Group History

Group History

  1. The group had been in development since October 2013, when former UK leaders Matt Lightfoot and Simon Burgess, who were both living in Prague, separately contacted British Scouting Overseas Area Commissioner – Peter Dawes.

  2. Then on 20th November 2013 at 8pm, Matt and Simon got together to start the process of forming the group at the Trilobit restaurant (Palackého 715/15, Praha 1).
    During the process of setting up the group, a number of international schools showed interest in hosting Scouts but in the end, Riverside International School was chosen.
  3. So on its registration date on 24th February 2014, 1st Prague joined groups from a number of countries around the world in the British Scouting Overseas district called ‘Rest of the World’.

  4. An open day was held on 15th May 2014 where 35 interested Beaver and Cub age young people and their parents attended.

    Its first official meeting was on 22nd May 2014The group originally only had Beavers and Cubs in one section and was based at Riverside Primary School, Sedlec, Prague 6.

    Leaders at the first meeting were, Simona Gabrisova (BSL), Matt Lightfoot (CSL), Kevin Power  (ACSL) and Simon Burgess (GSL).
    First official meeting on 22nd May 2014
  5. The group attended its first remembrance day ceremony in Prague at Olšany Commonwealth War Cemetery, Prague, Czech Republic. After the ceremony, the group was invited to attend a special reception at the British Embassy hosted by the British ambassador.

  6. Founder member Matt Lightfoot, Cub Scout Leader, left the group to return to the UK. In July he was awarded the Area Commissioner’s Commendation for his contribution to the formation of the group. He was presented with his award at the 2015 World Jamboree in Japan by the UK International Commissioner, Dan Wood.

  7. Following changes to the districts in British Scouting Overseas, 1st Prague left the ‘Rest of the World District’ and joined the newly formed ‘Northern Europe district.

  8. 1st Prague Scout Group attended Intercamp for the first time in 2016 in the Czech Republic from 13th to 16th May. Subsequently, the group has attended Intercamps 2017 in Germany, 2018 in Belgium and 2019 in The Netherlands. During this time the group built a fabulous relationship with two German BSO groups 1st Bielefeld and 1st Guttesloh which continued until both groups were forced to closed.

  9. We officially started a separate Scout Troop on a Tuesday evening based at Riverside School,  Hradcanska.

  10. Following the 2019 Intercamp in The Netherlands leaders drove a 7.5-ton lorry with camping equipment donated by the 1st Bielefeld Scout Group in Germany.

    At the group AGM held in the Scout Insitute in the Old Town Square, the group launched its Explorer Unit. The event was attended by The US and UK Ambassadors to the Czech Republic as well as District Chairman Chris Garrett and his wife. At this event, Commissioner’s Commendations were awarded to 3 members of the group leaders and our first Silver and Gold Chief Scout’s Awards were given to young people in the group. We were also pleased to start our involvement with The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.

  11. Group Vice President Matt Lightfoot and Cub Scout Leader Chris Wait attended the 2019 World Jamboree in North America as part of the international service team. They were joined as visitors by our youth members M Roberts, N Roberts and executive member Chris Roberts.

  12. The Beaver and Cub sections move from their original home to a new location at Park Lane International School, Mala Strana. This allowed them for the first time to be truly split into two different sections. The Explorer section held its first meetings in Riverside Schools.

  13. The COVID 19 pandemic closed down face-to-face Scouting in the group from 11th March 2020 to the 25th June 2020. During this time the group went online and produced some fantastic innovative programmes using GoToMeeting as a videoconferencing platform.

  14. The group restarted face-to-face Scouting but due to the pandemic was unable to return to the schools. From June to October, the group ran an outdoor programme.

  15. The COVID 19 pandemic again closed down face-to-face Scouting and we went back online. We managed to have a couple of activities in December 2020 but then were forced online until 13th May 2021.

  16. Following the restart in May the Group started hastily organised its first large-scale group summer camp. This saw 50 young people from all sections and 20 leaders enjoy a 7 day camp in Frantiskov in Southern Bohemia. 

  17. On the 5th October, we opened our second Cub pack on Tuesdays at Sokol Praha Vršovice – Vršovické náměstí 111/2. We named this new pack The Wolves and called the current Thursday pack The Bears.

    Also in October, we moved the Thursday Cubs and Beavers to their new home at Sokol Kampa, Újezd 450.

  18. The group was awarded a Commissioner’s Commendation for its work in supporting young Ukrainians. The award was given at the group’s AGM by the Area Commissioner in the presence of Callam Kaye the UK International Commissioner.

  19. The group opened its second Scout Troop and renamed its Troops Snezka and Vltava. Both Troops relocated to the Riverside School Arts Centre.

  20. The group opened a Squirrel Drey for 4 to 6-year-olds, one of the first in British Scouting Overseas and only a year after the section was launched in the UK. Based in the French International School in Prague it started with

    Squirrel Drey January 2023
  21. Saw the group’s 3rd and largest group camp to date, with over 150 members attending and enjoying the fantastic summer weather in Novy Bor in the Czech Republic.

    Group Camp July 2023 - Novy Bor
  22. International camps galore were attended by group members, we had members attend Kander 100 in Switzerland, Haarlem Jamborette in The Netherlands and three of our Explorer Scouts and one of our Assistant Explorer Leaders were lucky enough to attend the 25th World Scout Jamboree in South Korea.

    1st Prague Scout Group Explorers at World Scout Jamboree in South Korea

Group Appointments

  1. Founder Leaders 22nd May 2014

    • Simon Burgess
    • Matt Lightfoot
    • Simona Gabrisova
    • Kevin Power
  2. Group Scout Leader

    • Simon Burgess – 2014 to present
  3. Group Chairs

    • Gina Hearn OBE – 2014 to 2018
    • Alastair Hammond – 2018 to 2019 (acting Chair)
    • Eleanore Hammond – 2019 to 2023
    • Alastair Hammond – 2023 to present
  4. Squirrel Scout Leaders

    • Julie Maddox – 2023 to present
  5. Beaver Scout Leaders

    • Simona Gabrisova – 2014 to 2016
    • Jenny Kysela-Heikkinen  – 2016 to 2020
    • Chisato Hashizume  – 2020 to 2022
    • Charles Bird – 2022 to 2023
    • Chisato Hashizume – 2023 to present
  6. Cub Scout Leaders

    • Matt Lightfoot – 2014 to 2015
    • Allison Forster – 2015 to 2017
    • Chris Wait – 2018 to 2021
    • Bears Pack
      • Chris Wait – from Sept 2021 to 2022
      • Mauro Lovevcchio – 2022 to 2023
      • David Broughton – 2023 to present
      • Stephanie Shattuck – 2023 to present
    • Wolves Pack
      • Simon and Jo Storey – 2021 to 2022
      • Wannes Leirs – 2022 to 2023
      • Charles Bird – 2023 to present
  7. Scout Leaders

    • Snezka Troop
      • Manon Frot – 2018 to 2022
      • Chris Wait – 2022 to present
    • Vltava Troop
      • Chris Wait – 2022 to 2023
      • Liz Clarey – 2023 to present
  8. Explorer Scout Leaders

    • Alastair Hammond – 2019 to 2023
    • Chris Tebb – 2023 to present

Group Scarf

The group has a scarf of 4 colours,  red and yellow representing Prague city yellow and red, white and blue BSO, UK and Czech Republic colours.

Triple Bordered Scarf
Main: Lemon
Inner: Scarlet
Middle: White
Outer: Marine Blue
Border Widths: 1/2 inch each

Photo of 1st Prague Scout Group scarf

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