|The History of the Ockendon Scout and Guide Group|
The Group was formed in February 1962, when three leaders from 2nd South Ockendon, Bob Fall, Olive Yeldham(Clay) and Roger Clay, together with some of the committee headed by Tom Calver-Richards, decided to move on and form the 1st Ockendons Scout Group. Bob Fall moved to Gainsborough in 1963 and Bill Rhoads took the helm.
Work on the Groups Headquarters, rear of Nelson Road, was already underway, thanks to a Peppercorn Lease of one shilling per year for the land, being granted by Mr. Coe-Welch and the Group moved into their new home at the end of 1962,with a Wolf Cub Pack, Scout Troop and Senior Scout Troop.
Numbers fell in the late 1960s when the prefabs, built in the late 1940s, transforming the village into a small town, were demolished to make way for the present housing.
The Group flourished with the influx of the new people and in 1971 were joined by Brownies and Guides all meeting initially in the Nelson Road HQ. until a second HQ (one of the now redundent contractors buildings) was secured for us by Dave Loader, a parent. The Brownies, Guides and now two Cub Packs moved into the new HQ .The Group became a joint Scout and Guide Group with Mrs. Joyce Stock steering the merger for the Guides. In 1981 our Venture Scout Unit was started and this was followed by Ranger Guides.
The new HQ was in Quince Tree Close adjoining the council Playscheme building. These buildings were twice damaged by fire and despite the Groups considerable investment in our building, the council refused us permission to remain and refurbish.
The Group then secured the plot on Tamarisk Road/South Road and worked hard at fund raising. The whole Group again moved back into Nelson Road while work went ahead with our third HQ .The Group was able to use the new building before it was fully completed and officially opened by Cllr. Mrs. Margaret Jones and her husband Cllr Merlyn Jones in 1991.
The Group has always enjoyed good parent support, without which it could not have served the local community as well as it has. Tribute must be paid to the numerous parents and friends, who have given up much of their time to join in and make it a success.
Special mention must be made of those who have served as Leaders in all capacities giving so much time, evenings and weekends, for others. The committee members, Chairmen for keeping control and driving things on, Secretaries for keeping the records, communicating with all and sending hundreds of letters and Treasurers for the watchful eye making sure our money is well spent.
To everyone currently helping to steer the Group to make an important contribution to the development of the young people of the area, we thank you.