A report on South and South East Districts newest Scout and Explorer Event held at Ullesthorpe Scout Campsite March 2014
The last weekend of March 2014 saw the culmination of 12 months planning for the first Soaring Fox event for Scouts and Explorers from South and South East Districts.
This event has brought the two Districts together in an ambitious project to evolve their respective competitive events, into something much bigger and challenging.
From the initial idea’s that were developed over a casual conversation, the emphasis for the event was to provide a tool that could offer a unique opportunity for personal development of younger leaders by giving them real responsibility in the running of the event.
The Friday afternoon saw a hive of activity as the various event teams went about their tasks, preparing the Ullesthorpe Camp Site for the arrival of the first Scout teams. With marquee’s erected, flags and banners in place and the camp kitchen churning out curried pasties like they were going out of fashion!
In fact, it became a standing joke that this was ‘the year of the curried pasty’ with them being served for breakfast, lunch, dinner and supper!
Saturday morning saw the sun rising and the clouds clearing as the first teams arrived at check in for their kit and route checks. At 10am sharp, the first teams set of, full of enthusiasm and keen to do well. Every 20 minutes saw the departure of more teams and a sigh of relief from the organisers that, so far, everything had gone according to plan. No time to rest though as the first of the Explorer teams started to arrive and set up their tents.
With Event control humming like a well-oiled machine, with regular radio updates coming in from each of the activity bases, and updates on teams arrival times flowing back and forth, the first Scout teams started to arrive back at base, still full of energy and keen to complete the final task to the best of their ability hoping to gain those last few precious points and to perhaps snatch first place!
With the catering staff in full flow again, serving dinner (more curried pasties and roast chicken!) the Explorer event got under way. The competitive spirit really coming through as the teams started on their slightly longer route.
As darkness fell, the Scouts gathered round the campfire for songs and some light hearted entertainment, whilst the Explorers were hitting their target times like clockwork.
As the night drew on, it became clear that the Explorer scores were very close and it would all be decided on the results of the last activity. In the end there was only 10 points that separated the first and second places, after a hard fought competition.
So as the clocks rolled forward into British Summer Time and after breakfast on the Sunday morning, the teams all gathered in the campfire circle eager to know who had won the many prizes and trophy. With the County’s newly appointed Commissioner on hand to present the awards after a Scouts Own ceremony, it was announced that South’s 1st Claybrooke & Ullesthorpe Scout troop and South East’s Tigers Explorer Unit had won their respective events.
So with everyone exhausted the campsite was cleared and thoughts turned to next year’s event.
The weekend of March 28th-29th is the provisional date, keep an eye out for further information as we are planning on opening the event up to all the Groups around the County so places will be limited.
A huge thanks to all the Leaders and to the Radio operators, who gave up their time to support Soaring Fox. Without you we could not have run the event, and we hope that you will all be able to support Soaring Fox 2015.