Scout and Guide Scarf Colours

Cambridge District Scout Archive

The clear identification and provision of the colours envisioned or required for a scarf has not always been straightforward. Early attempts at a ‘sky blue’ were compared with an overcast day in Liverpool. A formal and fixed chart is of great use, even if they vary between manufacturers.

The Cambridge Scout Shop held two sets of scarf colour swatches, one clearly Scout colours, the other presumably Guide colours.  From context they are from around 2012.

ScoutScout No.Written notesGirl Guide
Gold21Same as  g/gGold
Black2 Same as  g/gBlack
Sky blue3Same as  g/gCambridge
Emerald green4Same as  g/gEmerald
Grey5Same as  g/gSilver grey
Brown6Same as  g/g missing
Lemon8Same as  g/gBunting yellow
Maroon9Same as  g/g missing
Fellowship*Same as  g/g(cyan)                 missing
Navy blue10Same as  g/gNavy
Orange11Saffron for g/gSaffron
Purple12Same as  g/gPurple  
Royal blue13Same as  g/gRoyal
Beaver*Same as  g/gTurquoise
Scarlet14Same as  g/gScarlet
Scout Green15Same as  g/gScout Green
Dark Red17Peony g/g(peony)              missing
Green18Mid green for g/g(mid green)      missing
White20Same as  g/gWhite

The notes are written on the Scout swatch card, linking Scout and Guide colours, although some names vary.   Visually the swatches do match in colour and material.  Some colours are missing from the GG swatch or the swatches are not contemporary.  Those in brackets are referred to on the Scout swatch but missing on the Guide swatch.  The Scout swatch is mounted on a card and apparently complete, those of Fellowship and Beaver having no number but in place.

From Cambridge point of view the naming of Sky blue as Cambridge blue is of note.  Cambridge scarf colours tend to avoid the use of Cambridge blue as a term, although it is frequently used.

The number 1, 16 and 19 are not used on this card and have not yet been identified.

JWR Archivist Sept 2022