Over the next few months, my ambition is to spread the word that 'youth really matter' and I am convinced that, with the right nurturing, we can unlock the great potential of our future generations.

Cllr Barnard Scouts

31 July 2020

Over the next few months, my ambition is to spread the word that 'youth really matter' and I am convinced that, with the right nurturing, we can unlock the great potential of our future generations.

I have been having discussions with the Lord Lieutenant of Surrey and I am looking to seek out these special people who not only give their time and do great things for their chosen charity, but also go the extra mile by immersing themselves to the service of others.

The Scouts and Guides are just two of these organisations that support the development of young people. Growing up as a Scout gave me several tools that I have used in life. The most important lesson was how to be self-reliant but also know you can achieve great things by working harmoniously with others.

I was a member of the 20th Enfield group both Cubs and Scouts. In 1955, at the age of 14, I did a ten mile hike with my brother to achieve my first class scout badge. This was undertaken over the course of a weekend and involved staying overnight under canvass. We set out carrying full kit and rations, it was cold and we had to cover a country hike using just a compass and an ordnance survey map. We arrived at our destination late in the evening and pitched our tent, cooked a meal, and fell into our sleeping bags exhausted. We slept so soundly that we woke up to discover our tent surrounded by a foot of snow. We did however pass our first class scout badge.

In 1957, I was honoured to be selected to join the North London contingent of scouts to attend the Jamboree at Sutton Coldfield. I recall the torrential rain with many tents being flooded, but to the rescue came the United States Air Force. The final days were bright and sunny as we watched Her Majesty the Queen herself pass through on a Land Rover.

I believe that achieving your goals in the face of adversity is among the best feelings that we as people can have and know that the Scouts and Girl Guides can help you feel that sense of accomplishment.

If you would like to support these causes, please donate via our JustGiving page: www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/mayor-of-spelthorne-2020-21

You can find out more about the charities by visiting their websites below:

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www.spelthornescouts.org.uk/

www.shootingstar.org.uk/