Well the census is complete for another year. Our District Secretary (Linda Baddeley) has, as in previous years, co-ordinated it all along with the collection of Form 6s. Through her hard work and that of all the Group Scout Leaders and Sharon Whittlestone (collating Explorer info) we were one of the first Districts to get all relevant information to the County.

Thanks to all involved.

Purely in number terms, we are a little down from last year. This is not surprising as there have been two Cub Packs that had to close in 2012 (Newcastle School and Westlands). It is very pleasing, however to be able to report that there are already plans to reopen the Westlands Pack and I have sent Gilwell notice to re-register the Group at Edenhurst School because there are solid plans to restart a pack there. Both new packs will hopefully have youngsters before the summer.

Looking through the census returns – it is also pleasing to note a continued increase within the Explorer section.

Not noticeable via the census but certainly noticeable “on the ground”, as it were – is a continued increase in the use of valuable Young Leaders in all sections (It is now much more the “norm” to visit a Beaver Colony, Cub Pack or Scout Troop and see part of the programme being run by Young Leaders).

The recent formal election of a Newcastle Network Executive is also a pleasure to report. Just so you know – they are called the Narwhal Network and Jon Mycock is the Executive Chair.

Steve Broadhurst
District Commissioner