5th Hornchurch Guides BP awards last night, along with Bronze DofE and a Jack Petchy awards. County Commissioner Chris Skinner and President Margaret Henderson joined other dignitaries at St Georges Church Hornchurch for a carol concert followed by these very special awards.
Three girls and 2 Leaders from Essex West stood for 10 hours in wind, rain and some sun, at St Pauls Cathedral and the Tower of London on Saturday, selling Poppies for the Royal British Legion.
"It was fantastic" said Emily, "people even thanked us for what we had given up a day to do as they gave donations and took Poppies" Sarah added she would "definitely do it again."
The Waltham Abbey and Upshire Senior Section and I recently applied for four of our older girls (along with my fellow leader and I) to 'plant' poppies at the Tower of London's 'The Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red memorial'.
We were privileged enough to be given a slot on Sunday 2nd November, so five of us headed up into London to take part in this very special event (our 6th member was unfortunately very poorly and as you can image rather upset not to have been able to come along). It was an amazing and very moving experience - especially as we managed to finish our planting and then head around the outside of the tower for the roll of honour and last post, at the end of the day. One of our girls was even enrolled standing in the moat, by the poppies in front of the 'pouring tower. I imagine that there aren't many who will be able to say they made their promise in such beautiful place.
Here are a few pictures from our afternoon. I hope that they capture the fact that we had a wonderful experience and that it was a day that all of us were very proud to say we were involved in Girlguiding.
We did it ! We had 100 teenage members of Girlguiding Essex West roaming around central London and we didn’t lose one. And girls are already asking when they can do it again.
Most of the 20 teams managed to get around to all the given locations and the photos were brilliant, with mascots sitting with Guards on horse back and with police men directing traffic.
The winning team was Waltham Abbey, who were presented with the county Rose bowl. The girls said they had a brilliant day but didn’t think they would win. Every team also went home with a box of Roses chocolates and a souvenir badge.
The best thing for the organising team was the fact that so many girls had had a good day and left buzzing about STILE. Veronica Riches
A Great Day
It was a great day, we met at Liverpool Street station where each team were given a pack containing maps, instructions and questions. It was up to us what route we took and the transport we used to navigate around the sites and answering questions and taking photos of our mascots in some unusual places.
It was cold and windy but we didn’t mind as it was such a laugh. We saw so many things and walked so many miles.
We had to finish at St Ethelburga’s in Bishopsgate; this was a church that had a Yurt in its garden for all faiths to use. We all tucked into hot drinks and waited for the marking to be done. Abigail Ongar SS
Doing it Essex Stile
9th Sunday was a day to remember, it was when Stile was held. Stile is a day going around London, collecting answers to questions and taking the silliest photos you can.
Stile was honestly one of the best experiences of my life. When we got to Liverpool street station the first thing I saw was an advertisement for The Fault in Our Stars, which honestly made me shed a tear or ten.
Once we had gotten our map, tube map and questions, we began our quest. The first place we went was the Barbican, which was a train and a walk away. We got our silly photos and headed off in search for the museum of London. Where we found a fantastic photo of the Queen and we also took some silly photos.
A few stops later and we were at St. Bartholomew’s, which brought up some unwanted emotions as that’s where Sherlock took the big leap. My group had to drag me away (I got a sneaky photo though).
Soon enough we were at Trafalgar Square, where we had the great experience of getting on one of the famous red buses! But unfortunately what we didn’t realise is that the next stop was where we could answer a question, so the journey didn’t last very long.
After that we walked down to The Houses of Parliament, taking many photos of Big Ben. Then walked along the Thames bank to the Aquarium and London eye, taking some photos and being bombarded by the wind.
After that it was lunch time, which we described to be equally like the Hunger Games, but a pigeon version. As the men on a table near us were feeding the pigeons their chips. It was chaos trying to keep our napkins from flying away.
After that we walked down to the globe theatre and Tate modern, taking in the lovely view of the rest of London. Next stop was St. Pauls Cathedral. As we were walking down we got caught in a patch of rain and then hail. We were drenched! But as we neared the Cathedral we could hear the bells being rung (It may or may not have deafened us a little bit).
After that we headed to Camden, avoiding the long flight of stairs that headed our way. Soon enough our trip was over and we had to get the bus back to the meet up place. We were all very sad that it was over, but we all had a very good, memorable day. Which finished on a high, as we got given, lovely badges made by one of my guide leaders, Wendy and some Roses chocolates (Which are irresistible).
Stile is going down as one of my favourite days in 2014. We had fun, laughter, chocolate and sore feet (It was worth it though).
If there is going to be another day out like stile, I urge you to take the opportunity by the hand because I genuinely had a lot of fun.
Laura, a 13 year old Guide, was nominated for her exceptional support and hard work over the past 13 months in helping her sister Amy as well as Ellie, Rosa, Katherine & Alice reach their target of fully funding their trip to the next World Scout Jamboree.
The seemingly impossible target was £10,500, the girls and their families planned a programme of events aimed at raising the money required before the younger girls began their GCSE's. Laura has fully supported every event - 2 Brownie discos, 2 adult quiz nights, numerous cake sales and tuck shops, car washing, 2 bag packing days, and a Brownie craft afternoon. Laura was always there with a smile on her face cheerfully turning her hand to whatever task was required - setting up tables and chairs, helping Brownies, selling sweets & counting coins & packing bags. Throughout she has been an excellent role model and advertisement for Guiding.
All 5 of Epping Forest South's "Jamboree Girls" owe Laura a huge debt of gratitude.
I do hope that Laura will have the opportunity at international experience herself & that others will be as supportive to her cause. She certainly has plenty of fund raising ideas and will be a great ambassador.
Our unit was camping at Chigwell Row. One of our Young Leaders let us down at the last minute, which left us with a Young Leader, Katy, sleeping on her own. The age difference and lack of tent space meant she was unable to share with the Guides.
In my role as Health and safety, I was not happy with the situation. Unable to contact our missing young leader, our only option was to send Katy home each evening. Obviously, causing an inconvenience to her parents, disappointing Katy, and leaving us short of help.
By a strange coincidence Roma, a Young Leader known to Katy, as they both help at the same Brownies Unit, was also camping that weekend. Her mother being an assistant Guide leader had brought both daughters with her to camp.
We asked Roma if she would help us out by coming over and sharing a tent with Katy, with no hesitation she agreed. True to her word, Roma came over each evening once she had finished helping her own group, and first thing in the morning she would return to them. She mixed with the Guides and Leaders, and blended in so well, it was as if she was part of our unit.
We are very grateful that she gave up the time she could have spent with her family and unit, to help us out and to give Katy the opportunity to attend the whole weekend.
We feel this is a good example of the 4th Guide law, a Guide is a good friend and sister to all Guides, and therefore we would like to nominate Roma for this award.