Scouts and Remembrance


I went to my local war memorial for the parade yesterday and noticed that, after the ACF, the largest contingent on parade were from the Boy Scouts. I have nothing against the Scouts - an admirable organisation in many ways, not least in that it forces paedophiles to wear some kind of uniform so we can all identify them - but I'm puzzled about their connection with Remembrance Sunday, other than they wear vaguely para-military uniforms and carry standards which look a bit military. Joking apart, this isn't a dig at them, but I'm curious about why they blag their way into so many of these parades.
I was a beaver, then a scout, prior to joining the cadets, then the army.

Instead of questioning their reason for parading, we should be applauding them. This year at my local church, appart from myself and a fe other vets, the second largest turn out after the RLC from Kineton, was the scouts and guides. Every single one of them knew the reason they were parading on a sunday morning, some laid their wreaths after the Army and Vets and others were proud to carry their groups Standards.

Not 100% sure about links to the forces, but after the dismal showing and lack of respect from your average joe, we should be more than happy that youngsters are being taught about the sacrifices given by so many and want to do their part.

If we stop educating the young, how long do you think we'll keep remembering after the rest of us are gone??


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Well, they were a paramilitary organisation when they started ("Scouting for Boys" - great title) and developed, I beleive, from B-P's experiences using boys as Scouts in the Boer War (Siege of Mafeking?)

As such, even though they are now a bunch of strange chaps in long trousers, and pretty unmilitary, they do have a track record here.
I don't think it is a bad thing C_Punk, at least by their presence it shows that kids today are still being taught to respect Remembrance Day, something a lot of them will carry with them through life...
Having been a scout for a while (premature retirement before being asked to leave for 'A cider & firework party too far'), I would say that the Scout movement is OK for such things.

It is a national, uniformed youth movement that tries to set a standard of behaviour and respect for Queen & Country. They are the only group who always have a parade for the patron saint (I presume this goes in all constituent parts of UK). They were at such parades long before the ACF and others were raised.

Tradition matey !.

Presumable because a number of them were killed while on duty e.g as members of the Boy Scout Messenger Service who used to run messages between the ARP posts.

Their losses during the blitz were mention during Sunday’s parade at the cenotaph by the commentator.

I remember being in the Cub Scouts and one of my proudest memories of a young kid was that of a Remembrance Parade. I suspect you will find that a good many of the career Soldiers. Sailors or RAF would have started out on this sort of fashion.
Proud then,
Proud now.

Don’t knock them, as they may well be the ones in the Army in 10 years time, so that it will be our turn to sleep safely at home.
I'm almost sure that the commentator stated that the Scout movement had received 80 (?) gallantry awards during WWII, mainly for actions during the Blitz.
Just a quick one from the MOD website:


According to one visitor the War Office was a nightmare in those early days: it resembled Liverpool Street station on the evening of rainless Bank Holiday. The numbers were swollen by the employment of Boy Scouts as messengers. Callwell illustrated what he described as an excellent innovation, with the following story:

‘A day or two after joining I wanted to make the acquaintance of a colonel, who I found was under me in charge of a branch, a new hand like myself, but whose apartment nobody in the place could indicate. A War Office messenger despatched to find him came back emptyhanded. Another War Office messenger sent on the same errand on the morrow proved no more successful. On the third day I summoned a boy scout into my presence – a very small one – and commanded him to find that colonel and not to come back without him. In about ten minutes’ time the door was flung open and in walked the scout, followed by one of the biggest sort of colonels. “I did not know what I had done or where I was being taken”, remarked the colonel, “but the boy made it quite clear that he wasn’t going to have any nonsense; so I thought it best to come quietly”’ (1).


Scouts were used as runners, fire watchers, medics and other trades within the UK as well as being a major assistance within the resistance movements of most was found that after WW2 the number of scouts in formally occupied countries had increased.

wasnt Scout Tontos horse?
You don't seem to ask the same question of the ACF though, a youth organisation founded by a female social and housing reform campaigner as part of her efforts to better the lot of the urban poor that simply took the Army as it's model because of the discipline and values that she percieved the Army as possessing.

Whilst the Boy scouts was established by a well repected and successful military man specifically to instruct boys in the military scouting techniques he thought invaluable for his own troops and vital to the future of the Army in the field.

We parade on Rememberance Day because we are demonstrating our gratitude and rememberance of our war dead, not because we are the Army and it is somehow 'ours'. The Scouts are doing the same, and as a uniformed organisation that drills, albeit in a ragtag style, they do so as part of the parade. They are not on the parade so that people say 'ooh look it's the Scouts', just as we don't parade for people to see us and say 'Ooh don't they look smart, aren't they great'. Like us they're there to show people that they remember and they value what was done which is the whole point of a Rememberance Parade.
The Girls Brigade were on parade at Portrushs Remembrance service (except for Poppy (not that Poppy!) as she was ill.)
bibo_boy said:

Do Scouts have a dress code?

Only why do they always look a right mess standing at Remembrance with hands in pockets etc.....?
They do have a uniform, but someone got a fashion designer to modernise it (it used to look very Hitler Youth when I was a member) and consequently looks sh1te. I think they look scruffy because that is what small boys (and girls now) do best.

We always went to Remembrance Parades, something which I was proud to do and something which I am still proud to do.
Good drills for anyone who turns out at the Cenotaph.

At the one I visited there were Guides & Brownies (I think, small girls in blue & brown), a couple of Police and a group of Firefighters, some with medals, as well as the RBL contingent. Not sure I saw any Scouts, but there is another Cenotaph a couple of miles away and they may have been there instead.

I noticed for the first time that that particular cenotaph has a Falklands Conflict name on it. I was told this by his brother, who I used work with. Just goes to show, you never know what bit of history and tragedy lurks round every corner.
bibo_boy said:

Do Scouts have a dress code?

Only why do they always look a right mess standing at Remembrance with hands in pockets etc.....?
Yes they do, but as with most things in this world it has gone rapidly downhill in the last few years.

*puts on old timers hat* when I was a scout - we used to have inspections each evening, and drill practice before parades...*removes hat*

But as someone who has just finished 4 years as a leader (just stopped due to job change) we weren't allowed to do inspections or drill as they 'weren't PC'.

I wasn't even allowed to teach them marksmenship.. even though it was one of the main parts of B-P's original 'scouting for boys' booklet.

It's all gone namby pamby lefty in my opinion.

FluffyBunny said:
I noticed for the first time that that particular cenotaph has a Falklands Conflict name on it.
the one in Port Stanley?

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