Chief Commissioner's blog| Weather permitting
Though heavy fog caused disruptions to Wayne’s travelling plans this week, the Vision still remained clear.
DC support days
I joined 50 District Commissioners at the latest DC support day at Gilwell last week where I helped kick-start the day with an overview of where we are heading nationally. I also got the chance to take part in a Q&A.
The support days, which are primarily aimed at the recently appointed, also appeal to DCs who have been in the role for a while but are looking to refresh their awareness. While traditionally held on a Monday so DCs can have access to offices and staff members, the next support day will take place on Saturday 11 October, allowing those who can’t commit to a weekday the opportunity to benefit from the event. If you are interested you can learn more at scouts.org.uk/DCday.
Moving forward; learning from the past
I took the opportunity during the week to catch up with John Beresford, a National Vice-President since 2000, and brief him on current activity and strategic plans. John has amazing corporate knowledge and it’s invaluable for me to pick the brains of a man who: is one of the few remaining members of the original Advance Party Working Group (the major review of 1966); was the Headquarters Commissioner for the introduction of Venture Scouts from 1966-1980 and was International Commissioner from 1980 until 1987.
Experiences continue to reaffirm the belief that while Scouting benefits from moving with the times and looking forward, we also learn lessons from our past experiences; I am always grateful for the opportunity to seek advice from those like John who have so much to offer us.
A downside of island life
Fog and ‘adverse weather in the Channel Islands’ (as the familiar airport announcement occasionally informs me), prevented Matt Hyde from visiting Guernsey for the Scout Insurance (Guernsey) Limited board meeting on Thursday, which meant that our planned catch-up resulted in a rather long telephone conversation rather than lunch, although the business of the board meeting continued.
The weather also prevented me from leaving Guernsey to visit Tameside South District in Manchester and join the County Development Day. This was a great disappointment as it would have been great to congratulate members in Greater Manchester East and its neighbouring Counties on the success of the Greater Manchester Development Project and to share ideas for future growth. I hope to have another attempt at visiting them in May, weather permitting.
Working with others
Rather closer to home on Sunday I was privileged to be invited to join the Guernsey St John Ambulance Youth Divisions for their annual awards presentations and the passing out parade for their leadership courses, where cadets from Jersey and Guernsey gathered for a training weekend.