This from the CC, Mark Edwards: 

8th Jan

Dear Team North Yorkshire,

mark 17I hope you and your families had as good a festive season as regulations and logistics allowed. I looked back at my last update before Christmas and I seemed to have jinxed things by saying “we are beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel.” Whilst we still have hope, it is a reality that we are now into what will be a very tough time for everyone let alone Scouting.

11111To that end, as a County Team we are looking at some very significant ways of supporting you over the next 4 months and I’ve outlined them below. For this to work, we need those that can to really step up to the mark and offer their support for the initiatives. We have deliberately made them so that if people do volunteer they would only need to give up one or two additional evenings or sessions in the next 4 months. So, I am really asking for you to dig deep and step forward.


We all know that there is a huge backlog of training to be completed and a new time scale that came into being on 1st January from HQ to get wood beads completed as well as reducing further our non-compliance of safety and safeguarding. So, we are going to run a campaign called "Finish it in February !"

FebWhat this means is we will set a target to run as many courses and validation sessions as we possibly can, both at the County level and hopefully District level. To do this, Joe Fillingham, our Deputy County Commissioner (People Training) will run some courses in January for anyone that would like to become a trainer and deliver courses. There is just a couple of modules to do and I know that there quite a few of you out there who have expressed a wish to do this. What would be great is if we got 30 additions to the team.
This would then enable us, along with current trainers, to perhaps run training and validation sessions every night during February. How amazing would that be and how many could actually get training and validation done during that time? Going forwards, it would also strengthen District capacity to deliver training. So, again if we got at least one new trainer from each District that would be amazing.

If you want to become a trainer and deliver courses or you are a current trainer ready to step up to the plate and deliver one or more online training sessions next month during "Finish It In February!" then don’t delay and please contact Joe Fillingham at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by Friday 15th January.


SCWe are going to attempt to run some County sectional evenings for those young people who are still interested in remaining in Scouting, but have not had the opportunity to join an online session. This is by no means meant to undermine anyone, as we all know everyone has had many difficulties to overcome in the last year and may not have the capacity or even the equipment to deliver this sort of Scouting. However, we owe it to our young people to offer them this opportunity. So, all that needs to happen is when we publish the details, leaders only need to pass these on to the young people in their Group. Registration will be through the County and a link sent to those who register to join a session.

Again, we can’t do this alone and I would like to run this for a 6-week initial programme. Therefore, I am asking for 6 leaders from across the County from each section: Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Explorers, to offer one night to run one session that they have already successfully run last term - that is 24 leaders. We will also recruit a second leader for each session.

This may also be an opportunity for volunteers who have felt nervous about delivering online Scouting to just join in and see what happens. If you are able to step up to this challenge, then please contact me on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


We want to begin the process of supporting you locally to help recruit and retain new leaders.

Linda CartwrightLinda Cartwight, our Deputy County Commissioner (People Growth) and her team have ideas that we might start to have structured discussions with those parents lurking in the background during Zoom sessions. Indeed, some Groups have gained new leaders as a result of parents seeing the fantastic work you all do.

Alongside this, we would like to let the whole of North Yorkshire know that we are still Scouting and doing a fantastic job with our young people. To that end, we want to hold a week-long celebration of Scouting, targeting all media outlets you can get to as well as a coordinated approach to all our social media sites.

Linda needs some publicity savvy folk to join her team to work on press releases and short documents to help you do this. She can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. so please get in touch by 15th January if you can help.

In the meantime, please be thinking of where you can locally get this message out (local press, local parish magazines etc) and perhaps provide Linda and her team with some success stories and a picture or two.


St Georges DayWe really don’t know if this is going to be able to go ahead as a face-to-face event (sadly I fear it is very unlikely) so we will be running a virtual County St George’s Day celebration on Sunday 25th April that will include a St George’s Day Service and Renewal of Promises.

If you would like to get involved either by running an activity during the day or joining the team to organise the service, then please contact me on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

This doesn’t stop Districts planning a St George’s Day Parade in the event that we can do something face-to-face in late April and should that happen we would put the County event aside. But as good Scouters want to be prepared and have an event ready to go. Many of you have enjoyed the two activity day events we ran last year, on the longest and shortest days, so if you want to get involved get in touch.


Best Wishes & Stay Safe


Mark Edwards - County Commissioner

Everything starts with one small step!