MORE than 400 people packed into Murrays Lane on Sunday to grace the grand opening of Byfleet’s much anticipated new Scout building.
Among the guests were Woking Mayor and Mayoress, Derek and Rosemary McCrum, and Jonathan Lord MP. Unable to make it in person, adventurer, author, TV presenter and Chief Scout Bear Grylls was very much present in spirit, and sent his apologies along with a signed photo to young Adam Burgess who had invited him.
Scout Chairman Dorothy Farrant kicked off proceedings with a warm welcome in glorious sunshine and the Rev John McCabe blessed the new premises, saying the achievements of those who had brought the project to fruition could truly be called a miracle.
Group Scout Leader Linda Plunkett told the story of the project and thanked all those who had made the Byfleet Scout Group Centre possible. Councillor McCrum – himself a Scout Leader – unveiled the plaque of the 1st Byfleet Scout Group Outdoor Activity Centre.
He was also among those renewing their Promises, standing alongside Scouts, Cubs, Beavers, Explorer Scouts and Assistant District Commissioner Brian Pinto.
Flags were raised and the oldest former member of the Byfleet group, Trevor Ledger, 78 and a Queen’s Scout, while youngest member Wesley Brown cut a celebration cake.
Assistant District Commissioner Kevin Spencer awarded Gold Badges to Henry Boast and Charlie Silver, while Mark Hooking handed the Queen’s Scout Trophy he’d won 40 years ago to Katie Stephenson. The event was topped off with a feast of cakes and refreshments.