COVID update

Like all other activity centres, Longcraig has had to temporarily stop activities and any meetings with our members, until instructed otherwise. We have now started to generate some of the necessary Risk Assessments both to allow our own team in to the centre to do some maintenance activity, and thereafter to prepare the way for scouting activities to get started again.

Longcraig will be back just as soon as we are allowed to and enabled to, we just don’t know exactly when! Meanwhile, we all keep a close eye on the Scottish Government announcements, and watch out for updates from SHQ, the Regional Executive Committee, and of course the RYA (Royal Yachting Association) and BC (British Canoeing).

One thing is certain though – we will be having more hand washing, cleaning, and disinfecting – not that we expect that to be any surprise to anyone!

A couple of important Anniversaries coming up in the near future:

National Marine Week (and a bit)

Running from the 25th of July to the 9th of August, to take advantage of the tides, National Marine Week is a chance to celebrate the wonderful wildlife found in the seas around the UK, and our relationship with this incredible habitat that surrounds us.

Wildlife Trusts around the UK will be holding sea-themed events, from snorkelling through the waters of Wembury Bay in Devon, to exploring the rockpools of Yorkshire’s Boggle Hole on a seashore safari, or even picnicking with a porpoise on the clifftops of North Wales.

National Coastguard Day

Celebrated annually on August 4th, Coastguard Day commemorates the anniversary of the founding of the U.S. Coast Guard as the Revenue-Marine in 1790. On August 4th, 1790 Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton established the Revenue-Marine to serve as an armed customs enforcement service. In 1894, it was renamed the Revenue Cutter Service. In 1915, it merged with the U.S. Life-Saving Service. Thus, the United States Coast Guard was formed.

This is a US celebration day, but let’s all take a moment to remember the UK Coastguard too, who protect and preserve lives around our coasts 365 days of the year!

LONGCRAIG – Can you help us operate the ‘Longcraig of the Future’ after Lockdown?

As we start to plan our way back into operation, we have identified a number of specific roles that we would like to recruit suitable candidates for. Three key roles are outlined below, but as well as that, we are on the lookout for anyone with water skills, and also for anyone who simply has an interest to help young people develop and take advantage of the facilities and expertise that we can offer. Water skills not necessary – we can either teach you or indeed you may not be a water-nymph and happy to provide some of the support ashore – all necessary roles!

Media and promotional generation

One of the activities we have focussed on is updating, rationalising, and improving our PR material, in all forms. We’ve now defined what different sets of material we want to move forward with, and are seeking someone with digital creative skills who could help us create eye-catching material to cover both recruitment and to attract new customers once we are fully open again. These would be both digitally generated material, which could be printed, web-based and also for use on social media and other platforms.

If you have a skill or an interest in this, please get in touch –

Support for Young People

As you will read elsewhere, we are working behind the scenes to resurrect an Explorer Unit based at Longcraig, providing both some support for Longcraig as an activity centre, and also a programme for Explorer age young people, wo might have a particular interest in water-based activities. We’ve identified a potential Explorer Leader to head this Unit up and coordinate what goes on, but to make it fully functional and practical we seek one or more Assistant Explorer Leaders to join this team. These people would also by default become part of the Longcraig ASU but could focus purely on the Explorer Unit or could take part in other aspects of the Centre as well. We’re very flexible!

If you have a skill or an interest in this, please get in touch –

COVID support 

When Longcraig opens, we may well have to do things slightly differently, as part of our response to help keep the virus at bay. One possibility is that we may well need a few more people around the Centre when we are operating, to help with potential cleansing, disinfecting, preparation and stow away, not to mention perhaps having to keep the scouts and guides at safe distances as well! We anticipate these will be very much shore-based roles, and will provide what may become a very necessary extra part of the running of an activity centre in the future.  

If you have a skill or an interest in this, please get in touch –

Facilities upgrade

The Planning Application for Longcraig’s facilities Upgrade was lodged on time, before the end of June. It is currently working its way through the City Planning Department and we anticipate a decision on this by around the end of August.

These improvements cover our changing, toilets and showers. Whilst these have come a long way from the initial facilities back in the 1970’s and 1980’s (for those who can remember)

Re-imaging of original toilet at Longcraig

the current facilities were built around 1990 and are showing their signs of age as well as not being entirely appropriate for the 2020’s and beyond.

That will of course require a second stage of approval from the Regional executive and we all hope for and encourage their support in this step later in the year.

During the more recent period of lockdown, we have successfully taken advantage of Longcraig being unoccupied, and more importantly, DRY inside! So, we’ve re-painted some of the floors, as the photo of our boathouse shows (where we keep the two safety boats).


Temporary Storage Required

Providing that this all falls into place, we will need to remove some of our boats and equipment over the winter, to enable the builders to get access to the bits that are being upgraded. We are, therefore, seeking some temporary storage space to free up some room over this time. It could be to store some boxed up equipment or it could be for some boats on trailers – either way, it needs to be secure, but could be either indoors or outdoors. It might just be a shed; or a loft’ or a storage container; or simply a secure outdoor space which we can access.

If you have, or know of anyone who has, any such space available from around October/November through to end of March, please get in touch!

Permit Assessments

Whist we plan Longcraig’s return to active Scouting, we are aware that a number of people may have a need for permit assessment (or even for early stages of permits)

If you fall into that category, please get in touch. Whilst we make the bigger wider plans, we also need to plan in appropriate assessment days, whether that is later this year (if we can) or into 2021. Remember too that there is some grant funding available to help with any training or assessments for activity permits (not just water ones!) so if you have any questions or queries please get in touch and we will do what we can to help.

Everyone leading a water activity for Scouts MUST hold an appropriate Activity Permit for that activity and location!

Ian Harrower
Longcraig Scout Centre Active Support Unit