Funding helps Scout group raise the roof
A SCOUT group celebrating its centenary can be prepared for another 100 years, after a charity gave it almost £10,000 for a desperately-needed new roof.
The 3rd Cleethorpes Scout group, based on the corner of Cooper Road, will celebrate its centenary with a party at the hut today.
However, their celebrations may have been dampened had they not been given £9,450 by the Big Lottery Fun earlier this summer to re-tile and insolate their leaky roof – work that is now complete.
Chairman John Smaller said: "You could see the stars through it – it really was that bad. We usually like to be prepared, but we only found out how bad it was last year and needed to get something done soon before it caused any other problems."
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The scout hut was built in 1924 and the roof put on in 1931 – a little before the group chairman John Smaller went to the scout group in 1948, where he spent nine years as part of the movement.
Mr Smaller became chairman in 2003 when he returned to the area after living in Colchester, but said the building needed work.
The group got a grant from Waste Recycling Environmental Ltd (Wren) to refurbish the toilet block and office areas, but it was then that the contractors told their clients how badly the roof work was needed.
However, now it is done, there is another problem that they must face if they hope to stay open another 100 years.
"I'm very sad to say that we have Beavers and Cubs, but don't have any Scout members. National membership is rising but we can't get enough leaders," said Mr Smaller.
It is a problem that surprises Beaver leader Rita Clark, who has been in her role for 34 years.
"I just love to see what the kids get out of it and when they are enjoying themselves, it's very rewarding," she said.
Parent and helper Lucy Sleight, 33, of Lestrange Street, Cleethorpes, explained just how much her sons, Beaver Oliver and Cub Max, enjoy being a part of the Scout movement.
"It's a great opportunity for them to meet new people, have a run around and learn new skills. They love it," she said.
Oliver, 7, agreed: "I have lots of friends here and I would be really sad if I couldn't come anymore."
Cubs' Leader Carrie-Ann Smith, 18, has been a part of the Scout movement most of her life.
"My mum is a leader and I went to my first camp when I was nine weeks old. It has been a really positive influence on my life," she said.
"I'm a leader because I love the job and I love the children. I don't know what I would do without it."
If you would like to become a scout leader, contact assistant district commissioner Pam Thompson on 01472 812775.