Register for Regional Workshop on Premises Safety

Register for Regional Workshop on Premises Safety

Register for Workshop on Premises Safety – 7pm on 8th February 2021 

For Hall Managers & Conveners, Trustees/Exec Committees, GSLs

 Following the running of a successful “Premises Safety” workshop held recently in Craigalmond District, we are offering a Region wide workshop to be held at 7pm on the 8th February 2021.    

The workshop will  

  • be useful for Trustees/Executive Committee Members who have their own premises plus their GSLs, Hall Managers & Conveners (Some groups may use a church hall (or school) as a meeting place but have their own equipment store). 
  • be led by Russell Shoulder (Reginal Adviser, Safety) who will be supported by Al Reid (Regional risk Committee) and some domain experts who will support the discussions/answer question including a fire risk assessor, a gas safety engineer, and an electrical contractor. 
  • Include the follow areas: 
    • Safety for Executive Committees 
    • Fire Risk Assessment 
    • Electrical Installation (PAT Testing, emergency lights, smoke detection) 
    • Gas Safety Certification 
    • Legionella Risk Assessment 
    • Asbestos Risk Assessment 
    • Trees Risk Assessment 
    • Health and Safety Risk Assessment (working at height, contractors on site) 
    • Kitchen Hygiene 
    • A sample Compliance Register 
    • A sample Premises Risk Register 
    • Recommended suppliers (produced by participating groups. 

If you are interested in attending, please register for the event by the 15th January 2021 via this link. 

We will confirm the Zoom meeting details by the end of January. 


Russell Shoulder  
Regional Adviser, Safety  

Training Update December 2020

Training Update December 2020

The training team are generally winding down for Christmas, but dates are already in the diary for some modules to be run January – March next year.  Have a look at the calendar on the Region’s website here to find something to suit you.  Remember that a Wood Badge needs to be completed in 3 years, and if already over 3 years you have until 30/09/2021.   Check your Compass record to see what you need to do, and make a plan to work through it gradually.   SHQ has produced a guide to validation while we’re in some form of lockdown, have a look and see if there’s anything you can validate now

If you are still getting the emails from Tim Kidd asking you to complete some mandatory training there’s a problem.  Either it’s overdue, and we really need you to get it done, or, if you know you have completed it there’s a problem with the data in Compass that needs to be resolved.  If you’re not sure what needs to be done please speak to your GSL, Training Adviser or ADC (AT).  This link is to the Getting Started training material – this includes the online Safety and Safeguarding that are to be renewed every 3 years.

If having time to complete the mandatory training (either any part of Getting Started, or the ongoing Safety or Safegaurding) is a problem your Commissioner can support you by arranging a Mutually Agreed Restriction for up to 4 weeks.  What this means is that you won’t attend any meetings, virtual or face to face, and instead can spend that time working through any outstanding modules.  When the training is up to date the restriction can be lifted and you’ll return to business as usual.  If not completed in the 4 weeks further steps may be required. 

We’ll continue to offer training by Zoom, some people find it incredibly helpful to avoid the time and inconvenience of travelling and being away from home, but when we can will add in the option of face to face sessions on Saturdays or Sundays

If you have questions please contact your ADC (Adult Training) in the first instance – they are all full of useful information.

I hope you all enjoy the Christmas break.

Mary Dick
ARC (Adult Training) 

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

Ode to the SES Longest Day SleepOut

Ode to the SES Longest Day SleepOut

With permission, we are sharing a poem written by one of my 1st North Berwick Beaver colony parents, inspired by her experience in supporting her Beaver son (and older Cub son) in doing the SES Longest Day SleepOut in June.  It’s called ‘Sam’s Lockdown Adventure’.

It’s full of humour and emotion and a lovely, sincere account of a family’s lockdown Scouting experience and a great reflection of the amount of hard work parents did (and are still doing) to keep Scouting going

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. 


Laura Hill
1st North Berwick Beavers


At 2 o’clock sharp a text pinged on mum’s phone,

“Scout camp in lockdown,” She read with a groan.

“We can’t come together but we can still have some fun,

Put your tent up at home and we’ll Zoom later on.”

“Can we camp out?” asked Sam with a smile on his face,

“Beaver camp’s off, but the garden’s the place!”

“I suppose so,” said Mum with a bit of a sigh,

As she peered at the clouds through a half-opened eye.

“I’ll go up to the attic and get the tent out,

But I’ll need your Dad’s help, can you give him a shout?

It’s 3 o’clock now, we’d best waste no time,

We should really set up while the sun does still shine.”

“I’ve found it,” said Mum, “But no pegs in the bag”

You kids never tidy, that’s why I’m a nag!

Have you any idea where you put them away?”

“I know!” said Sam, “They’re in the driveway.”

When the town clock struck 4, the gear was outside,

They’d decided to set up the tent by the slide.

But before they got started, Sam gave a shout:

“A Scout camp needs hotdogs, get the BBQ out!”

“Of course,” replied Mum as she pulled out the tent,

 “But first we must sort out the day’s main event.”

“These poles are so tricky, I forget where they go,

Is it this hole, or that one, does you Dad know?”

As the time approached 5, the tent was set up,

Though Sam’s big demands just wouldn’t let up:

“We need marshmallows, hotdogs and burgers in buns!”

There’s not much mum wouldn’t do for her sons.

She pulled out the barbeque, and charcoal briquettes,

They would do this for Sam, so he’d have no regrets.

The charcoal got hot and the embers grew white,

The hotdogs were tasty, a real camp delight.

“Just one more thing, Mum, please make s’mores.

There’s no-one that makes them as good as yours!”

“Oh, go on then,” said mum, with an audible sigh,

“But it’s now nearly 6 – time really does fly!”

They had the sweet treats, then thought about beds,

They’d need somewhere cosy to rest weary heads.

Roll mats were gathered, and sleeping bags too,

But where were the torches? Only mum knew!

At the sight of the den, Dan wanted to join them,

“Nip up to the house, grab your stuff and come on then!”

So, by seven o clock another bed was found,

Though mum was never keen to sleep on the ground.

While the boys made it cosy in one of the pods,

Mum had a plan that would defy all the odds.

She would sleep on a mattress, one good and thick,

With a duvet on top, that might do the trick.

At near 8 o’clock the zoom call came through,

“Let’s sing some camp songs, with all the scout crew!”

His leader sang loud but it was in vain,

For the boys were just shouting, they thought it a game.

Stories were read and the boys settled down,

They could hear 9 strikes from the clock in the town.

“Night now, my boys, I hope you sleep well.

I’ll be right next door if you need me just yell.”

But at ten the zip on mum’s pod was unfurled,

And the boys crept in where she lay tightly curled,

“What’s going on here?” They cried in disgust,

“How have you got a bed while we lie in dust?”

So, by eleven the beds were all swapped,

And onto the mattress the 2 boys just flopped.

But down on the roll mat beside them mum groaned,

“Why am I doing this, I should have known!”

At 12 the cat from next door gave a howl,

As all round their tent he started to prowl.

“I don’t like it” muttered Dan, I want to go in,

But Sam started snoring despite all the din.

And then there were two left out to camp,

With one sleeping soundly and one who had cramp.

As the night closed around them, from the window above,

Some music played loudly, but Sam didn’t move.

The clock down town pealed out 1, 2, 3 and 4,

Young Sam didn’t stir, he continued to snore,

But squashed up beside him his mum couldn’t sleep,

Despite breathing deeply and counting out sheep.

As dawn broke at five, the birds chirped their song,

Mum knew that she hadn’t slept for too long.

She wiped bleary eyes and tried to lie still.

Ignoring the drizzly rain and the chill.

Finally, Sam blinked his eyes open and smiled,

“I did it! I slept through the night!” beamed the child.

“I’m so proud,” said his mum, “I love you a ton,

“You know I’d do anything for you my son.”

Explorers in 2020

Explorers in 2020

2020 started with Explorers doing all the things they usually do, like a visit to Lochgoilhead by Wildfire, a Pentland District treasure hunt round the New Town, and a ski trip to France by Greenbank.

Wildfire Explorer Scout Unit

However, thanks to the imagination and effort put in by leaders, there has been a lot of Exploring this year, adapted to fit into the constantly changing constraints imposed by the pandemic.  Activity moved online, with Zoom providing a platform for Unit meetings and training, and this continues to form part of a hybrid model as some face-to-face Scouting becomes possible again.

As positives, we can highlight:

  • Games Where’s Wally? breakout rooms and many more
  • Training for Young Leaders and for expeditions
  • Investitures done online
  • Top Awards modified to fit the circumstances
  • Young Leaders assisting their sections
  • Involvement of young people to provide ideas and run online sessions
  • Expeditions for 59 Explorers in the Pentlands and a group preparing for Silver and Gold canoeing
  • New Units including Longcraig ESU
  • Moving on from Scouts to Explorers, including completion of CSA Gold
  • Network and adult roles encouraged, with input from Explorers

Above all, however, we should highlight the fact that there are still a lot of Explorers actively involved, and this is down to the commitment and effort of many leaders and young people.  Many thanks to all, and let’s hope that the report on 2021 will be much more normal.


John Buchanan
Assistant Regional Commissioner (Explorers)

60 Years of Edinburgh Gang Show in 60 Seconds!

60 Years of Edinburgh Gang Show in 60 Seconds!

It’s fair to say that having a Gang Show free November was an unusual experience for many.


A short video was released on the 14th November, exactly 60 years since the first Edinburgh Gang Show opened at the King’s Theatre. This video was released at 7.30pm (the start time of the first show) and included photographs of items and key people from the past 60 years set to the soundtrack of ‘The Jamboree Overture’. This video also included a short message from cast members Connor and Riana.

To mark what would have been the 2020 opening night on the 17th November over 100 of the Gang joined a Zoom meeting to catch up, share memories of previous shows and to make a Promise that Edinburgh Gang Show will return bigger and better when we can. 

As 2021 approaches our attention will now turn to how we bring this very special Scouting and Girlguiding activity back to the King’s Theatre.

Stay tuned!


Scott Walker
Edinburgh Gang Show Active Support Unit 

Scout Centre December 2020 Updates – Longcraig

Scout Centre December 2020 Updates – Longcraig

Winter has now well and truly set in at Longcraig:

Facilities upgrade – Update

Our Building Warrant application is now at City Planning. Tender invitations have been issued and there are a number of potential contractors preparing bids to do the work. We expect to have their proposals available early December.

So, our hopes and expectations remain that the works will be able to commence immediately into 2021, with a completion date of early Spring so we will be able to re-open after COVID with a significantly improved and modernised toilets, showers and changing.We’ll keep you updated over the winter months as things continue to progress.

And a wee bit of help would be appreciated too please:

We’ve made good progress in preparing and clearing space for the contractors when they come, but we do still need some space away form Longcraig where we could store some of our equipment for a few months to ease up some space. Our needs are very flexible – ranging from some boats/kayaks on trailers, to some of the same not on their trailers, to simply some boxes or crates of equipment and stores. So, any suitable space, either outside or inside, would be ideal, so long as it is reasonably secure, although any boats and trailers can be well locked up!

If you know of anywhere that might fit the bill, please contact Malcolm Leckie, Active Support Unit Manager, on 07919 170437 or Ian Harrower on 07565 593785

Merry Christmas from all the team at Longcraig Scout Centre

We take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy and healthy Christmas, and we all join together to hope that 2021 will allow us to return to some sort of ‘more normal’ and that we will be able to start offering activities and training once again.

We’d like to thank everyone for their patience and perseverance during 2020, not just for the bookings and cancellations and reschedules but also for the support we have had during a difficult year for all activity centres and providers.

In keeping with a number of other establishments, here are a few Christmas shopping ideas that you might like to consider:


Gifts for Him:


  • Longcraig can offer taster sessions, training courses, try a new activity, and much more.
  • We can offer vouchers for any of these activities which can be used as part of a group booking or as an individual where appropriate.
  • We can provide kayaks, sailing dinghies, paddleboards, and any of the accessories needed for these, for scout sections, or even for family use, when it’s not being used, provided it is used within the normal activity rules.

            Some ideas for stocking fillers:

  • Buoyancy aids
  • Waterproof smock tops or canoe cagoules
  • Warm woolly beanies
  • Wetsuit boots
  • All the rest of the wetsuit too!
  • Sailing gloves

We are happy to offer advice if you are going on a shopping spree, just drop us an e-mail!

Gifts for Her:

Longcraig is a non-discriminatory organisation, so ALL of the Gifts for Him above are equally applicable to females too! (and leaders; and grannies and grandpas!)


Experiences for Everyone:



  • There are now three bridges in the Forth to sail under, paddle round, or simply view from close up from any angle.



  • A few times a year, when the tides are right, we can offer a muddy day out.



  • At any time of the year, our Barbeque option has one of the best views in South East Region as you gaze up the River Forth through the three bridges!

To enquire about any of the above gift ideas or opportunities, please contact

Ian Harrower
Longcraig Active Support Unit