25th Cambridge: Babraham, Abington and Hildersham

Cambridge District Scout Archive

This Troop ran from 1928 until about 1934 and the orders of the names vary in different sources.    The record book for this Troop details 43 Scouts in three patrols, Peewit, Bulldog and Fox; their badges and camps and reasons for leaving.

They met at ‘The Lodge’, Abington, a large house with several outbuildings.  It is not clear whether the SMs were the owners.  No clear link to shooting skills has been established.

Badges

Weekly attendance is not recorded and as many Scouts ‘dropped off’ in attendance the length of active Scouting is unclear.  No one became a ‘First Class Scout’ during this time although some came near, 17 ‘Second Class Scouts’ were awarded.  Only five different Proficiency badges are recorded 12 Ambulanceman, 9 Pioneer, 7 Marksman, 3 Cyclist and 3 Farmer.  The last two appear to be later additions to the Troop skills.  No cords or Thongs were awarded.  The first badges were signed off by the ADC Slater and CC Dr Wilson.  One Scout passed his marksman badge annually as required.

The Troop camped on at least three occasions and had a Duke of Connaught team of marksmen and in 1930 the 25th came second in the senior section behind the 45th Nottingham who were the pre-eminent shooting Scout Troop of the era.

Joining

The age of joining was very variable, between 10 and 18, the earlier listings generally 16 reducing over the run of the book.  The troop was not initially fed by a Wolf Cub pack and most had no previous experience of Scouting.  Four are recorded as moving on from a pack and one transferred from the 10th Cambridge.

Leaving

Leavers are largely categorised as moving on in Scouting, leaving for work or moving away and variations on ‘not keen’, ‘dropped out’ and drifted away.  To one scout left when it was suggested that he should leave, one ‘High minded and unreliable’ was ‘kicked out‘.

Other observations include ‘quite a sound fellow’, ‘fat and a little lazy’ but later ‘did well’, ‘well meaning but rather stupid’, ‘all right at bottom but made a mollycoddle by his parents’ and ‘Troublesome,  Good chap though often difficult’.

The jobs they moved to were not listed except ‘Joined the Tank Corps’, ‘joined naval training ship’.  The difficulty of attending whilst in a job in Cambridge or with late hours was recorded.  One is recorded as not attending since leaving school.

Uniform

There are two mentions of returning uniform on leaving which suggests that uniform was provided by the Troop for at least some. 

JWR Archivist Sept 2020