Cubmaster by any other name

Cambridge District Scout Archives

The Jungle Book names used by many Cub leaders are not mandatory in the UK.  As yet no alternative naming systems have been identified in Cambridge Archives.

The Scout website A-Z of Scouting Terms lists Akela – Traditional name used in some cub packs for the cub scout leader’   and in the “Introduction to the cub scout section”  Some Packs continue to (use the Jungle Book). They use characters and events as an inspiration for the names of Leaders (such as Akela for the Cub Scout Leader) and activities.’


In the beginning Wolf Cub Leaders held the position of Cubmaster or Lady Cubmaster.

The following list of names is from a very early Seeonee Pack meeting (a District Pack of Cubmasters)

1930                A writer on Wolf Cub topics in The Scouter 1930 signed themselves ‘Brown Tip’. As seen above it is a Jungle Book name, as is Golden Quill. Iki is more usually spelt Ikki. Miss Issacson (above) came to be named and spelled Ikey (Eye – key) and I have come across another leader using the same spelling.

1930                A letter in the Scouter decries the use of the hideous term Cub Mistress and urges the use of the correct term Lady Cubmaster.  Further they stress the term Cubber is meaningless, all Cubmasters being Scouters which is anyone who holds a warrant from the Boy Scout Association.

1966                The Jungle book theme was specifically retained at the Advance report changed the name from Wolf Cub to Cub Scout.  Cubmaster became Cub Scout Leaders.

Cambridge Archives

In the 1920’s the registration forms contain an uncorrected self identification as ‘Cubmistress’ by Winifred Mary Denham of Q Pack Landbeach.

In 1924 Veronica W Vincent describes herself as Cubmaster and Brown Owl. It is not clear from the documents if she was running a combined Cub/ Brownie pack. C Pack (letters were used for packs not attached to a numbered troop) was based at Windermere House school.

No incidents of other naming systems have been recorded in the Cambridge Archives.  Not all Packs are lead by Akela’s and both Shere Khan and King Louis have been used.   Other names have been carried over as leaders step between sections.

JWR Archivist Jan 2019