OVER 190 scouts and leaders from the Woking area came together to ensure a fun-filled weekend for children with special needs at Woodlarks Campsite in Farnham.

The 34th Handycamp was a nursery-themed event with pupils from special needs schools including, Freemantles and The Park schools in Woking, Abbey school in Farnham, Gosden House in Bramley and Portesbery school in Camberley.

The 35 children with special needs aged 10 to 16 years old camped with 50 Explorer Scouts aged 14 to 17 years old supported by over 80 leaders, including teachers from the various schools.

All the youngsters took part in activities such as climbing and abseiling on a huge three-face wall specially built by PTG Scaffolding, with HSS Southern in Old Woking supplying some of the safety fencing and lighting.

They also tried their hand at backwoods cooking over open fires, air rifle shooting, kayaking and rafting on the River Wey and constructing model aeroplanes from wood which they then flew through Olympic-style rings on a specially made launching pad.

The camp was funded by the Chobham-based Children with Special Needs Foundation, St Faith’s, and the Surrey Army Cadet Force, also received donations from Roberts Butchers in St Johns, Tenakers Farm Shop in Chobham, in addition to funding from Woking Borough Council.

During the weekend, Woking’s Mayor Cllr Beryl Hunwicks visited the camp and experienced the thrill and enjoyment being had by everyone said Brian Pinto, District Explorer Scout Commissioner, Woking.

“The explorer scouts are buddied with the pupils from the local schools, on a one to one or two to one basis, and look after their buddies for the whole weekend, camping and enjoying the activities in patrols.”

He added: “The rain on Saturday did not dampen any spirits, in fact it was the opposite, with lots of fun and laughter from all involved.”

For the full story get the 10 October edition of the News & Mail