Longcraig Water Activities Centre in 2019

We’re 50!!!

Come along and help make 2019 our best year ever. We’ve sailing, kayaking and rafting available and for those that feel inclined, we can even ensure that the syllabus for the staged water badges (sailing, kayaking and nautical skills and time on the water) are completed.

Bookings will open for the 2019 season on Friday 1 February 2019 and can be made by either:

  • Booking online at https://sesscouts.org.uk/ from the Centres drop down menu and selecting Longcraig
  • Or by calling South East Regional HQ on 0131 441 1878 during office hours.

The online site will show up to date availability. Session prices remain at £12.50 per person so please come along
and help Longcraig celebrate its 50th Birthday!!

For those who just want to admire the views of the bridges, we can organise a bridge tour (maybe as a thank you for
leaders/parents?) in our Longboats. We can’t guarantee the weather, but you will get a warm welcome and we aim to be flexible and to try tailor events to your needs – just ask (lscmanager@longcraig.org.uk)

Dazzling Davidson’s Mains Lights

Edinburgh Scouts support the Mains Christmas Lights switch on event.


Davidson Mains Christmas Lights Switch On

On Saturday 1st December the 30th Craigalmond Scouts spent the day making sure the event was successful.  They helped put up tents, prepare the site to make sure everything went smoothly and raise money.  The lights were switched on at 7.30pm and cheers were made throughout the village.

The event was set up to raise money for new lights with an aim of £10,000. We would like to make a massive thanks to the Christmas Lights Committee. This year they managed to hold an amazing event. We would also like to thank them for letting us be part of the organisation. As one Scout explained, “I enjoyed helping out because it was all worth it when you saw everyone having fun!”


Article written by the Scouts of 30th Craigalmond Scout Troops as part of their Media Relations and Marketing activity badge

Youth Involvement in East Lothian

It has been a busy few months for the East Lothian District Youth Advisory Group. Since they started back in May, they have been very busy coming up with ways to get all sections of the district more involved with each other, and with plans for a district camp and event in the new year things are getting busy.

We have also recently had the 2nd Haddington Cubs achieve their Foundation Level Youth Approved Award and the 2nd Haddington Beavers apply for their Foundation Level Award. We are hoping to get more groups across the District achieve their foundation level award over the next couple of months.

Matthew Moore
ADC (Youth Involvement) – East Lothian


Way forward for Water Activities in South East Scotland

Summer at Longcraig

After a lot of hard work and research, we now have a clear way forward for increasing water activities – sailing, kayaking, paddle boarding – for all ages.

The Water Activities Strategy for our Region was accepted by the Regional Executive Committee in October without any reservations. In fact, the members of the Group were commended for putting together such a far-sighted, comprehensive and positive report that recognised that there are so many opportunities for water activities in our Region.

There is now a consensus that Longcraig Watersports Centre does a great job and that we can also spread opportunities for water activities across the whole of the Region. In addition we need to find an enthusiastic person who could motivate leaders to try out water activities, wherever they are located in our Region.

If you have, or you know someone who has those qualities, please get in touch with me so that we can recruit a Regional Adviser for Water Activities. It would not be a heavy role – just be available to give information and advice.

The main recommendations of the Water Activities Strategy Group were:

  1. More and better information

We should appoint a Regional Adviser for water activities to lead on providing more information about opportunities for water activities across the Region.

  1. New methods of service provision

We should set up a Working Group in spring 2019, with members drawn from across South East Scotland Scouts and Longcraig Active Support Unit to produce a 5 year plan for Longcraig Centre.

  1. Support leaders to undertake or organise more water activities

The Regional Adviser for water activities should be the lead person to support leaders to organise more water activities and develop ways to address some leaders’ reluctance to involve themselves and the members of their sections in water activities.

We can encourage leaders to offer more water activities to young people in our Region, enabling them to have opportunities for adventurous activities which develop their skills and resilience. We will be working on these recommendations in 2019. Come and help us!

And read the full report here

Longcraig 50th Anniversary Year Nearly Here

2019 – Longcraig’s 50th Anniversary – STARTS 1st JANUARY!


The 50th Anniversary Year of Longcraig starts on 1st January 2019.

We won’t be open for business that day, as it’s a holiday (!!) but we do have a small number of people supporting Queensferry’s Loony Dook with kayaker cover in the vicinity of the dooking zone.

So we do plan to kick off the year’s celebrations with the first Birthday cake on 1st January; if anyone is in the general area in the early afternoon please do drop by for a piece of cake and start the celebrations!

Training opportunities and Special Events

Before we start to lock down the programme for 2019, we always seek to listen to the needs of Scout Groups, Guide Companies, Districts, etc. If you have any specific requirements or aspirations in 2019 relating to water activities, please let us know so we can get this slotted in at a time appropriate for yourselves and for our own team of volunteers.

This could be:

  • Training courses
  • Badge work and training or assessment (all stages)
  • Service projects
  • Specific training for expeditions
  • Expedition support (not all expeditions need to be done on foot!)

If any of these things are on your horizon for next year, please get in touch with us at info@sesscouts.org.uk.so we can help turn your ideas into reality and ensure that we provide the course that people want and need.

Explorer Units!

Longcraig has had a long and supportive relationship with Explorers (as we did with Venture Scouts before that!). In particular, we can provide:

  • training opportunities in most water activities,
  • opportunities for service projects for both Scout Award schemes and the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme,
  • the means for Explorers to commence and take up a brand new activity,
  • and above all a great deal of fun through participating in all that we do.

This can be undertaken by individual Explorers, or by a whole Unit. If you, or your Unit, is interested in finding out more, we are eager to sign up folks for 2019. Please get in touch at info@sesscouts.org.uk if this is something that you would like to follow up or find out more about.

Centre Manager

Could you be our Centre Manager?


We need an experienced and enthusiastic Centre Manager for our Bonaly Outdoor Centre!


28,000 p.a.
Full Time with Start Date by mutual agreement.

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 Bruce, Regional Secretary, South East Scotland Scouts, at john.bruce@sesscouts.org.uk

We are recruiting a full time Centre Manager to manage our Bonaly Outdoor Centre and support the work of our leaders to deliver adventurous activities and exciting outdoor experiences to over 7000 young members.

About Us

Grass Sledging at Bonaly

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

The Centre Manager will assume accountability for Bonaly Outdoor Centre as well as supporting the operation of Longcraig Water Activities Centre and managing the Regional Office.  Whilst overseeing the day-to-day operations of a small team, the Centre Manager will:

  • Develop and implement a business plan and budget for the Centre
  • Ensure that all our users are given the best customer care, e.g. from their initial booking to arrival and welcome on site.
  • Effectively manage the services provided by Bonaly Outdoor 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.

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

How to apply

Applications should be returned by email to John Bruce, Regional Secretary, South East Scotland Region Scouts, at john.bruce@sesscouts.org.uk. You can also arrange an opportunity with him to visit 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 Monday 7 January 2019.  Interviews will be held in Edinburgh on Monday 14 January 2019. We will let you know by 9 January 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.

South East Scotland Scouts is committed to Equal Opportunity.
Scottish Charity No SC010563