From an article in the Kettering Evening Telegraph, 7 November 1994, presented by Margaret Craddock
A Good Old Scout
Jack began his association with the Scouts on November 5,1924 in Finedon. He was nine.
He said: ”Ever since I can remember I had wanted to be in the scouts and tried to involve myself with their activities at every opportunity but they always told me I was too young.
“The 1st Finedon St Mary’s Scouts met at the side of our house and on the bonfire night just before my ninth birthday they let me join in. That night I was enrolled as a Wolf Cub.”
Jack moved into the Scouts when he was eleven and became a Scout leader at 21.
His first trip abroad took him to
In 1936 he was asked by the District Commissioner to start a group at Higham Ferrers which is still going strong.
Still a leader at Finedon and Higham Ferrers, he was again asked in 1940 to start a new group at Burton Latimer with 12 members. It was that group, now with 140 members, with which he has been involved ever since.
He said: “From the very start I wanted to see the 1st Burton Latimer St Mary’s Scouts permanently housed with its own equipment and a real identity.”
And Jack has achieved everything he set out to do together with his late wife, Edna who was leader of the cubs from those early days.
After his return from service with the Royal Artillery in the Second World War he found his Scout group had swollen in numbers from 22 to 48.
He said: “We had acquired a number of evacuees and had every religion and denomination imaginable.”
It was time to find a permanent base.
Soon after the war the group bought a wooden hut for £5. The Harpur family gave the group land. Later the group bought two old prefabricated buildings for £500 and joined them together and eventually raised enough money to build the brick Scout headquarters they now call home.
For the past 16 years Jack has been proud to be associated with Burton Latimer Scout Band which he said was one of the finest in the country.
In 70 years in the movement, Jack admits to a few disappointments but looks back on the development of Burton Latimer Scouts since their inception in 1940 with pride.
Jack said: “When Lord Baden-Powell started the movement in 1908 he must have known its importance could do nothing but grow.
“Children today need organisations like the Scouts to give them a sense of belonging, loyalty and discipline more than ever.”
Jack is now still actively involved in the running of Burton Latimer Scouts and is vice president of Wellingborough and District and the
Perhaps his proudest boast is that his six-year old great grandson, Jacob, has just enrolled in the Beavers, the most junior section of the Scouts.