Welcome to 3rd Chalkwell Bay Sea Scout Group. Founded in 1931, 3rd Chalkwell Bay operates from our purpose built headquarters in the Old Town of Leigh on Sea in Essex, where we run a huge array activities and training for boys and girls ages 6 to 25 and beyond. We are recognised by the Royal Navy as one of the top 100 Sea Scout Groups in the country.
As a Sea Scout Group a lot of our activities are based on the water, and we have a large fleet of our own boats including Wanderers, Topazs & a Laser Stratos, plus a collection of safety and rowing boats to name a few. We are an RYA and British Rowing Recognised Training Centre, giving formal sailing, power boating and rowing training to national standards most weekends. We also offer a wide range of other activities and traditional Scouting skills including hiking, climbing, camping, and visits away.
The Group has five sections, Beavers for 6-8 year olds, Cubs for 8–10½ year olds, two Sea Scout Troops for boys & girls aged 10½ – 14, and the Endeavour Explorer Sea Scout Unit for 14-18 year olds; Southend West Scout Network for 18-25 year olds also meets at The Den. All sections are led by a dedicated and experienced team of volunteers and qualified instructors. There is also an old boys (and girls) association called the Leigh Creek Guzzlers, which is open to anyone who has ever been associated with the Group, and a parents support team who assist with fundraising.
Sunday 10 September saw the return of the ever-popular Leigh Regatta, with families flocking to Old Leigh to enjoy the mix of games, music, food and entertainment. Leigh Regatta aims to raise funds for the Old Leigh Sea Scout Groups and other local charities, organised by the Leigh Lions in partnership with the Sea Scouts, and is our biggest fundraising event of the year.
Thank you to everyone who came down and supported us on the day, and especially to all the Cubs, Scouts, Explorers, Leaders, parents, family and friends who gave up their time to make it happen by helping set up & pack away, baking cakes, manning stalls and donating prizes & jumble – we really couldn’t do it without you! Overall we raised £2,100 from the games stalls, jumble sale and tea tent (pretty good for a day’s work!).
In the Scouting activities, the Cubs won the welly throwing and tug-o-war competitions (although the parents let the side down and lost to 4th/6th Leigh). In the Scout Pentathlon (which became more of a triathlon due to the wind stopping us getting afloat), the Scouts competed in a sedan chair race, tug-o-war and topaz rigging race – winning all three events.
During the summer holidays we like to get the Cubs out on the water using the Group’s collection of sailing boats. This year we managed two sessions on 23-24 August which proved a great success, getting 25 Cubs out on boats to experience sailing, which they all thoroughly enjoyed. Back at The Den they were able to jump in to the sea off the jetty for a swim, and have a BBQ to round off the day. Thank you to Dan Parson and Chris Daly for organising the two days, as well as to all the leaders, Explorers and Scouts that helped out.
We like to give the older Scouts a challenge away from the younger ones every so often, so this year we ran a lightweight sailing expedition to our Patrol Leaders during the summer holidays. In August a small team of Scouts, Explorers and leaders sailed a fleet of wanderers over the Thames Estuary to the Isle of Grain in Kent. There we set up camp on the deserted beach, and collected driftwood to make a fire. Before dinner the team hikes to the nearest town (about 45 minutes away) to explore, then headed back to our beach to prepare the evening meal (burgers!), before sleeping under the stars, in bivvies on the beach around the fire! The following morning we cooked breakfast, packed all the equipment back into the dinghies and headed back across the shipping lane to Leigh.
One of the highlights of the Scouting calendar is the annual summer camp. The year the Cubs were back at Glemham Hall, and was the biggest camp they have had in a while – 28 Cubs and 6 Beavers! The weather wasn’t fantastic but that didn’t seem to matter they all had a wonderful time camping going on hikes, cooking sausages over open fires and singing around the camp fire.
The two Scout Troops were just down the road at Marlesford Hall, another favourite. The Scouts lived under canvass and cooked on open fires in patrols, completing a packed programme including an assault course, a visit to Aldeburgh, Patrol hikes, and an enterprise afternoon to see which patrol was the most business minded. The Scouts also worked towards a variety of badges: outdoors challenge, camper and chef badges for most, whilst the older ones learn how to survive in the wild on the survival skills badge.
The Explorer Unit headed south for a change to a new site in Folkstone, located within a small clearing within a wooded area, giving access to an almost endless supply of wood (the Explorers do like their fires!). The location allowed a couple of visits into Folkestone for a day at the beach as well as a trip to a swimming pool, and a visit Dover Lifeboat Station which was very informative and educational. Despite some very enjoyable camp meals cooked over open fire, the Explorers all identified the Chinese takeaway as the meal of the week.
On Sunday 9 July we threw open the gates to The Den for our annual Open Day at our HQ. It was lovely to see so many families & friends join us in Old Leigh; we had almost the the entire fleet afloat with sun, sea & a BBQ. There was the chance for families and friends to get out on the water and see a bit of what we do.
Thanks to everyone who came and visited, we hope you enjoyed the day; thanks also to all the team who made the whole day happen and such good fun.
For those that weren’t able to make it, one of our very talented parents made a short video. Thanks Sarah.
Our amazing Asst Cub Leader Kate Emery has been out in this hills this weekend (24-25 June), completing the National Three Peaks Challenge – climbing the highest peaks in England, Scotland & Wales in under 24 hours (23hours and 30 minutes to be precise). She took on the challenge to raise funds for 3rdCB and Glenwood School, and has smashed her fundraising target of £1,000, which will be split between the two charities.
At the finish line Kate said of her adventure “An amazing weekend, met some interesting people. Ben Nevis was my favourite, Scafell Pike was mentally challenging in the dark without my glasses, and Snowdon was a case of get your head down and get it done. Thank you for everyone’s support over the weekend.”
A massive well done Kate, and thank you to everyone who’s supported her!
Renown Sea Scouts have done their good deed for the week. Friday’s Troop meeting during half term was planned as Mud Olympics, but when we got to The Den there was huge amounts to rubbish that had been dumped in the sea around Victoria and Bell Wharfs near to our HQ in Old Leigh. Before starting the evenings main activities the Scouts duly got stuck in and cleaned the area up, before the incoming tide spread it all along the foreshore, and making it safe for others to go out without risking cutting themselves on the broken glass. Job done, the Scouts got on with the more entertaining Olympic Games on the mud.
This was never intended as a fundraising or publicity stunt, but after the story was quickly picked up on social media (782 shares and 4.3k “likes”) and local news, people from around the country were keen to make a donation to the Scouts – these totalled £325! We were a bit taken by surprise by all the fuss, for us this is just normal business, and we’re really very grateful to those who made a donation which will go towards replacing our fleet of sailing dinghies. Thank you all!
A BIG thank you to everyone that came along to see us St Clement’s May Fair in the Library Gardens on Bank Holiday Monday, especially to all the young people and parents that helped set up and run the stalls; we hope you all enjoyed it too!
The games, including favourites like Pin the cap on the Sea Scout, Bat the Rat and Sweet Pong, raised £644 for the Group. We even had a visit from Sir David and the Lady Mayoress who joined in with Bat-the-Rat!
Essex Yacht Club turned Black and Gold for the evening on 20 May, when it played host to our May Ball fundraiser. Around 80 leaders, families and friends of 3rdCB stepped about the former mine sweeper for canapés and a sumptuous dinner, then danced the night away until the small hours for a fun filled spring evening.
The evening raised just under £2,500 for the Group, thank you to everyone that joined us on the Wilton and made it such a huge success, and especially thanks to Essex Yacht Club for hosting us, all the Scouts and Explorers who served the meal, Marcus for the disco, and the awesome Nicky Veitch for bringing it all together and making the whole night happen!
A few more photos of the evening are on our members Facebook Group here and here.