8th Bulawayo Hillside Scout Group
A GOLDEN WISH
8th (Hillside) a golden wish I send today
That you for every try to stay
Faithful, courageous, brave and true
For that’s the wish I have for you.
When things look tough and hope is gone,
Don’t just give up. Think back along
The march of time and as you do
Courage to go on will come to you.
For you will see those from the past
Who made this Group with will to last
Through war and peace, a special breed
Whose fame has spread by word and deed.
For see, my friend, the Group gave birth
To a family now spread o’er the earth
And all salute, shake hands and say
Well done, on this our Fiftieth Birthday.
And so dear 8th, this golden toast
Is for the future, for you to boast
Of glorious days, of years bygone,
Of greater triumphs yet to come.
In today’s world, voluntary organisations face ever-growing difficulties in grappling with escalating costs and finding worthy leaders willing to offer their talents in a spirit of service and without thought of personal reward.
Scouting is no exception.
In Africa at large, the concept of voluntary service is a delicate flower requiring constant encouragement and support.
In Bulawayo, the fortunes of the Boy Scouts Association reflect the difficulties of the times but despite these problems, the proud record and constancy of the 8th Bulawayo (Hillside) Group, now celebrating its 50th Anniversary Year, offers an example to us all.
Whatever the difficulties encountered, "the 8th" continues to produce succeeding generations of boys who have preserved the ideals for which the Movement stands and who are able to demonstrate the traditional Scouting skills encouraged by the Founder. They even look like Scouts, which those who have seen some of their contemporary overseas counterparts find most refreshing!
In addition to Scouting’s own wide range of activities, the Group continues to foster other annual events such as its Fathers and Sons Dinners, Hobby Evenings and a Soapbox Derby - all of which help create that wonderful feeling, both for the boy and his parents, that here is a set up worth belonging to.
As a resident of Hillside and a former Scout Commissioner, I regard the 8th as a great powerhouse for good and I wish all concerned continued success as they go forward into the next 50 years!
8th Hillside Scout Troop - 1983
Back row: Hilton Ralphs, Peter Tipler,1? ,Alun Carter (21/5/05 currently en route to NZ, resident country No 5), 3?, Martin Rickwood (21/5/05 now in London), Dave Cookyarbrough,6?, Graham Williams
Standing: Rob Blundell, Luke Moloney, Mark Ralphs, 7?,8?,9?, Andrew Arrowsmith, b?, Wayne Jolly
Seated: Donald Heath, Havelock McNielage, Peter Hartley, Norman Scott, Craig Yeatman, Clinton Jones, Andy Blundell
Front: Gordon Wood, Michael Enslin (21/5/05 today holds the record of most active duty flight hours for a mig), Colin Campbell, MJ Minshal, g?,h?,Stuart "Ozzy" Crichton
Recognize anyone? Do let me know...
8th Hillside Cub Pack - 1983
Back Row:-Craig Yeatman, Justine Ralphs, Megan Jones, Havelock McNielage, Hilton Ralphs
Standing:- c1?, Sean Willis,c3?, Colin Crocket,c5?,c6?,c7?,c8?
Kneeling:- c9,c10, Bruce Crichton,c12,c13,c14
Front Row:-c15,c16, Steven Enslin,c18, Bruce Dickenson,c20
Recognize anyone? Do let me know...
PROVINCIAL SCOUT COMMISSIONER’S
It is a privilege and an honour to be given the opportunity to write about the 8th Bulawayo (Hillside) Scout Group on the occasion of their 50th Anniversary.
I have known the 8th for about 24 years and during that time it has always been a Group to be reckoned with.
It is a Group that has fortunately been well endowed with good leaders who, over the years, have left their mark; my memories are of 'Dobbie' Dobson and Jack Carlisle, both entirely different in characteristics but both Scout leaders in the true sense. Fortunately for the Group and Bulawayo in general, that Scouting tradition is now being carried on by Norman Scott because without the 8th things would not be quite the same. Hundreds of boys must have passed through the ranks of the 8th, and are now scattered all over the world, but I am sure that they remember their days with the Group with nostalgic affection.
Behind every good Troop we must not forget there is a strong parents' committee. The parents’ committee is often overlooked but without it, a Group cannot operate efficiently. Here again the 8th have been singularly fortunate in having a succession of good and keen Group committees who have always rallied round and assisted in every way.
So there we have it, the recipe for a good Scout Group - take a bunch of keen parents, as many dedicated Scout Leaders as possible, add a bunch of boys, stir into the Scouting pot and enjoy the result.
As we grow older, youthful memories of scouting days manifest themselves and help keep evergreen the youth and joy, the spirit of adventure, the fun and comradeship, the knowledge of belonging to a Movement that has meant so much to so many.
After 50 years the 8th Bulawayo (Hillside) Group has a proud record and heritage to uphold; the present members must acquit themselves well and ensure that the Group has a good foundation to the commencement of the next 50 years. Let us hope that some future P.S.C. will be writing about the centennial of the 8th. May they go from strength to strength and may the spirit of Scouting be ever present amongst them.
To the 8th I say:- "Well done, keep up the good work. May the ‘Flame Lily’ never be extinguished."
GROUP SCOUT LEADER’S REPORT
The occasion of an anniversary gives one the opportunity to look back over the years and recall those memorable events which have attracted boys and men to Scouting. The 8th has had 50 glorious years of active, challenging Scouting that has benefited hundreds of men now spread around the world. Many of the activities our Scouts have taken part in were products of the Group itself, when ideas had been put forward at Scouters’ or Patrol Leaders' Councils, discussed and then put into action. Notable among these are the annual Hobbies Nights, the Father and Scout Dinners, the Tramp Grand Prix and the Troop Training Camps. Some of the activities have been of a national or international nature such as the World Jamborees, to which, over the years, 19 of our Scouts have been sent. More frequently, our members have found places on the South African Senior Scout Adventures, proving to be worthy ambassadors of our Group.
The training programme by itself however, does not make the Group. Surely, along with the activities, the camps and expeditions, it is the individual Scout who gives the Group its character. Fortunately, the 'characters' have been a credit to the Group making programmes come alive and interesting; sometimes deliberately and sometimes quite accidentally. Events such as when a new Scout learning to cook burns his patrors dinner or when that little chap fell off a monkey bridge and had to hang in mid-air until rescued. These and many more experiences will long be remembered by the Scouts present at the time. Strangely, it is these near-disasters; the experiences of getting lost on hikes and really having to think about the situation that are needed in order to develop Scouts and so turn a 'tender-foot' into the proud holder of the Sable Award.
The individual personalities of boys inter-acting with one another and coming together when threatened with an outside foe has created in the 8th a fierce pride; a determination to make the best of any situation. This has been seen in Inter-Troop competitions where the team has entered with the will to win. We have not always carried away the trophies but by competing, we have seen where our weaknesses are and have done something to rectify our shortcomings. In recent years, when our outdoor scouting had to be curbed owing to the uncertainty of adequate security, the Troop has taken an active interest in the development of Gordon Park; the Provincial camping ground in the Matopos. With a number of definite projects to get involved in and in the knowledge that it will benefit themselves and those who follow, the Scouts have enthusiastically thrown themselves into work out at the Park. Not all is work however, and if parents could see their sons on some weekends, covered from head to foot in mud after a rough and tumble in the vlei, they would realise what genuine fun can develop when a group of boys get together.
To the Cubs and Scouts of the 8th - it is YOUR Group, the programme will be as exciting and as instructive as you demand it be. A proud tradition has been carefully nurtured through the years and is still developing because you are adding to it in some small way. Look forward to the years ahead - for the problems to be faced will be no more difficult than those faced and overcome in the past. Make the most of the good times for there will be plenty of them as the Group continues to flourish as a worthy part of the Scout Movement.
Mr Des Fulton samples a brew prepared afloat on Matopos Dam by Richard Stott & Andy Blundell
50 years ago and still today - the main joy in a Cubs life is eating.
cc1?,cc2?,cc3?,cc4?,cc?, Dafydd Jones, Justine Ralphs
Recognise anyone? do let me know...
Meritorious Awards Through The Years
THE SCOUTS’ GILT CROSS
CUB SCOUT WOOD BADGE
CHIEF SCOUT AWARDS 1983
THE DOBSON SHIELD FOR THE
BEST DRESSED SCOUT
THE PATROL SHIELD FOR THE
PATROL WITH THE MOST POINTS
THE LOGBOOK TROPHY FOR THE
BEST LOGBOOK OF THE YEAR
THE HEWETT TROPHY FOR THE
BEST CUB INSTRUCTOR
THE NEVILLE BARRETT TROPHY
FOR JUNIOR ENDEAVOUR
THE NIGEL THERON B.C.R. TROPHY
FOR SENIOR ENDEAVOUR
C.S.L. MRS. J. RALPHS
A.C.S.L. MRS. M. JONES
T/L P. HARTLEY, S/S C. YEATMAN,
P/L A. BLUNDELL, P/L C. JONES
P/L CLINTON JONES
P/L ANDREW BLUNDELL
P/L HAVELOCK McNEILAGE
A/P/L GRAEME WILLIAMS
S/S CRAIG YEATMAN
RECOLLECTIONS OF HAPPY DAYS
by Steve Baum
It’s difficult to pinpoint the highlights of my Scouting days, as there were so many good times. My era with the 8th was 1969 to 1973, when the Troop was led by Jack Carlisle assisted by "Chiefie" Dennis Cunningham and Des Classen.
My own group of Scouts consisted of Pete Baum, Neil Mcllroy (6am Bam), Mike Allan, Robin Murphy, Roy White and Andrew Barker. Our juniors were Mike Brown, Ian Stone (Rocky), Wade Begemann, Ant. Klein (Klink) and Neville Barrett, the names in brackets being their nicknames.
Our time as Scouts was very outdoor orientated as the war had not escalated and we were free to roam the Matopos ad lib. Cycle tours were initiated in those days; hikes and camps were common practice in the Troop. "Norm" was the main initiator of events, including the Tramp Grand Prix. This started on Beacon Hill and ran there until Mike Allan navigated himself off the road and down a minor cliff. It then progressed to Burnside where a tamer hill was utilised. There I managed to get a speed wobble in Wade Begemann’s cart and promptly removed half my face on the tarmac. I was awarded the "blood money" on a unanimous vote. Neil Mcllroy inherited his name from an Assegai competition where he was awarded the dirtiest billy to clean for well deserved punishment. Sitting in the dirt scraping off the muck with the aid of sand he lifted the billy and banging it repeatedly on the ground hollered "Bam, bam, bam, bam." Ian Ritchie (Yogi) and Steve Allen (Boo Boo) inherited their names from their inseparable activities and constant "buddy buddy" association.
"Monex" was probably the most significant camp we attempted successfully. The rain experienced in the last few days certainly caused some humour and horror. One dark and cloudy night we all settled down to sleep; for most of us sleeping in the rain was to be a new experience. John Carlisle being as thrifty as ever produced a home-made plastic sack into which he slipped his sleeping bag and settled down for a dry night. As the rain descended we all scrambled for the cover of "Emma" - Gordon Park’s truck which is still in use - except Carlisle who was totally oblivious of the rain except for the odd drop on his head. Boo Boo and Yogi however were as unprepared as the rest of us and got somewhat drenched before deciding to swallow their pride and head for shelter. Naturally revenge is always sought against those who do not suffer. A small water course carrying a reasonable quantity of water was diverted into the highly effective plastic bag which kept John nice and dry. After a period of time John awoke to find an ever-increasing puddle developing at his feet. At this stage he too swallowed his pride and joined the rabble sheltering under Emma. The next day Boo Boo explained in great depth how condensation is a major feature in such plastic bags! (Further details of the idiosyncrasies of a former Warden of Gordon Park have been omitted to save Steve from charges of defamation - Editor).
IN DAYS OF YORE!
"The 8th" on the move in the thirties, complete with trek-cart and bugler. Founder G.S.L. Bill Russell in front. (and who else?)
The trek-cart was built by Mr. Alex Crerar, a local
Blacksmith and wheelwright who was a founder member of
the Group Committee.
THE "THANKS" BADGE
The Scout Movement’s "Thanks" Badge is presented to persons who are not members of the Scout Association but have given service to the Movement over the years. In appreciation of their service to the 8th Bulawayo (Hillside) Scout Group, the following have been presented with the "Thanks" Badge:-
MR. A. CRERAR|
MRS. K. BUNDOCK
MRS. N. SMITH
MR. A. MOORE
MRS. G. SCOTT
MR. P. COLEY
MR. D. FULTON
MR. A. FULTON|
MRS. K. SAVIN
MRS. L. STONE
MR. D. CLASSEN
MRS. V. BAUM
MR. J. BOLTON
SCOUTING IN THE DARK AGES
I am one of the modern generation for whom history stretches no further back than yesterday. I have vague, misty recollections of my first night at a Scout meeting, my investiture at Gordon Park, the reaction of Mr. Carlisle when he found me cutting green wood, Waine Johnstone and I filling certain seniors’ boots with dung, and their rucksacks with rocks and their resident scorpions.
What I do remember very clearly, are the late 1970’s when the country was ravaged by war and economic sanctions. It would not have been very surprising if the 8th Bulawayo (Hillside) Scout Group had merely folded up during those difficult times. The fact that the 8th prospered during those years shows the degree of tenacity and dedication of our leaders.
Undoubtedly, the highlight of the late 1970~s was the introduction of Troop expeditions down to the Transvaal and Cape. At a time when camping in the Matopos was impossible, people such as Mr. (Bubbles) Cunningham and Norman Scott did their utmost to ensure that scouting in our Troop was not confined merely to Friday night meetings at the Scout Hall.
With the support of our Group Committee whose enthusiasm undoubtedly ensured the welfare of the 8th, Bubbles and Norman led the Troop on a number of expeditions to the Fanie Botha and Blyde River Canyon hiking trails. I still have visions of Waine Johnstone prowling the once sleepy town of Tzaneen dressed in pom-pom hat, campfire blanket and veldskoene, armed with a lethal whip and accompanied by such innocents as Peter Hartley, Glen Crisp and Duncan Smith. It is hardly surprising that shop-keepers closed for the day and mothers locked their daughters away when the bus-load of 8th Scouts arrived in town.
I recall the first Fanie Botha hike when snow fell atop Mount Anderson and the terrible cousins — Charles McCleary, Dudley Smith and Nigel Crisp — carved notches in their hiking sticks for every senior they downed with snowballs. Nights were spent around roaring log fires, drying out clobber and, in the case of Brett Fulton and Ian (Rocky) Stone, inviting half-asleep Scouts to sample their “fire-water”. I still have the scars in my mouth as a reminder.
Mark Shirley’s growing pains were a cause of some anxiety to Bubbles, as were Waine’s sporadic attacks of maleria/TB/black water fever, etc. At such times the latter, between melodramatic gasps and soliloquys, would organise stretcher-bearers to convey him to the next base.
The highlight of these trips was always the “last supper” held at a Louis Trichardt hotel. For fear of embarrassing certain Scouts who are now respected members of the community, I shall elaborate no further!
1980 saw the Troop’s last South African expedition being led by Norman Scott down to Cape Town. Remember the locals we conned into guiding us up Table Mountain, and who got left behind somewhere near the lower cable car station? I also recollect Stan Wilson’s frantic attempt to borrow some money. Yours truly particularly enjoyed the days spent around the Wine Estates. The others thought it very amusing, when, at a wine tasting session, I was unknowingly sampling the mixture of Stein and Rose and other debris out of the slop jar.
Despite the fact that after 1976 not much camping was done at Gordon Park for security reasons, Sunday usually involved choosing one’s weapon and driving Out in convoy to the Matopos. Weapons ranged from grandma’s derringer to father’s F. N. and I still marvel at the fact that we didn’t all accidentally knock each other off, although I recall one incident above the Leask with the Hofmeyers that made my whole life flash before me. (Editor’s Note: There was an A.D. in the cave from which some very white-faced Scouts returned to camp).
Other projects, besides driving Norman’s vehicle into Rhinos, over-turning his landrover and congregating at Rocky’s house to watch him “fly” off his roof using bamboo and his mother’s sheets as wings, which kept us busy during the late 70s, included Civil Defence, First Aid training and the building of the Nigel Theron patrol rooms. Remember the carbolic sludge monster!!
Numerous district camps were organised at Hillside Dams and C.B.C. and although this was very tame stuff, at least it gave Scouts a chance to get out under canvas.
The Cubs too were extremely active during those years and for the very first time began to camp under canvas. The Alelas did their utmost to maintain an interest in Cubbing by hiring buses and unleashing their brood in various places of interest in and around Bulawayo.
Of course those years were also very sad ones with Scouts loosing their lives while serving their country. The war also saw the tragic death of Mrs Hewitt our Akela who led the pack to a position of strength and superiority. Many of the Groups Leaders are the products of Mrs. Hewitt’s pack.
Thus, although my memories of the 8th dont stretch back to the 1930's (you will have to speak to Norman about those days), I know we are all better people for having adapted to and struggled through the 1970's. And if we are to toast anyone for the 8ths continued survival during those years lets toast those Scout and Cub Leaders who, despite call-ups, personal tragedies and uncertain times, refused to let the 8th sink into the morass of apathy and pessimism. Instead, they were determined to adopt alternative strategies and to strengthen the “OUT" in SCOUTING. Here's to those dedicated men and women for leading us through the 70s.
The Group Committee Today
L to R Back: Messrs. C.Jones, N.W.McNeilage, Group Scout Leader N.C.Scott, G.S.Ralphs, A.Fulton
Front: Mesdames I.Jones, J.Arrowsmith, G.Carr, M.Jones, P.Musgrave
Dads working on the first Scout Hall in 1936. This building served for over 20 years.
REMINISCENCES BY FORMER G.S.L. “DOBBIE” DOBSON
Wow! It is 19 years since I said goodbye to the 8th Bulawayo(Hillside) Scout Group, and I find I have forgotten the names of many people connected with Scouting in Bulawayo. I have also forgotten many events which occurred in those busy years, from 1959 to 1964!
I assumed the Group Scout Leader’s rank on finding the troop without an experienced Scout Leader.
For most of the 5 years I had to go it alone, except for a few months assistance from Mr. Crisp (also an ox-Pretoria Scout Leader of former years), who emigrated to New Zealand. Mr. Erith Harris, a student at the Teachers College, gave assistance before graduating, and is now Headmaster of Whitestones School.
Troop meetings were held on Friday evenings and Saturday afternoons for instruction and passing of tests for those boys not engaged in school or other sporting activities.
During those 5 years the troop consistently numbered between 40 and 60 keen, cheerful and friendly Scouts.
Smartness of bearing and Scout uniform were insisted upon and the Troop was often congratulated on its smart appearance. On one occasion we were requested, at short notice, to form a Guard of Honour for Sir Humphrey Gibbs, then Chief Scout of Rhodesia, at a ceremony and Scout gathering in Princess Margaret Park. The Chief Scout was impressed by the smart appearance, bearing and steadiness on parade of the Troop.
Scouting being an outdoor activity, good use was made of Gordon Park and camping there was a favourite pastime. The consistent camping and training in Gordon Park and the hiking in the far reaches of the Matopos together with the cycling from the City to the Park and return after camping, kept the Scouts fit and strong.
As a result, during a school holiday period, Troop Leader Dudley Smythe and Senior Scout Ian Dobson did a round the country cycle tour, totalling 2 400 kms.
Assistance was given each year by the Scouts and parents at the Trade Fair.
The break-up of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland in December, 1963, saw the commencement of emigration from the country and a number of Scouts had to leave the Troop when their families departed for distant lands.
The Hillside Troop has always been fortunate in having a splendid Group Committee, which raised funds and ensured the stability of the Troop. Among the many who assisted were Mrs. Scott, Mrs. Bundock and Mrs. Simon who made the attractive blue and red scarves which have been so proudly worn by scores of Scouts over the years.
Circumstances beyond my control obliged me to give up active Scouting in 1964, — how the years have sped away!
Good luck and happy days.
EDWARD (DOBBIE) DOBSON
The 8th’s high-powered intelligence system has traced the following past members to their lairs:
152 Basley Terrace, Valeriedene, Johannesburg 2195. Married ex-Hillside Guide. Have Scout son and Guide daughter.
DENZIL and TREVOR MAGLASHAN
In Johannesburg. Contactable through above.
36 Ashwood Drive, Clubview, Pietermaritzburg.
Kingwilliamstown. 2nd in this year’s Comrades’
Marathon. Married this month — N. Scott Bestman.
15, 11th Avenue, Summerstrand, Port Elizabeth
60001. With firm of Consulting Engineers. Into
deep-sea sailing. Offers floorspace.
12, Ridgeway Villas, Leipoldt Street, Ridgeway. Johannesburg 2091. Now a dad!
2, Kapok Road, Weltevreden Park Ext. 11, Johannesburg. Requires a “sitrep.”
Alias “Bubbles”, alias “Chromite”, Port Elizabeth.
Building things in Richards Bay.
Where the big decisions are made! The Patrol Leaders Council in action.
Clockwise: Norman Scott, Duncan Smith,Andy Blundell?,Clinton Jones, Peter Hartley,y?,Sean Fulton, Stan Wilson
Grand Prix hopefuls — the 1982 line—up. (do email in the names!)
A MESSAGE FROM FORMER G.S.L.
When I was asked to join the 8th as Group Scout Leader because there was a leader shortage. I thought this was a post which should not be too demanding of my time; also it would not expose my lack of skills. Well, it was not very long before I found that things were not as they should be. To put it mildly there were four problem areas: The Group Committee, the Scout Leaders, the Scouts and the Cub Pack. Each part was doing its best to pull in a different direction! A slightly deeper examination showed that the Cub Pack was sound for which I was much relieved. Cubs have never been my scene and if the late Mrs. Hewitt had not made up for my deficiencies, cubbing in the 8th would have been a disaster. A look at the Troop revealed a Troop Leader named Norman Scott who had confidence in himself but, with some justification, not much in anybody else. There were also some rather antagonistic Patrol Leaders.
The answer to the problem was to go back to fundamentals, i.e., to ensure that Scouting was for the Scout, so taking a firm grip on B.P.’s ample guide-lines, we set about livening up the Troop. This is a magic which always works. A Troop Training camp and a year of endeavour saw a change. The Scouts became active and proud of the Troop, the Pack fitted in, leaders began to come forward and the parents on the Group Committee made their efforts in the right direction. However, it is one thing to get things rolling. The real test is to keep them going! The leadership ranks had grown in number and had been strengthened by an enthusiastic Norman Scott, now an Assistant Scout Leader, so it was possible to mount some key events. Foremost among these was the Monex Expedition which was a service job based on active Scouting in the Matopos hills.
Monex really consolidated the position. Thereafter the Troop grew in numbers, in skills and in willingness to serve others. Its Scouting became active and wide-ranging. Individual achievements mounted; “Tramp” became its mouth-piece and the annual formal Fathers and Scouts Dinner became a unique event.
A visit to Cape Town by the Patrol Leaders set in train reactions which are still being
felt to this day.
Later, of course, the war disturbed things; active Scouting became less and less possible, and let us never forget the young men who made the supreme sacrifice who, so shortly before, had been Scouts in our ranks. The war and its aftermath proved one thing, namely that the key to a strong and healthy Scout Group is active Scouting by the Troop. As B.P. wrote, it is that very activity which enables the boy to find the path to upright manhood.
A smile is quite a funny thing.
It wrinkles up your face.
And when it’s gone you’ll never find its secret hiding place.
But far more wonderful it is, to see what smiles can do.
You smile at one, he smiles at you, and so one smile makes two.
And since a smile can do great good by cheering hearts of care,
Let’s smile at everyone we meet, for smiles go everywhere.
Tony Murphy and Ian Ritchie somewhere in the blue in the sixties
Thousands Of Hours In The Service Of The 8th
Mr. Alex Fulton, The Hall Warden, Looks Back
In the November of 1971 Mr. Bill Coffee, the then Warden, found himself on transfer to Salisbury and the Group Committee had to cast around for a volunteer to provide a service to effect continuity of an essential and integral part of the running of the 8th Scout Group facility; the care of their Hall and grounds. As I live in close proximity to the Hall, Mr. Jack Carlisle approached me to step into the breach. This was a challenge to my liking and I listed a series of improvements that would benefit the Group in many ways. First and foremost I had to consider ‘selling’ the Hall and its environs. It was a very suitable property for functions of many kinds and donations were therefore a priority of the first degree.
I made tables, fitted shelves and in due course 27 wooden trays came off my work bench. Tiles at the back and the side of the sink were fitted so that the walls could be kept clean. The next big step was to deal with all the loose parquet blocks. Over a lengthy period of time, 8 797 blocks were lifted, cleaned and re-sealed. This is an on-going exercise. The corrugated iron on the roof was showing signs of rust so a coat of high quality red roof paint was applied.
The kitchen was enlarged by creating an opening into the old store room. I took great pleasure in marking Out the entrance and removing the bricks that were in the way. Plaster here and there saw a well finished job. A stove and fridge, at low cost, were positioned and the many crates and cartons brought into the kitchen for functions could now be stacked in this new room. Functions gathered momentum and donations on a worthwhile scale became the order of the day with bookings in the diary a pleasant revelation. Unfortunately the bookings of yesteryear have sadly diminished due to emigration and the present high cost of parties.
Replacement window panes over the years have cost a tidy sum. New curtains and linings and roller towels for the toilets and kitchen were made and fitted by the Warden giving the Hall a more homely appearance. A cat-walk on the North, East and South sides of the Hall was laid in bricks to reduce mud and dirt from being brought into the building.
All toilet faults in the building are soon rectified without calling in plumbers.
All in all, it is a very interesting job and a daily visit is all that is required to ensure that every aspect is sound.
Thanks to Norman Scott and his boys, I am spared the need to climb up and clean the gutters which become choked due to the massive trees adjacent to the Hall. The Hall has recently been painted throughout and its appearance greatly improved.
As long as the spirit remains willing, I hope to continue serving the Chairman and Group Committee of the day, taking a load off their shoulders in the name of an excellent cause.
50th ANNIVERSARY HIGHLIGHTS
by Senior Scout Craig Yeatman
Our 50th Anniversary year has been filled with celebrations and achievements, worthy of the many Scouts who have served in the 8th Bulawayo over the years.
In January the “Design a Logo” competition was staged and Paul Musgrove’s design was adjudged the winner.
The first of the celebrations was the 50th Anniversary Group Church Parade held on the 10th February at the Hillside Church of the Ascension. The service doubled with the Baden Powell Commemoration service and this event was attended by Scouting dignitaries, parents, friends, Cubs and Scouts. Later on in February both the Cubs and Scouts won their respective sections in the District Swimming gala, setting a trend for the rest of the year — there was to be no stopping the 8th in 1983!
At the first ever Matopos National Parks Gymkhana, our Scouts manned the race entry office, the first-aid unit, cool-drink and hot-dog stalls, as well as assisting with the track preparation. This service strengthened the bond between the 8th and the National Parks and was reciprocated by numerous kindnesses from the Park authorities later in the year.
On the 9th April a commemorative Banquet was held. The 108 guests included Mr. Bragge. a founder member of the 8th. The highlight of the evening was the cutting of a special birthday cake, which had been beautifully iced by Mrs. Fulton, one of the pillars of the 8th Group.
To finish off an excellent month in traditional 8th style, we won the Colin Turner Memorial trophy for pioneering held at Gordon Park, with the construction of a functional drawbridge.
During May the Annual Tramp Grand Prix was held at Avocet Lane, and this year included Cubs in the competition. Entries were larger than in previous years and the afternoon even saw the completion of an event for “pioneering” go-carts.
On the 5th June two scouts from the 8th were invested into the Gordon Park crew, viz., P/L Andy Blundell and S/S Craig Yeatman. The 19th June witnessed a gruelling “Rolling-stone” challenge from the 8th to the 11th Riverside troop. The challenge consisted of five separate timed events — cycling, a raft-race, cross-country running and a long-distance wheelbarrow race with (wheelbarrows)! The 8th won in fine style, thus adding to its stock of trophies for 1983.
On 25th June the special Anniversary Group Tour to Hwange and the Victoria Falls was held.
At the beginning of July our Troop Leader, Alan Savin, left for the XV World Jamboree in Canada. Alan, the only representative from Matabeleland, carried with him the name and tradition of the 8th Bulawayo and added strength to our image as worldleaders in Scouting. His trip included the famous Calgary Stampede, as well as a visit to the Haarlem Jamborette in Holland.
From the 8th—10th July the Join-in-Jamboree on the Air was held in the Matopos and our Cubs won the Rowallan Pennant for the first time, having been runners-up for many years.
The annual Troop Training camp included a day spent with the National Parks ranger learning to track, game-counting and shooting. The camp culminated in a Group Campfire at which Patrol Leader Peter Hartley was made Troop Leader.
The Arnold Carnegie Assegai competition was held on the 17th and 18th September at Gordon Park and the surrounding area, and our team, led by T/L Peter Hartley, won by a clear 400 point margin, gaining 1 292 points out of a possible 1 500.
Evening attendances have averaged 90% and the size of the Group is expanding weekly as youngsters join the ranks of both Cubs and Scouts.
In December we will be sending two Scouts to the Senior Scout Adventure in Witzenberg Mountains of R.S.A.
Thus our 50th Anniversary Year has been a very special one!
The Role Of The 8th In Developing
The 8th Bulawayo has taken a large and active part in developing Gordon Park, especially in the last seven years.Happy days.
When first I went out to Gordon Park in 1978 the 8th were already joyfully working away. They were busy constructing new water tanks at the Leask. These were built to augment the water supply because of the ever-increasing number of people using the Park. They worked hard but always had time for the odd mud fight, water fight, etc.
Once the tanks were completed we started the much bigger project of building “The Lodge”. Messrs. Scott and Carlisle had drawn up the plans. When I first saw the bare foundations, I thought: “This is never going to get finished.” But the walls got higher, then the windows and rooms appeared and this really built up the spirit in us. An average of 15 Scouts helped on the building work each Sunday. None of us juniors (we were called piglets) would have missed a Sunday for anything.
During the mornings we worked like dogs and in the afternoons we would do something adventurous or dangerous.
The 8th is a big, happy family and laughs and works at the same time. The piglets would always be fooling around and getting up to mischief. It became a tradition for shoes suddenly to be found going round and round in the cement mixer, to the disgust of Mr. Carlisle.
Slowly the structure took shape and after many years of hard work it was completed and opened on the 24th April, 1982, and named the Naomi Conolly Lodge. It was very rewarding to look at it and say “Wow, just think, it was built by a bunch of Scouts and 95% of them were members of the 8th.”
Now other development work goes on at the Park and I hope always will.
TROOP LEADER AND G.P. CREW MEMBER
Pete Tipler (or Wayne Jolly?) and Rob (Little) Blundell building a shelter out at Gordon Park.
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Have any books to display here? Do email them in...
With thanks to Tony Klein for sending this magnificent old Tramp in!
And for adding names to people in photos:- Colin Smith, Graham Williams
The 8th Bulawayo (Hillside) Group express their sincere thanks and appreciation to all advertisers and donors who made this commemorative issue of "TRAMP" possible:
Graham Buhop Motors; Justin Smith (Pharmacy); National Sewing Machines Bulawayo; National Books of Zimbabwe; Bidulphs (removals); Denyer Motors; Sullivans Engineering; National Foods Ltd; Grandma's Haberdashery; Rennies Shipping and Airfreight; Samuel Osborn (Pvt) Ltd (Tools etc); Merlin Towels; Beasleys gifts; Baldwins Steel (Pvt) Ltd; Haggie Wire & Rope Ltd; Cleminson & Plaskit (Steel foundry); Willsgrove Ware Pottery; Umtali Leather (Pvt) Ltd; Ellams (Office Stationery); Rathams Engineering; G&D Shoes; Malindela Service Station (Pvt) Ltd; Golden Spur (Resturant); Photo Art; Dulux Paint; Panelrite (Pvt) Ltd; Roben Motors (Pvt) Ltd; Douglas Hadfield & Sons;