Our Group was first founded on 6th June 1936, when Scouting was only 29 years old. We were group number 18054.
Mr. Williams, the headmaster of Urmston County Junior School, asked a member of Staff, Mr K C Gomm, to form a Wolf Pack for boys that attended the school. Meetings were a success and progressed, however, it became more and more difficult to obtain adult help. The first ‘Official’ place of Urmston Aquilifer Scout Group was the cupboards in the Drill Hall of the School, where all the necessary equipment was kept. The School badge was the eagle on the roman standard held by the ‘Aquilifer’ (the standard bearer), and this was incorporated into the uniform an emblem much cherished and proudly worn on our uniforms to this day. By July 1937 Mr Williams had given permission for Mr Alf Normington to run the Scout Troop.
A total of 15 Scouts attended at the first census, we charged just 2.5 d (1p) per week and a Scout uniform cost around £1. After two former pupils of the School had been recruited to run sections of the Scout Group, Ken Gomm was the first appointed GSL (Group Scout Leader).
Wartime had a profound effect on the meeting times of the pack, yet they still continued. In September 1939 the Group Flag, which had been presented to the boys by the headmaster, was dedicated to St Clements Church, Urmston.
By 1942 weekend camps were being held regularly again, mostly in Flixton Park, Chassen Park, Millington and Dunham areas. The first Summer Camp since the war began was held at Silverdale. Food was all provided from the boys’ ration book.
The ‘Aquilifer’ Group’s first real meeting place was above an old cottage that had been converted into a shop at 39 Station Road, Urmston, The shop had a model of a small lighthouse on its roof and this meeting place was immediately christened with the name ‘The Lighthouse’. In 1947 a lease was taken out on an area of land on Urmston Meadows and in 1950 ‘Lighthouse II’ was assembled from two ex R.A.F. huts. In 1964, work started on a new headquarters, and, in 1966 ‘Lighthouse III’ was completed, this remained our meeting place until the summer of 2009 when it was demolished to make way for our new headquarters – ‘Lighthouse IV’.
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