The Oaks Campsite
For full details, photos of the campsite and facilities and for bookings, see our separate website: www.oakscampsite.org.uk
Let’s start with a little bit of history
The camp site at Oaks in Charnwood has been associated with Scouting in Loughborough District for many years. The field and woodland was owned by Miss. Clarke who kindly allowed the District to use it for camps, competitions and other training purposes. The hut was the home of the Oaks Scout Troop whose leader Mr C. L. Bowler acted as warden for the site and it is thanks to his efforts that we are now the owners of this excellent facility.
Miss Clarke died in 1972 and left to the Loughborough Scout Council the hut and the adjacent stack yard and also gave the Council first option on the purchase of the field and woodland
Both the leaders and the Executive Committee were unanimous in their decision that we should proceed with the purchase of both the field and the woodland. The probate value of these was approximately £1800 for ten acres of field and nine acres of woodland. Water is laid on to the top of the field and there is a road at both the top and bottom of the field. To make the purchase the Council was fortunate to be offered an interest free loan of £1500 repayable at £200 per year.
Each year a winter walk is held to maintain right of way across the top road out of the site, a little used route except for the occasional night hike.
The Alpine Hut
On site we have two buildings for hire, one suitable for pack holidays and sleepovers and the other as camp kitchen.
The Alpine Hut is ideal for camping without bringing the mess tent and kitchen. The hut has been refurbished to provide a basic building, but with a kitchen area. This area has been designed to segregate the cooking from the main area of the building and has a four ring gas cooker with oven and grill, an electric boiler for hot water, stainless steel sink with cold water, fridge and ample storage space for your food and cooking equipment. It is also equipped with strong tables and benches for seating 30+
This building used with the adjacent camping site makes it ideal for Cub and Brownie Camping or for a base for older Scout and Guides. There is no need to bring mess tents and marquees along with loads of tables, benches etc. You can cook, eat and use the building for quiet activities, but have sleeping tents out on the field. Should the weather turn bad then the building is suitable for emergency accommodation. The Alpine Hut is situated at the edge of the woodland and is separated from the camping field by a dry stone wall and stream.
The Clarke Hut
The Clarke Hut is the Oaks Campsite Pack Holiday centre and is suitable for Cub & Brownie holidays as well as Beaver & Rainbow sleepovers and also training courses.
The building has been extensively refurbished to a high standard and has the following features:
- A main hall approx 60’ x 30’ with tables and chairs for up to 50 people (more available on request) – New chairs and tables were purchased in 2010
- A kitchen accessed by double doors and a serving hatch. The kitchen is fitted with stainless steel surfaces and shelves, a six ring gas cooker with large oven, hot cupboard, fridge, freezer and instant hot water boiler for drinks.
- Two bunk rooms – sleeping 8 and 4 persons
- Toilets consisting of a combined washroom (3 toilets, 4 washbasins) and a separate room with a toilet and washbasin, all supplied with hot water. This gives flexibility for male/female use.
- Heating to the main building is by gas central heating
- The building is equipped with fire extinguishers and smoke/heat detectors.
- The building was part carpeted in 2010 so a strict rule of “muddy boots only so far” is in force
The recommended sleeping capacities for the main hall are 30 (24 for Brownies), we have 24 camp beds available on request.
The charge for the building includes all gas and electricity. The building is available for hire during the week please ask for details.
The site offers a range of activities some run by our own staff that are fully qualified and experienced. These include Climbing and Abseiling with a choice of 20’ or 40’, Archery, Rifle Shooting, Mountain boards, Crate stacking and the legendary Radio Controlled Cars (on a new track being built this winter by the Leicestershire Jamboree Contingent)
Other activities are available where all equipment is provided but are self-run, these being Grass sledges, Jungle trail, Black hole, Bouldering wall, Orienteering, Table tennis (all weather) and of course the IBus where all things technical live.
The site has several hike routes of varying distances available for those who wish to take in the surrounding area of the campsite.
There is also the Oaks Challenge Walk – a distance of 22 miles to be completed in one day or used as a two day event with a stopover at nearby John’s Lee Wood. We even have a badge and certificate for those who complete the challenge.
The site has two Campfire circles one for the whole site and one for those smaller gatherings.
The Open Air Chapel is situated at the top of the woods in a clearing. This is the ideal place for the reflective moments in Scouting. Whether it is a full service on Sunday morning or scouts own at the end of camp, no quieter place on the campsite can be found. In May it is surrounded by bluebells and the annual spring service is held here. Come along and join us this year on May 15th, you’d be very welcome.
If we have tempted you a little why not come along and camp with us, get in touch with Lesley Mitchell our booking secretary on 01332 814927 or email Lesley@oakscampsite.org.uk to check if the dates are available.
If you really want to get involved why not join one of the Weekend Warden teams and help others experience the fun of camping in all weathers, you can help with activities, site maintenance and if you really want to serve in the shop – Harriat’s is the site tuck shop where a good range of sweets, drinks and souvenirs are available. Get in touch with Simon Birchall if you feel this is for you, on Simon@oakscampsite.org.uk or 01332 853452
We look forward to welcoming you to the Oaks Scout Campsite in 2011 and beyond.