Supporting the younger generation

Funding level: £10,001 to £25,000


Description of Scheme

1st Burghfield and Sulhamstead Scout Group caters for over 300 children, both girls and boys, between the ages of 6 to 18, in the parishes of Mortimer, Burghfield and Sulhamstead in a rural area on the borders of Berkshire and Hampshire. We are the largest group in the area. The Group is supported by 49 adult volunteer leaders alongside a management committee and parents giving up their free time to support the group.

Additionally, the scout hut provides a home for the local youth Duke of Edinburgh group, while during the daytime, it is also used by a Montessori School, providing pre-school education to children from the area.

Over the last 2 years the group has raised over £190,000 to significantly extend the scout hut and premises in order to provide expanded facilities to cope with this number of young people and to reduce the waiting list of children who want to join this successful group. The completed phases of the project so far have provided new drainage and groundworks, an extension to the equipment store, new meeting rooms, stores and dormitories and a new meeting hall. The new meeting hall has been constructed, which will enable the group to hold all it's units' meetings on site, but also the Montessori School will expand in the future so as to be able to cater for younger children too, in line with the new government initiative.

The group is now seeking funding for the final phase: the kitting out of the new toilet and bathroom space. Currently, there are toilet facilities for boys and girls, which are not adequate for the numbers of children now catered for at the site. Also, there are no disabled facilities, nor any shower facilities meaning that we cannot fully utilise the full potential of the building.

The total cost of the replacement and installation of the new toilet fittings has been estimated at £42,680 plus VAT and the group has already successfully raised £6,000 towards this total with the possibility of further funds from another local charity.

The project is being managed by a team of volunteers from the scout group, who have brought a collection of skills to the project. The £190,000 raised so far has come from individual efforts from the children in the group and their parents, as well as grants donated from many organisations and a great deal in-kind. Painting and decorating, for instance has been achieved by groups of children and parents working at weekends.

With the completion of the new hall and having already knocked through from the old toilets to the new bathroom space, it is hoped that the money to fund the installation of the toilet facilities can be found during 2015, although the work would need to be carefully managed around the activities of both the Scout Group and the Montessori School, this has been achieved without disruption to either body during the previous constructions phases.
Should finance become available, it would be possible to install the toilets during the summer holiday period, so that the new facilities could be in use in Autumn 2015. This would assist both the expansion of the Scout Group, but also enable the provision of education for pre-school children under the age of 2 in an area where such provision is non-existent.

We have had good media coverage already for our successes to date and plan a grand opening when everything is finished.

1st Burghfield and Sulhamstead Scout Group

Moment of Pride

The project took many months of planning and meetings to get off the ground. I'm proud of all the efforts of so many parents and helpers to get this off the ground and to a state where we are already benefiting from the additional space. The benefits scouting brings to young people are enormous.

Location: Burghfield Common