Update on Bonaly

Update on Bonaly

Update on interim staffing arrangements from John Cannon, Regional Chair

Hello everyone,

Following on from my previous update regarding interim staffing arrangements at Bonaly and our intent to review the way we provide support across the Region, I can now provide a further update on progress since that note. Firstly with regard to interim staffing arrangements. As indicated, we have advertised and interviewed for an interim Centre Manger for a period of six months and have had the support of John Bruce, Regional Secretary helping the staff team in his voluntary capacity over the last few weeks.  We are very  grateful to Yvonne Yule, who has also been volunteering and giving her time to support the activities of the office. Yvonne has previously worked in the Regional office so has been able to provide necessary experienced support in these past few weeks. The existing staff team have been very accommodating and have changed their working patterns and taken on additional duties, demonstrating great team work and commitment to work through this busy period. I am very grateful to everyone who has come forward and offered/given support in these past few weeks. A real example of Scouting values in action!

With all of the above in mind we have decided to take the following actions for the next six months.

Given the successes of the above, John Bruce has agreed to take on the interim Centre Manager role on a part time basis alongside his voluntary position as Regional Secretary. John will join the staff team 3 days a week to continue with the good work he has been doing.  Further, Barry Johnston has agreed to broaden the scope of his role in the interim and will act as Site Manager, taking responsibility for the duty wardens and improving the overall customer experience.   Neil will continue to be responsible for Activities and will be taking some shared paternity leave for a period of 6 weeks during the summer.  Arrangements have been made to cover Neil’s duties during this time.

This interim period will give John, Barry and Neil the opportunity to form a new Management team and I am looking forward to seeing how this team operates alongside Lynne, Blanche, the wardens and all the volunteers who give their time so willingly for the benefit of everyone who visits Bonaly.

Turning briefly to the longer term, The Regional Executive Committee have given their full support to us taking due time to consider what our Regional staffing should be. In addition, we we have agreed that we should also include a period of consultation to hear your views on how we might provide support and activities in the future.  As a consequence, Graeme Robertson and Martin Elliot have agreed to design this approach and will be communicating with you all in the next few weeks to let you know how you can get involved. Finally, thanks again for your support and patience, as we develop our plans for the future.

John Cannon, Regional Chair, South East Scotland Scouts

Bonaly Holiday Club Summer 2018

Bonaly Holiday Club Summer 2018

Did you know that Bonaly offers a Holiday Programme for kids through the school holidays?

The Holiday Club/Adventure School at Bonaly Outdoor Centre is like no other – where else can they get to be like Bear Grylls and take part in a range of exciting activities, learning new physical skills such as archery or our high ropes course and soft skills such as interacting with others and decision making while also making new friends?!

This is open to any child aged 6-12 years.

See full details


Outdoor Centre Manager

Outdoor Centre Manager

Are you an experienced and enthusiastic Outdoor Centre Manager?

We need an experienced and enthusiastic Centre Manager for our Bonaly Outdoor Centre! Could you be the right person for us? Or do you know someone who could assist us develop the services we offer at the Centre? If so, please do get in touch with John Cannon, Regional Chair, South East Scotland Scouts, at chair@sesscouts.org.uk

We are recruiting an Interim Centre Manager for 6 months to manage our Bonaly Outdoor Centre as we are currently reviewing the way we provide support across the Region. This review will take some time to complete and the appointment of an interim manager at Bonaly is important as part of this process. You will be able to contribute to this initial phase of developing our services at the Centre.

About us

Across generations, Scouting has proved a powerful force for good, bringing communities together and contributing to society. But it always had one aim above all others: to prepare young people for the future. Central to our programme at South East Scotland Scouts are opportunities for outdoor learning and adventure. We believe that outdoor learning, adventurous experiences and residential programmes are essential to give young people opportunities to develop key capacities, such as confidence and resilience, as well as learn new skills, or simply develop a love for the Scottish outdoors.

The role

Overseeing the day-to-day operations of a small team, the Centre Manager will:

  • Ensure that all our users are given the best customer care, for example in booking and welcome
  • Effectively manage the services provided by Bonaly Centre and ensure services are delivered to the required safety and quality standards
  • Have a role in assisting the Regional Executive Committee and the Regional Leadership Team in supporting Scouting in the South East Region.
Hike tents at Bonaly in the Spring

Hike tents at Bonaly

This is an exciting stage in our development and we are seeking someone with the knowledge of running an outdoor centre and enthusiasm to help us improve the services we offer at Bonaly.

How to apply

Applications should be returned by email to John Cannon, Regional Chair, South East Scotland Region Scouts, at chair@sesscouts.org.uk. You can also arrange an opportunity with him to see round the Centre. For more information about the Centre, see https://sesscouts.org.uk/our-centres/bonaly

The closing date for return of applications is 12 noon on Mon 11 June 2018.  Interviews will be held at Bonaly Outdoor Centre, 71 Bonaly Rd, Edinburgh EH13 0PB, on Mon 18 June 2018. We will let you know by Wed 13 June if you are being requested to come for interview. Please note that if you have not heard from us within 5 days of the closing date, please assume that your application has been unsuccessful.

MSP Kezia flies high at Bonaly

MSP Kezia flies high at Bonaly

The South East Scotland Scouts Leadership team were very pleased to welcome Kezia Dugdale MSP to Bonaly Outdoor Centre at the end of April. Kezia was keen to learn more about the opportunities that Scouting provides to young people in the Lothians, which she represents in the Scottish Parliament.

After a welcome from Regional Commissioner Margery Naylor and Regional Chair John Cannon, Kezia was given a tour of Bonaly by Euan McFadzean, our Regional Youth Commissioner, and Adam Bennett, Assistant Regional Commissioner (Youth Involvement). During the tour, as well as showing her some of the activities that young people can do at Bonaly, they also told her about the wider opportunities that Scouting provides for young people to develop and some of the ways that the Scouting Programme allows them to do this, including through Challenges and Awards at all levels. Kezia was impressed by the wide range of activities on offer and very interested to learn about the positive impact that Scouting has on the lives of its members.

After a brief escape from the rain and an opportunity to chat to some of the Regional Leadership team over tea and coffee, Kezia then joined two local Scout groups for a shot on the High Challenge Course. Guided by Neil Kirk, Activities Manager for South East Scotland Scouts, Kezia successfully navigated the balance beam and Postman’s Walk before a brief visit to see a group at work in the Bushcraft village.

Having enjoyed her experience of Scouting at Bonaly, Kezia left with a commitment to take what she had learned (and her new Bonaly neckerchief) back to the Scottish Parliament with her and to work towards her Scouts Scotland Youth Advocacy Award, for MSPs who are committed to raising issues related to young people in the Scottish Parliament.

Special thanks to:

  • Diane Marshall, Deputy Regional Commissioner, who organised and ran the event
  • Neil Kirk for running the activities
  • Fiona Elliot, Division Commissioner with GirlGuiding Edinburgh, demonstrating the strong relationship between Scouting and Guiding in South East Scotland by volunteering to be photographer for the event
Bonaly Open Sessions

Bonaly Open Sessions

Do you know what’s new and improved at Bonaly?

Come along to our Open Sessions!

Over the last two years things have been steadily improving with the site and activities.  Okay, yes we had some extreme setbacks like the toilets were burned down, but come and see the new ones for 2018!!  Whether you have never been to Bonaly or haven’t been for some time we urge you to come along to see the Centre and site now and also hear how we are further improving.  Try out the activities yourself, understand what badges you can do with your group while on-site and explore the wonderful 26 acres the Region owns.

Our Activity Instructors will be on hand to talk through the adventurous activities we offer and to give you a taster if you wish. See the improvements to the buildings and find any last-minute dates that are available.  Or come and find out how we can help you plan your camp and make it cost effective for your group.  And of course Bonaly isn’t just about camps – you can come along for evening visits for campfires, or for an afternoon of outdoor activities.

The Open Sessions are Monday 23 April from 6-8.30pm and Sunday 29 April 2.30-5pm.  If you would like to come along please complete your details here and we will send you some more information.   If you are a parent and you need to bring your family to enable you to come along to either session, please do.

Gillian Fraser, Regional Operations Manager

Bonaly job vacancies

Bonaly job vacancies

Warden opportunities

We are looking for enthusiastic people to join our existing Warden team at Bonaly Outdoor Centre. The role of Warden is vital in ensuring that the people who use our facilities have an excellent experience with us.  This includes welcoming our visitors and providing them with all the information and assistance they may need to have an enjoyable stay.

Please see the job description for details and complete the application form.

Gillian Fraser, Regional Operations Manager

Activity Instructors

We are also looking for Instructors in outdoor activities who enjoy working with young people to join our existing Instructor team.

Please see the job description for details and complete the application form.

Gillian Fraser, Regional Operations Manager