2021-08-27 – Hammock Camp

With the revision of COVID restriction and guidance on Scouting activities we managed to arrange at short notice a Hammock Camp at Thriftwood Scout Camp Site.

Friday – Setting up camp was certainly different without tents, with a shelter and parachuter camp fire area already on site it only involved rigging 20 plus hammocks and setting up the kitchen which seem to take the same time as a normal camp! With the Scouts exploring their new surroundings, collecting wood and fetching water the adventure begun with a BBQ feast of sausages, burgers and corn on the cob, it was pretty impressive how much smoke a parachute can contain, let alone Tim’s laser show to entertain us. And what do all Scouts of all ages enjoy after supper and in the dark, Wide-Games of course, with a hide and seek game as we paraded through the camp sites, along with a night time navigation snippets whilst we were in the clearings identifying: The Plough, North Star and Jupiter rising in the West. With the day finishing with Hot Chocolate and biscuits around a blazing log fire.

Saturday – Starting the day with Paul’s world-famous Porridge which always sets you up for a day at camp, even if it was made with white pepper (it looked the same as salt container!). The Scouts prepared themselves a breakfast of Bacon, Eggs and Beans before the morning activities of wood carving with a few good tent pegs being created as well as a hamster chew sticks and other creations, with the Explorers fabricating camp seating. The Kayak session was great fun, with the leaders seeming to fall in much easier and more often than any of the younger members especially when the games of had and little fishy being played. After hot showers a lunch of ham & cheese or even cheese & ham sandwiches was quickly devoured, followed by field games before the trip to the ‘Providore’ to stock on sweets and drinks. The rest of the afternoon was taken up with collecting wood and preparing the chickens for supper cooked in Dutch ovens as a one pot meal, surprisingly there was very little left overs as compared to the breakfast porridge.

Another fine evening enabled more wide games to be played, followed by the traditional Hot Chocolate around the camp fire.

Sunday – Pancakes proved to be very popular, with the predictable flipping competition. Following breakfast, the Scouts walked the camp site collecting an array of different leaves from the trees and identifying the various wildlife as well as sampling the plentiful blackberries. All participated in a Scout Own reflecting on Scout and Scouting focusing on how we as individuals can achieve so much working with other scouts. The walk ended up at the assault course where the cargo net proved the most popular obstacle. With lunch devoured the last few field games were played out, with a flag down ceremony where all Scouts were presented with a Thriftwood ‘Intents’ Camping badge to close down the camp.

2019 Summer Camp – Cinque Ports Expedition

With this years summer cap plans to return to Gravelines not be possible, Kevin and Sean quickly arranged an alternative expedition camp to the south coast at Kingsdown Camp Site near Deal via public transport.

Friday 26th July: With rain clouds approaching Dartford, we meet at the train station at 10am checking people in with their run-sacs and bags. Boarding the half past train heading to Walmer away from the rain, arriving two hours later, where we shouldered our bags and headed to the coast path via Walmer castle. It was not long before bags were adjusted and trades made helping each other out as we hiked the 4 miles to the camp site.

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Summer Camp 2018

I would like to thank all the leaders involved volunteering their time, giving up a week of work, as well as the camp site team at Linnet Clough making our camp a truly enjoyable one, and not to forget our youth members good behavior and keen spirits which was a great combination for a safe, enjoyable, memorable group summer camp. A Summer Camp without tents!

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2018-03-30 – Easter Camp 18

With the advance forecast looking somewhat inclement, it was decided that we would switch from our usual pitch at Thriftwood to ‘The Village’, comprising of a large permanent marquee with refrigeration, gas range, lighting and running water, together with 5 x 6 person bunk sheds and 1 x 4 person, the extra cost was well within contingency and given that it included all the gas we needed and saved us the fuel to transport all the tentage, tables, benches etc., was money well spent.  The bunk rooms accommodated the Scouts, leaders and for the first time, 4 selected cubs from the Phillips Pack.  The Explorers braved the elements in their tents, but with the experience they have gained from years of camping, they were snug as a bug.

Activities included a pioneering project, raft building (and piloting) and fishing on the well stocked lake.  All the young people, Cubs included, cooked a Friday evening meal of sausages, mash and beans, Saturday morning, again cooked by the YP was an ‘English Breakfast’, lunch was prepared centrally between activities and in the evening everyone cooked Paella, with homemade garlic bread done in the ovens. Everyone ate their fill and the meal was a great success.

With a pirate theme for the camp, there were frequent shouts of ‘Arrrggghhh’ at roll call etc.

Alas not too many photo’s taken, but a few to get the flavor of the camp. However, everyone had a good camp, made even better with a swift strike and very little wet kit to unload and hang out back at base.

Megan Selected for #WSJ2019

As many of you will know, our Megan from the Johnston ESU and Young Leader from Phillips Pack  has been selected as one of 7 young people to represent Dartford as part of the Kent contingent, at the 2019 World Scout Jamboree in west Virginia.

Each young person attending will need to raise just shy of £4000 to cover their costs and to help those in developing countries, who do not have the same fundraising opportunities.

Dartford district Scouts, the 5th Dartford Scout Group and Dartford Borough Council have been very generous in their support of Megan’s fundraising, but there is still a way to go and all donations and fundraising opportunities would be very welcome.

2018-01-12 – Winter Camp 2018

37 hardened adventures from the 5th Dartford Scout Group’s Johnston ESU, Earley & Burne Scouts descended on Gilwell Park to attend the 2018 Winter Camp.  Amongst our number were 6 leaders and two Ventures, Tara & Nora, from Dublin, who had linked up with us in a joint venture with Scouting Ireland. All the young people had a great time and new friendships were formed, which we hope will see a trip to Dublin in the not too distant future.