SEA scouts leaders in Warwick have been honoured for their efforts on land.
The Rotary Club of Warwick presented an award to leaders of 2nd Warwick Sea Scouts in recognition of their achievement in raising over £1.25million to build a new headquarters in St Nicholas Park.
President Paul Jaspal welcomed a dozen scout leaders and county commissioner Nigel Hailey to an open evening to celebrate their work.
The building, known as TS Norton (Training Ship), opened in September after a ten-year campaign to move from their old building by the river.
Rotarian Laurie Day worked with them to obtain planning approval, and funding was first obtained to renew the jetties and boatyard, which opened in 2018 assisted by a “Make a Difference” grant from the club.
The Sea Scouts led by chair Viv Bosworth, group scout leader Marc Gadsby and fund-raiser Janette Eslick inspired their Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Explorers to raise money for the project, as well as keeping up with their regular activities, including boating, canoeing, and summer camping trips.
Rotary and the Scouts worked together to raise funds by parking cars at the Thai festival and marshalling the half marathon.
By 2019 the Scouts were able to “break ground” on their new building, but an arson attack damaged the structure, requiring partial demolition just before Covid struck creating further delay.
But they kept fund-raising, secured additional grants and eventually the building was finished.
Rotarian Graham Suggett, trustee of Norton Foundation, provider of the final grant of £225,000 was able to unveil the name of the building ‘TS Norton’.
There are now nearly 200 young people involved, with another 200 on the waiting list. Meetings involve learning life skills for scout badges as well as water-based activities.
Rotarian Jackie Crampton presented the leaders with an award from the International Federation of Scouting Rotarians for Community Service for their dedication to youth and the community.
Rotary president Paul Jaspal presented Rotarian Laurie Day with a ‘Paul Harris Sapphire’ badge – one of Rotary’s highest awards for Service above Self.
In addition to his work with the scouts, Laurie, an architect, has undertaken design work for disabled people, is Youth Services chair and during Covid helped get computers for disadvantaged youngsters, and ran the recent Youth Speaks competition.
Mr Jaspal said: “It was inspiring to meet such a positive group of people who had been determined to make a dream come true.
“They demonstrated to their young people that hard work pays and continued to make a huge contribution to their community and deserved our thanks and congratulations.”
Visit http://www.2wk.org.ukwww.2wk.org.uk for further details about 2nd Warwick Sea Scouts.