A History of YALDING, Kent, England

When the Village War Memorial was unveiled and dedicated on Sunday the 31st of October 1920 the Scouts and Wolf Cubs formed part of the procession up the High Street to the Village Green for the ceremony. This is the first mention of a Cub group, which at that time they were under the leadership of their Cub-Mistresses, Miss Reeves and Miss A Leigh. Like many groups they had their moments and needed reviving at times, and in 1936 it was stated that the new pack had been meeting for a year. They were then lead by Miss Hale and Miss Palmer, daughters of the Anglican and Baptist ministers respectively. They made good progress and two of them, D Fridd and N Baldock, soon gained their first star. They were meeting in Cleaves Hall and were determined to be the best pack in the district. On entering the Cub Football Competition they won their first match against East Farleigh, but were beaten by Borough Green in the Semi-final.
On Saturday June 24th 1960 the Wolf Cub pack was going strong when all 22 were invested by the A.D.C. (Cubs) Mrs Vanstone, in the presence of a heartening number of parents. The first Sixers were appointed - Kevin Bovis, David Curd, Andrew Hobbs and Edward Prebble. After their first `Grand Howl' to Akela (Mrs Hallam jnr.) and games organised by Mr Slater and Rikki (Mrs Pipe), the occasion was rounded off with buns and orange squash. It was quoted that the pack looked very smart in their grey uniforms and was good to see the old village colours - light and dark blue - around the Village again.
The Cub Pack has been held together over many years by dedicated leaders that have changed several times. In a 1979 report by Tony Bennet, who had taken over the running from Peter Forsdick, the pack was full, and names were put onto a waiting list. In that year a Cub Sports Day added £ 76 to group funds. At about 1980 assistance came from John Dybole of Staplehurst, and since then various helpers have given of their time over the years. This included for a short while Stephen Blunden, nephew of Edmund Blunden, plus Lynn Cowley, then of Coxheath, Leslie DiMarco, Pam Sykes, Hillary Thompson, Len Warne, David Revell (leader since 1996) and Pauline Grant. These were all involved in the Cub activities and organising games and projects for the different levels of badgework achievements. This involved various tasks from mending bicycle punctures , searching for Halles comet, to making moulds of animal footprints. Often weekend visits were arranged to places of interest, adventure walks, compass work, map reading, and features of the countryside code, again relating to the attainment of various badges. Several visits to camps were arranged which included Ashdown Forest, Snode Wood near Marden, Hamlet Woods at Coxheath, Parsonage Oast at the Anchor, and trips to Downe and Deal.
Membership in 1984 was 21, this fell to 13 by 1991, and at the close of the century stood at 12.
Cubs cover the age range of 7½ to 10½, and these challenges they have help them to develop their skills, before they graduate into the Scouts. They have a structured programme of tasks, and in summer embark on more intensive tasks related to badge achievements.
Very supportive of both Cubs and scouts have been Edward and Jennifer Raikes. Edward had been Group Scout Leader from 1985 and kept in close contact with these groups, and resigned in 1995 when Tony DiMarco took over. Younger boys of 6 to 8 could join the group called the Beavers, but we only had a troop in this category for the years of 1990/91, when the membership was 10 and 20 respectively.
As Tony was leading these youngsters into the 21st century, groups of Beavers, Cubs and Scouts, were meeting in the Baptist chapel / Youth centre, along Vicarage Road.