More than 300 beavers, cubs, scouts and leaders from across Leicestershire enjoyed the Welford Road atmosphere this weekend when Tigers took on Saracens in the Gallagher Premiership.
With a climbing wall, badges and an exciting Gallagher Premiership fixture, Scout groups joined in the pre-match build up with a day of activities.
Situated out on the plaza outside the Holland & Barrett Stand, youngsters put their climbing skills to the test and were able to collect a special Leicester Tigers scout badge for their uniform.
Scout ambassador, explorer and Tigers fan Ed Stafford also had a special message for the visiting Scouts with a big screen message ahead of kick-off. You can read an interview with Ed below.
Carol Black, County Commissioner for Leicestershire Scouts, said: “It’s a great day out and fantastic to be out meeting people and fans as they get ready for the game today.
Each year, Tigers always make us feel part of the family and we know from the feedback from each of the groups how much they enjoy the day.
“Numbers of Scouts across the region continue to grow and days like this only help promote the activities that Scouts enjoy every week.
“Next year, we have our huge Charnwood camp – which involves scout groups from across the county for a week-long camp – and this is all a part of it really. We’re out all the time, and continue to plan in events and fun days for groups to get involved with. Days like this are a great day out and it’s great to be back at Welford Road.”
Explorer Ed Stafford talks Tigers and Scouts
Each season, Welford Road dedicates a matchday to Scout groups across Leicestershire with activities, discounts and badges for youngsters and leaders.
This weekend welcomes the official Scout Day at Welford Road as Leicester Tigers welcome Saracens in Round 8 of the Gallagher Premiership (Sunday, November 25 3.00pm).
As part of the day’s celebrations, we caught up with Explorer, Scouting Ambassador and Tigers’ fan Ed Stafford to find out how rugby and scouting have helped to shape his life.
Ed holds the Guinness World Record for being the first human ever to walk the length of the Amazon River, which he completed in 2010 after starting expedition in April 2008, on the southern coast of Peru.
He has since gone on to create a number of Discovery Channel series covering his expeditions as well as write a number of books about survival.
Ed was raised in Leicester as a Tigers fan and credits both Scouting and Rugby as two huge influences in his life.
“Rugby taught me how to work in a team setting’, Ed said. “Whilst Scouting provided me with the skills in an outdoor setting, without these two factors I would never have been able explore the world as I have.”
“I played rugby for my school team Stoneygate School before joining Stoneygate RFC and also was a cub and then a Scout at Fleckney Scout group.
I don’t play full seasons now – if I get four games a season I’m happy as I’m away a lot of the time. It’s nice to still be involved and play for a club with my old mates.”
Welford Road holds a number of memories for Ed, adding: “I remember the noise of the crowds and chants of ‘Deano’. Dean Richards was a huge hero of mine and my mates at the time.
“He’s an absolute legend, I remember him doing American football style passes through his legs, whilst smashing into people. Players were up to their knees in mud and you’d probably see about three exciting moves all game, but that was part and parcel of the whole thing.”
Whilst Ed can’t make the Scouts Day fixture due to work commitments, he was keen to get involved and will have a special message for the visiting Scouts ahead of kick-off at the weekend.
“Scouting teaches you a whole range of life skills and I’m sure the groups visiting at the weekend will have a fantastic day out. I’m gutted I can’t be at the game and I hope to get down to Welford Road soon.”