14th Cambridge (St Columba)

Cambridge District Scout Archive

A Good, rough, untidy lot

1912 -1943

The records for this troop are sparse. The following is from books by E F B Macalister and R B Knox.

The Scout Troop is mentioned as gaining 26 members in its first year 1911, camping at Hauxton House Farm in 1913 (19 No.) and later camping alongside the Perse at Houghton Mill.

It is given, somewhat ambiguously, that on camping at Hauxton ‘the Scouts ‘ tested the minds of the villagers and were assured that out occupation of the district was not likely to be disrupted’.

They survived the war ‘under the eager leadership of Mr. J Stanley Ellis’. Mr. Ellis was a medical student, Miss Laidlaw was Lady CM. Miss Laidlaw was District Badge Sec fr many years. The Church supported the York Street Mission which also had a short lived Troop.

  • J Stanley Ellis SM
  • Miss Laidlaw CM

Reveille! a single issue magazine from the District gives

14th (St. Columba’s) The Troop owes everything to Erie Curwain who won the Cornwell Badge 18 months ago, and to their fairy godmother, Miss Laidlaw. Now they are going ahead under S.M. F. Balfour-Melville, who has started a Rover Patrol, to which we wish all luck. Mr. Edge was back with them for a few months. The Curwain tradition of camping hasn’t been allowed to lapse: they had week-end Camps every month last spring; and they finished up last term with going to Babraham. They are also fairly successful in revising elementary work by inter-Patrol competitions.

See also Eric Curwain – ‘Erie’ was a typographical error repeated later.

14th from c 1917/18 Eric Curwain third from right back row. Presumably Miss Laidlaw Lady Cub Master centre.

The Troop reported Scouts from 1921 to 1927, Cubs Scouts and rovers in 1928 and Cubs and Scouts from 1929 to 1938. There are no records for 1939 and 1940 and only Scouts remained in 1940. It is registered as being ‘In Abeyance’ in 1943.

A strong Pack and Troop, but without many early archive details or stories.

DC H Mallett made some notes concerning the Troop probably in the later 1930’s. He described the Troop as ‘A good, rough, untidy lot’ and the activities being more games than Scouting. However, they considered themselves Scouts and able to do what any other troops could achieve.

  • A W Casey SM Active from 1925
  • F T Carse Warranted 22/5/1931
  • A C Knightly (also) Warranted 22/5/1931
  • R Squires (ex PL)
  • D Weighton CM
  • A Rolfe CM 1936

JWR Archivist May 2022