Hoe Down 13/10/01

This hoe down was a bit of an end of an era. The caller, Cyril, who we have used for the last twenty years or so had decided to call it a day, so this was his last hoe down for us. Also because this was to be the last hoe down organised by the Group Executive Committee of Mike, Irene and Maureen who are also retiring from the Group next year after nearly twenty years hard work with fund-raising activities.
The evening went very well with the majority of people initially getting the dances hopelessly wrong, but generally getting the hang of things.
After the traditional pie and pea supper, Mike presented Cyril with an engraved cut glass vase as a thank you. He was very surprised!
At this point we sprung a surprise presentation on Mike, Irene and Maureen. Jop got up to do a little speech and then I presented the ladies with some flowers, while Michelle presented Mike with a bottle of Glenfiddich. Carol then took our photo. Everyone was very please and impressed that we had managed to keep everything quiet.
In all we had a great evening and made over £100 in the process.

Finally, once again thanks to Mike, Irene and Maureen.

Written by Nick

Permanent link to this article: https://porthillscouts.org.uk/site/2001/10/14/hoe-down-131001/

Ice Skating At Altrincham

On Wednesday 26th September 2001, we left Porthill at 7:00 pm en route for Altrincham Ice Rink near Manchester. When we eventually arrived at our destination, we had to wait for a while for Jop because he was running late from work.
We went in, but Tony decided that he would prefer to go to the pub to meet his girlfriend rather than join us on the ice. We did a few circuits around the rink and then two of the Scouts spent a bit of money by going on the arcade games while another watched. One of the Scouts seemed to be the better player on ‘Alien Destruction’ and won the football game.
We went back onto the rink with about half an hour left; all the Scouts and leaders went round together, just having loads of fun!!!
Sadly it was time to leave at about 9:00 pm. We all got off the rink, returned our skates and then one of the Scouts got a drink of coca cola then rushed back to the others. When we were all together we saw that it was chucking it down, suddenly Tony came round the corner and we all ran to the cars. We split up and the leaders took the Scouts back to their homes.

Written by Anthony

Permanent link to this article: https://porthillscouts.org.uk/site/2001/09/29/ice-skating-at-altrincham/

London Trip 3/8/01 – 6/8/01

Friday 3/8/01

Everyone met up at my house at 10.45 and we left, on time(!), at 11.00. There were eight of us – Mat & Antony (Scouts), Tony, Carol & Michelle (Ventures) and Dave, Jop and myself (leaders). The actual journey itself wasn’t too bad, except it was very hot. We stopped off on the M1 at a service station for some lunch at about 13.00. After restarting, we arrived at the camp site at around 14.40. As we were driving in, we met the Bailiff on the way out! He was just off to meet his grandchildren and said that he would be back in around an hour. So we were left to do a bit of sunbathing.

Once the Bailiff came back, we got the keys to the buildings (we cheated and didn’t camp this time!) and got set up. While some of the group set up the rooms, the rest of us went shopping.

With the shopping finished we returned for a quick tea and it was then off into London itself for a ‘London Walk’. Fortunately the Tube was behaving, and we arrived at Tower Hill on time for the start of the ‘Jack The Ripper Haunts’ walk. There were so many people wanting to take the tour that it had to be split in two. It was a very interesting and informative tour. We got to see some of the bits of London not normally seen by tourists and also learned a bit about The Ripper and the conditions of the Victorian East end of London.

We got back to the site completely knackered!

Saturday 4/8/01

We actually got up at a respectable time and after a good breakfast set off into London again.

First stop was Hyde Park to watch the 41 gun salute for the Queen Mother’s 101st birthday. You don’t actually realise the scale of what is going to happen until some soldiers walk onto the field by their ammo boxes. Moments later horses come thundering down the field pulling the gun carriages. The guns are then set up and on the stroke of midday, they start to fire one by one. Our ears rung for a few minutes after they finished firing – I’m glad they were only blanks!

Jop and Dave then hired a rowing boat and Mat and I hired a peddle boat for half an hour on The Serpentine – how very civilised!

After a bit of persuasion from Carol and Michelle we then went to Harrods. Our favourite bargains were £50 per kg for some mushrooms and £6500 for an antique chair! Once we had bought the place up we went on to Covent Garden for a quick look round.

Our final stop for the day was Oxford Street. On passing the theatre staging Les Miserables, Dave and Jop decided that they would like to ‘take in a show’, so they went to get tickets for that evening’s performance. They were lucky and got reasonable cheap tickets, so they went back to the camp with Antony while the rest of us carried on to Oxford Street. As we were on our way, we got caught in a major downpour – no matter where we go, no matter what we do, we always get wet!

As we got back to the site Dave & Jop were leaving for their evening of culture and so we had our tea and chilled out for the rest of the evening. A slight diversion was that my cousin popped round to say ‘Hi’ (his family live just round the corner from the campsite).

Sunday 5/8/01

After a more leisurely start and later breakfast, during which Dave & Jop told us about their adventures after the show in Soho, we set off on our travels once more. We travelled down to Tower Hill and crossed over The Thames on Tower Bridge. We then had a walk along the South bank of The Thames towards the Tate Modern art gallery. We had a quick look round, it certainly is an impressive building (it’s an old power station), with some interesting exhibits.

As time was pressing on we had to carry on down The Thames towards Westminster to the London Eye. The views from The Eye are very impressive, especially on a fine clear day, which we had. We could even see Alexandra Palace which is just up the road from where we were camping.

Once finished on The Eye, we wandered up Whitehall to Trafalgar Square for a few photo opportunities.

After we got back to the site, it was time for the traditional end of camp BBQ. Jop & Dave did a splendid job of cooking and, as usual, we had too much to eat again. My cousin turned up again and helped us out with the food.

Monday 6/8/01

Got up a bit earlier than usual as we had to pack up and tidy up before going out. Also, we had to make sure that our uniforms were looking smart and pressed properly as we were off to the Houses of Parliament.

Just as we set out for the Tube, it started to throw down with rain and wet got drenched (again…….). Fortunately, by the time we arrived at Westminster we had all dried out. We met up with our local Member of Parliament, Paul Farrelly, who had arranged a tour round Parliament for us. The Palace of Westminster is a fascinating place, full of history and the actual Commons chamber is a lot smaller than it looks on T.V.

Back at camp, we had an improvised lunch, packed up and left at 15.30. We finally got home just before 19.00.

All of us were knackered, but a good time was had by all.

Written by Nick

Permanent link to this article: https://porthillscouts.org.uk/site/2001/08/08/london-trip-3801-6801/

Indoor Climbing

In May we went indoor climbing.
We went to the wall, which is in Stafford Scout Group’s hut. When I first saw the wall I thought it was small, but some of the routes which had been planned were quite hard, especially the one where you had to climb over a door using only your arms. The overhangs were also quite tricky, as we had to clip the rope to carribenas when we went up and unclip them when we went down i.e. no abseiling down. We had a good time. I hope to go again soon although maybe for longer. I would recommend indoor climbing to anyone who thinks they could do it or are just up for the challenge.

Written by Antony

Permanent link to this article: https://porthillscouts.org.uk/site/2001/05/24/indoor-climbing/