Laying foundations of camp

editorial image

WHEN the Barrwood Trust was established the idea was to ensure the growth and development of Scouting within the area.

In this week’s column we look at how the foundations were laid for the Barrwood of 2018.

For many years the woods offered members an opportunity to learn new skills by getting back to basics.

This came about when the decision was taken in December 1921 to create a patrol leaders’ training camp and, four months later, a working party, toiling over a number of weekends, marked out an HQ, built a museum and excavated a washing pool.

Over the following years there were further PL training camps, county flag competition and Scouters’ weekends.

Add to these, delegations from Denmark, France, Rhodesia, Australia and New Zealand, training for Girl Guiders and a dress rehearsal for the national rally to be held at Ibrox and there is little wonder the need for more campsites was a constant demand.

But, before that could happen, there was the little matter of clearing the bracken – something which still happens today. And there was also the question of an HQ.

Up until 1927 this was a tent enclosed by a birch tree fence to keep the cattle and sheep away plus there had always been a policy of having no permanent buildings on the ground.

However, it was felt an HQ would increase the usefulness of the place.

Money was raised from two dances in Larbert and the hut was built by Scouters who also carried all the materials and equipment to the site.

Once the hut was up, plans for a swimming pool emerged. While a variety of locations were discussed it was finally decided to site it to the right of the main path, where the caving complex now exists.

Once again, the work was carried out by Scouters and Rovers who began digging in 1926 and 27 and in 1932 the clay dam was completed. Two years later the water supply did not last the summer and a plan to take water from the reservoir to the pool was put into operation. Needless to say, sheer hard work made that happen too.