Snowy Oliver

Cambridge District Scout Archive

Arthur Oliver of the 23rd and 28th Cambridge was a member of the Rover Crew that participated or were mentioned in the Evercircular letters of 1939 -1944. He was a member of the Wolf Cubs in 1926 when Les Chapman recalls ‘I remember bringing Snowy (who was in the Cubs) home on the bar of my bike’ from Coldham Common.

Snowy rowed No 7 and Bow in Cambridge Scouts Boat Club second boat around 1938 – 39.

He elected to join the RAF and was frustrated in having to ‘wait until called’. He was stationed for a while at Suttonbridge before going abroad. Snowy, like a number of 23rd Evercircular Scouts, trained as a signaller, for a time near Blackpool. Those who could not achieve the required rate were transferred to the army. He was often mentioned in the Evercircular but made few entries moving through training quickly before being sent abroad.

Snowy was later involved in running the Scout shop with Ted Russell and later John Chambers.

Snowy, rarely Arthur in the archives, went grey/white at an early age hence the nickname. In the 23rd the presence of an older Arthur (Sansom) may have reinforced this nickname. His son Geoff Oliver of the 28th and Sir John Cockcroft VSU, also went grey early.

Mr Oliver Senior (Snowy’s father) made the offer of help to the 23rd in October 1942 ‘in any way he could – He admits he knows little but wants to learn’. In 1943 ‘Mr Oliver – Snowy’s father, who was helping us in the troop, spent most of the days with us in camp – this is the first time I have ever heard the …………..? of a parent of Old Scouts in Cambridge.’

Obituary by W T Thurbon

JWR Archivist Mar 2019