to come who will join them along with all who read this history every happiness in their journey along the Scouting trail.

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