7th Brighton Scouts

7th Brighton Scouts is based at Stanford Avenue Methodist Church. Camping must be one of the more memorable pastimes within the scout movement. It gave youngsters like me a ‘holiday’, and an opportunity to gain friendships and see areas well away from Sussex. I worked my way through, cubs, scouts and rovers and did over 100 nights camping in the late 1950’s and 1960’s.

Visiting various locations
Places visited included Wooton on the Isle of Wight, Blagdon in Somerset, Wye Valley, Snowdonia – three times, Swanage and Haslemere; as well as half a dozen farms and sites within Sussex. Easter camps could be freezing cold and wet grass; Whitsun were slightly warmer; and in the Summer I can only remember one really bad camp for weather when we experienced terrible storms on the Isle of Wight. One tent and some clothing was blown away and the farmer took pity on us and moved us into a rat-ridden barn! It was one of my first camps, but it didn’t put me off.

Are these scouts still around?
Some of the scouts appearing on the photos include Martin Stanisstreet, Jack Watson, Nigel Parsonage, Peter and Vic Wright, John Burt, Peter and Michael Whitcomb, Steve Waller, Sam Lewis, John Bignell; and the scout leaders were David Hunt and Alec Gaskin. I’m not sure if many of those pictured still live in the Brighton area but it would be nice to hear from anyone checking out this excellent website.

Comments about this page

  • Dave Hunt is still around, and Scouting in Brighton. The others I don’t know.

    By Hayley Cropp (27/02/2010)
  • I’m now living in Australia and would love to hear from anyone who remembers me.

    By Michael Whitcomb (28/02/2010)
  • I was in the 4th Brighton just down the road at St Augustines. I think I was at school with Peter Whitcomb?

    By Geoffrey Mead (08/03/2010)
  • Hello Geoffrey Sorry, don’t remember you. I went to Hertford Road School and later Varndean Grammar. There was another Peter Whitcomb, spelt with an ‘e’ on the end who was a decent runner for B&H Athletic Club. He’s still around. By the way, I have heard that Dave Hunt has part-written a book on Brighton Scouting, due to be published any time now.

    By Peter Whitcomb (13/03/2010)
  • I spent many happy years with the 1st North Brighton Troop, HQ at St Mathias, Ditchling Rd. We had a good band and lead many parades through Brighton in 1940-45. Is anyone with this memory?

    By John Booker (26/05/2010)
  • Do any of you scouts remember my brother David Cruttenden. He has passed now, but I remember him going to Cowfold in the 1950s. Those Varndean boys should contact the rest – there is a worldwide active group online – email me for details. LindaBB@Gmail.com

    By Linda Batchelor-Ballew Nee Andrews (18/09/2010)
  • I was in the 7th Brighton Cubs and Scouts – probably from ’59 through ’62 or ’63. Dave Hunt, Alec Gaskin and “Skip” Carr were our leaders. We also on occasion had another scout leader show up. He was into amateur dramatics and I believe was a teacher at Stanford Road School. I think his name was Smithers – but I can’t be sure – and I think I’ve seen his face from time to time in the odd movie. We had four patrols at the time, Eagles (headed by Steve Waller and seconded by Sammy Lewis), Falcons, Bulldogs and Panthers. I remember some of the names because a lot of the Scouts were also in school with me: Colin Burtenshaw, Melvin Wooten, Roger Wolverston, John Green, Paul Amey (aka “Plum”), Mick Woolford, Sammy Lewis and Steve Waller (always referred to as “Stevie Ba” by Sammy Lewis), Stephen Kuc (joined the Parachute regiment after he left school as I recall), Chris and Geoff Spain (twins). Great to hear that Dave Hunt is still going strong and that he received a Scouting award fairly recently. I think Dave saved my life – or came close to it. One summer camp at Fletching, Sussex, I took a hand axe out of the base of a tree and a huge wasps nest swarmed over me. I think I got about 40 stings or a bit less. Dave threw water over me getting stung himself a few times. He also had some bags of crystals (Blue-Bag as we knew it at the time) that I was able to spread over my legs and torso to make the swellings and the pain subside. Those were the days!

    By Phil Allsopp (from Scottsdale, Arizona) (04/10/2010)
  • This is interesting to read, thank you for writing it. I was in the cubs (with Mr David Smithers) from around 1950, and remained in the scouts until my late teens (while at Varndean). Here are a few other names I am recalling as I am now writing some memories of my childhood for my kids and grandchildren. The leaders I remember are Mr Jim Reeves, Mr Harry W Dawes and his niece (Olive?), plus Hayden Carr and David Hunt. Other friends that have come to mind are listed below. Does anyone remember the 60th anniversary event at Stanford Ave church, in 1967? I am remembering Ian Sopp, Johnny Durrant, Tony Stevens, Allan Morgan, Johnny Lyle, Muff Potter, Geoff Baker, Ronny Hill (brother Pat?) David Beal. There may be more, Peter Lynn maybe. I have a few photos of those times.

    By Keith Brown (10/03/2011)
  • I was a scout in the Brighton District in the 1950s, but not with the 7th, living near Western Road I was initially in the 35th Brighton Group. I am afraid that I don’t recognise any of the names but here are a few of the leaders’ names that spring to mind: Sparks Haver who was D.C for Brighton East sadly now passed on, Dick Burtenshaw who was G.S.L for the 10th Brighton in the late 60s, Reg Miller who was Scout Master for the 35th Brighton, John Townley who was Cub Master for the 35th, and Laurie Skinner who when I last had contact with him was G.S.L for the 29th Brighton. If any of you ex Scouts recognise any of these names then please feel free to contact me. I have not lived in the Brighton area now for over fifty years but always manage to get down there about twice a year.

    By John Wignall (11/03/2011)
  • Thanks for the recent posting from Keith Brown. Some of these names I remember too: Ian Sopp, Ron Hill and Muff Potter, and of course Jim Reeves and Hayden (Skip) Carr. Ron Hill’s brother was Paddy as I recall. It would be great if you could post one of your photos, as some of us are still in the area or keep in touch with this website.

    By Peter Whitcomb (21/04/2011)
  • Peter Whitcomb – I believe I was at the Downs School with you. Seems like yesterday sometimes!! Phil

    By Phil Allsopp (16/05/2011)
  • Hi Guys, as with Alan Morgan, I remember the storm at Wooton, Isle of Wight, and have pics of the Cafe we used to visit listening to Elvis Presley singing ‘All Shook Up’ on the Juke Box. We were in the 7th Brighton, but have to say, Great site! Keep it moving – lots of us still around – Thank God!

    By Tony Stevens (06/07/2011)
  • Yes I well remember being in the 7th. Jeff and I were patrol leaders of Eagles and Panthers in the early 60s. I really enjoyed my time there and still bore people with it! I especially enjoyed baking bread in camp ovens (biscuit tins and mud). The bread came out like bricks but it was fun. And there was the time we skinned a rabbit – spooky!

    By Chris Spain (10/07/2011)
  • Hiya Keith Brown, I remember you and am amazed at your recollection of all the guys at 7th Brighton. Do you also recall the minister at the time Reverend Boggis? Was surprised you picked up on David Beale, he was quite a character and he and I had same girlfriend at the time – Ann Underwood

    By Tony Stevens (17/07/2011)
  • My first try on a computer and wow, the faces of my youth. I too was in the 7th from cubs to scouts. I did my 1st class hike with Dave Stanistreet in 66. It didn’t stop raining all weekend. Dave Hunt, John Burt, Hayden Carr. Just a few deserving people to give credit for their devotion.

    By Adrian Davis (23/07/2011)
  • Hi to Phill Allsop. I think I lived next door to you at the Sharps in Springfeild Rd. before moving to Southdown Ave. I’ve been living in Australia since 1976. Time flies. I remember all the names and faces. I’m a couple of years younger than you. Adrian Davis, Qld Australia.

    By Adrian Davis (07/08/2011)
  • To Phil Allsop – sorry I didn’t go to the Downs School. I went to Hertford Road then on to Varndean. Of recent interest was a little get-together meal of 20 people at the Chalk Pit, Offham, following a plaque dedication in Denton. Organised by David Hunt, those attending in the evening were Alec Gaskin and his wife; Sam Lewis and his wife; Peter (Chalkie) Wright and his wife; Tony and Archie Heath; and myself and wife. A great evening and a great meal!

    By Peter Whitcomb (11/10/2011)
  • From memory the 7th Brighton used to meet on a Tuesday evening and alternate between the church hall in Stanford Avenue and the hall at Downs Primary School. Perhaps that is where Phillip Allsop remembers Peter from. Adrian, I too am now living in Queensland, and while Phil Allsop’s name is familiar, I cannot say that I remember yours!

    By Michael Whitcomb (16/10/2011)
  • Adrian Davis: I have been trying to make contact with you for ages now having lost your phone number and address. Lots to talk about – please contact.

    By Peter Richardson (06/11/2011)
  • To Adrian Davis Sorry it’s taken so long to reply! Your name is very familiar So…you lived at the Sharps? I remember Philip Sharp and his parents. Philip had an older brother Christopher (studied Chemistry at university), an older sister, Elaine, and a younger sister Janine. I was in Queensland in July giving a keynote lecture at the Healthy Cities Conference that was held at Noosa. Time flies indeed. I’ll be in Geelong and Melbourne this June speaking at the 2012 Conference. If you are a couple of years younger than me, perhaps you know one or both of my cousins, Robin and Ian Davey? They were always at 71 Springfield. Thanks so much for jogging my memory. You lived just around the corner from me on Southdown. Was your Dad a school teacher? And do you have red hair – or was that your brother – assuming that my memory is working correctly? I also seem to remember your mother having blond hair. Best regards – and thanks for making contact Phil

    By Phil Allsopp (23/01/2012)
  • To Adrian Davis - I sent you a note yesterday which I hope will appear on this page. I do indeed remember you and your brother. Contact me anytime at pallsopp42@gmail.com

    By Phil Allsopp (24/01/2012)
  • Great to read news of you Tony Stevens and Peter Whitcomb. I’m writing my childhood notes (for my kids and grandchildren) and Tony you feature quite a bit. I was in contact with Rev Boggis until his death a few years ago. I last saw him in 2000. He was very good to Ann Underwood after her tragic accident. I kept in touch with her until a few years ago. It was Peter Lyne I was thinking of, not Lynn – from Varndean. I’ll try posting a few black and white photos.

    By Keith Brown (05/04/2012)
  • Just another thought for Tony Stevens. I have a 6 minute recording of you singing and playing guitar in Scotland 1960. If you’d like to hear it I can send you the file or a CD. By the way, I live in Canada now. Here’s our email pkwb67@gmail.com  Also I have a few photos of the guys at Varndean from the 1950s too. Love this site, thanks to all.

    By Keith Brown (05/04/2012)
  • I was a member of the 4th North Brighton troop at St augustines church back in the 1940’s. I would dearly love to hear from anyone else who may remember me (there can’t be many of us left by now though as I am now 79). Email jaykayess33@hotmail.com.

    By John Starley (23/03/2013)
  • Happy memories of sunny summer camps. Building a canoe with Steve Mcgann, Dave Carden, Alan Neil, and Nigel Hammond. We went to the Isle of Wight and canoed the rivers with Steve Waller. My brother Jack was mentioned and it was good to see his photograph. Unfortunately he died seven years ago of a heart attack. Jack would have been a great grandfather also having 10 grand children. I have twin daughters of 26 years old and three grandsons. I remember Dave Hunt as a very dedicated scout. I would love to read his book when it comes out. Also Len Carr he always sent a birthday card. Alec Gaskin. And some of the other characters Sam Lewes, Pete and Vic Wright, Melvin Wooten John Burt, I am sure that they would also remember my other brother Ted. At the time in the scouts I can remember Adrian Davies on some of those summer camps. It would be good to hear from anyone.

    By Jim Watson (14/04/2013)
  • Hi Jim and others who know me. Our brother Jack is the one towards the bottom left with his arms on the two boys’ shoulders in the first photo. I recognise Steve Waller, Peter Witcombe and Alec Gaskin, though I don’t think I had joined in 58. Does anyone remember the cine film Alec took at a camp (I think in Henfield) about 1960? It was shown at a reunion in the 70s at the church hall. I bumped into Dave Hunt recently and he said Alec has still got it. It would be great if it could be digitised and put on this site.

    By Ted Watson (20/04/2013)
  • Check out a couple of photos on my page http://www.mybrightonandhove.org.uk/page_id__11493.aspx

    By Ted Watson (01/05/2013)
  • Great to read all your old memories. Does anyone remember the 11th Brighton troop? Leader was Fred South. His brother Dennis was also leader of (I think) the 39th. The 11th was also a great troop. We won the Scouts’ athletics at Withdean, the swimming at North Road and the football also. But then we had all the greats at the same time: Dave West (England polo team), John Dowsett (B&H football), Mick Davies and John Seath. Does anyone know anybody from the 11th up to 1964?

    By James Dowsett (04/12/2013)
  • Those of you who have kindly left comments about the 7th Brighton Scouts – more photos just added: http://www.mybrightonandhove.org.uk/page/7th_brighton_scouts_on_parade


    By Peter Whitcomb (14/07/2014)
  • Hi Pete, good to see your message. Send message to adrianthai2011@hotmail.com 

    By Adrian Davis (08/09/2014)
  • Hi Jim, great to read your comments. I too remember building the canoe. Think we took it to Chailey for its maiden voyage. We all got poisoned by the water! I have a photo of you and I blindfolded with a donkey holding whipy sticks. Great days. Last I saw you, you were in navy rig! Contact me: adrianthai2011@bigpond.com.

    By Adrian Davis (08/09/2014)

Add a comment about this page

Your email address will not be published.