Cambridge District Scout Archive

Histon Scout Troops and Groups have had many names and numbers. The core Scout Group has a clear history from 1943 and possibly existed unbroken from 1929. The records of their WW2 shift from ‘Histon’ to ‘Impington Village College’, when it was within the short lived Mid Cambridgeshire, are lost to Cambridge District records. It is not entirely clear that the group was continuously active.

The later amalgamation with Girton and the rapid return to the location and name of Histon with active sections suggests a temporary break in facilities or leadership rather than the spirit of the Group. It maybe best considered as an amalgamation not an absorption, despite the lack of a joint name.


  • Histon Peace Scouts <1910 – 1912
  • 4th Cambridge District (Histon). 1912 – 1915


  • Histon Lone Patrol 1922 – 1923


  • 35th Cambridge (Histon) 1929 – 1934
  • Histon 1935 –

Moving to

  • 35th Cambridge (Impington Village College) 1943
  • Impington Village College – 1948
  • 56th Cambridge (Impington Village College)1949
  • 51st Cambridge (Girton) 1949 – 1953
  • 51st Cambridge (Histon) 1953 – 1958
  • 1st Histon 1958 –


  • 35th Cambridge (Histon Salvation Army). 1957 – 1962

Histon Peace Scouts 1910 – 1912

An independent Troop was formed called Peace Scouts ahead of the wider Peace Scout movement. They were not registered with any organisation. The founder and SM was

  • Douglas Bowles

They were later inspected and much praised by Sir Francis Vane of the British Boy Scouts and Peace Scouts and took his name. All the Peace Scouts in Cambridge were absorbed into what was then known as Baden Powell scouts (to differentiate) by 1912.

See Structure/ Sections/ Other Scout organisations in Cambridge

4th Cambridge District (Histon).  1912 – 1915

Histon switched allegiance and are listed in the 1912 Annual report (which may have appeared in early 1913) with D Bowles as SM. Certainly by January 1913 had become the 4th Cambridge District (Baden Powell’s) Troop of the Baden Powell Boy Scouts.

The Troop, however, disbanded as SM Bowles’ health deteriorated and business pressures increased.  They merged with the Histon Boys Brigade. 


Histon Lone Patrol 1922 – 1923

One of the very few Scouts and Patrols labelled ‘Lone’ in the District. The term is usually used in the context of being unable to regularly meet with other scouts or being remote from the core District. Formed in 1922 by P/L E W Allworthy as a controlled troop, the Rev F. Allworthy of Histon Vicarage was the Chaplain. It had the IHQ number of 9848 and recorded 6 scouts on the registration document. E W Allworthy was at Christ’s College Cambridge as a first year student later in 1922 and living in town. The Patrol did record census figures for one year in 1922. The patrol was recorded as defunct by 4th November 1923 with the note ‘loss of interest’.

Oddly the later local markings on the registration document label the patrol in a separate category outside the then standard Cambridge or Cambridge District Troop lists without a number but simply as H, presumably as Histon.


35th Cambridge (Histon) 1929 – 9749

Registered 8th May 1929 with the IHQ number 9749. it was an Open Group with one leader and 11 Scouts on the original document. The only named leader was

  • Henry Augustus Blake. GSM

Census returns give

  • Scouts. 1929 -1934
  • Cubs. 1930 – 1934

Histon 1935 – ? – 1943 9749

In 1935 Cambridge District divided into four Districts. Histon moved into the District that was initially named North Cambridge, then in rapid succession East Cambridge and Mid Cambridgeshire.

The name became that of the Location not Xth Cambridge (Location), as did all the other transferred Groups. The IHQ number stayed the same. Census returns and records for Mid Cambridgeshire are lost. At some point before it returned to Cambridge District in 1943 it changed name or stopped and changed name to Impington Village College. The continuity of IHQ number suggests a limited gap if any.

35th Cambridge (Impington Village College) 1943 – IHQ number 9749

This title given once, on the first return of Groups from Mid Cambridgeshire to Cambridge District, appears to be an anomaly, possibly retro-labelling, recognizing, implicitly, Impington Village College as a continuation of 35th Cambridge (Histon) but returning the ‘Cambridge ‘ number ahead of the general re-naming of all ex Mid Cambridgeshire Groups. As can be seen when, later, the returned groups were given a Cambridge number IVC became not the old 35th, but the new 56th. It has the same IHQ number as the 1929 group which strongly suggests that if there was a break in continuity between Histon and Impington Village College it was considered an acceptable hiatus and not a break in continuity.

Impington Village College 1943 – 1948

The Group is usually named Impington Village College during this period. It was under this name that it was transferred back to Cambridge District during WW2 as the Mid Cambridgeshire District lost momentum.

Census returns for Cambridge District from the old Mid Cambridgeshire Groups restart for one year.

  • Scouts. 1948

From School History, Cambridgeshire Collection.

Impington Village College Scout Troop practicing with fire fighting equipment WW2.

56th Cambridge (Impington Village College). 1949

When the return became permanent Impington Village College was given a Cambridge number.

Census returns are found for one year

  • Scouts. 1949

51st Cambridge (Girton). 1949 – 1953. HQ number. 26641

51st Cambridge (Girton) opened in 1948.

In 1949 56th Cambridge (Impington Village College) amalgamated with 51st Cambridge (Girton). The 51st Cambridge was registered in 1948 as 51st Cambridge (Girton). The only known address for a meeting place for this Girton Group was the Village College Grounds Histon. This address was possibly in use nearer 1953. The Histon location probably influenced the change in catchment area and the change of name to Histon in 1953.

A new Girton Scout Group 10th Cambridge(Girton) opened 1957.

51st Cambridge (Histon) 1953 – 1958 HQ number. 26641

The Group was renamed on 8th March 1953 as 51st Cambridge (Histon).

The census reports give us

  • Cubs. 1949 – 1951 and 1955 – 1958
  • Scouts 1949 – 1958
  • Rovers 1949

The Rover is probably a supporter/ leader, very likely from the University.

1st Histon. 1958 – HQ number. 26641

The registered name change to 1st Histon occurred on 11th June 1958.

Census returns continue in 1960, the missing 1959 probably no more than an administrative blip.

  • Cub 1960 – 1984
  • Scouts 1960 – 1984

1973  new pack was formed

In 1983/1984 Cambridge District divided into three Districts. Histon moved into Cambridge: Crafts Hill and the Census results held by the archives end.

35th Cambridge (Histon Salvation Army). 1957 – 1962. HQ number 33241

This Group was a separate entity from the concurrent 51st Cambridge (Histon) / 1st Histon with HQ number 33241. It reuses the old Histon number (35th), as was the standard practice. It may be that the anticipated or ensuing confusion initiated the renaming of the 51st Cambridge as ‘Histon’.

A Controlled Group it met at the SA Citadel.

It returned Census figures for

  • Cubs. 1958, 1960 – 1961

JWR Archivist July 2022