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Scout & Cub Leader Janice honoured with prestigious Silver Wolf Award.

At the recent Group AGM, 7th Banstead Scout & Cub Scout Leader, Janice Barber, was presented with the highest award that can be presented by the Scout Association for service of the most exceptional nature – The Silver Wolf.  The presentation was made by Richard Shortman, ex Surrey County Commissioner and Roxanna Bostock the current Surrey County Commissioner.

111 years of Scouting Service & still counting.....

Margaret Kercher & Daughter Janice BarberJanice first started helping her mother with the 7th Banstead Cub Scout Pack as a teenager in 1972, going on to become an instructor, and finally an Assistant Cub Scout Leader.  In 1991 she also stepped in to assist the Scout Troop, and then ran both sections for 2 years, before deciding that she was needed more in the Scout section and changed her role to Scout Leader.

In 2000 the current Akela emigrated and Janice stepped in again to run the cub scout section “on a temporary basis” whilst another leader was found, but as no one came forward she has continued to act as both Cub and Scout Leader ever since, ably assisted by her husband Stuart, whilst also fitting in the odd session as Scouter in Charge and Head of the Finance committee.

Janice joins her mother Margaret Kercher as a recipient of this special award and between them they have clocked up 111 years of service to 7th Banstead.  Margaret was awarded the Silver Wolf in 1998.  She became involved after being asked to help out the cub pack for “just 3 weeks” back in 1947.  Margaret says that in those days it was unusual for women to carry on working after they got married, but she enjoyed her job in The Bank of England and managed to juggle job, family and scouting with the support of her husband Ron, who sadly died in 1981. After retiring from running the Cub Pack Margaret remained as an Instructor with the Group and then took on her current job as Group Treasurer “which at 89 doesn’t involve quite so much running around!”

The family tradition appears to be carrying on with Janice’s daughter Maura, who started helping weekly with the Beaver Scout section when she was just 11, and is now an Assistant Cub Scout Leader with 7th, whilst son Owen is an Explorer Scout. Maura designed and iced a special Windsor Castle cake for the occasion!

The whole family agree that the camps and sleepovers are the highlights of each year, and it is these memories that most ex-cubs, scouts and leaders remember long after they have left the group. Cub camp has been held on the same farm in Angmering, Sussex for the last 60 years and Margaret still goes along in her caravan. Scout camps vary from place to place each year.

As part of the celebration Janice and Maura were invited to the St Georges Day Parade at Windsor, where they attended Matins in St Georges Chapel in the presence of the Queen and the Chief Scout Bear Grylls.                                                                                                 . 

Congratulations to you both and many thanks for your long service and hard work!

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Rev Rosemary Richter
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