3rd Gidea Park Scout Group
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HQ. The Rowswell Hall, St Michaels Church, Gidea Park.
 Beavers (6 - 8 years) Tues & Fri | Cubs (8 - 10.5) Tues & Fri | Scouts (10.5 - 14) 7:30 Thur

The following is taken from the group's Annual Report for 1955.


Once again we made Scouting History by visiting Malta; this is the first time that a U.K. Troop has, on its own initiative, camped in any of the Queen’s territories overseas. An excellent report was published in “The Scout”, written by David Harwood, the Troop Leader of the Brentwood School Troop. The local Press also reported it. We can only give here the briefest mention. 21 Scouts and 3 Scouters of this Troop took part out of a total of 57. We travelled overland to Syracuse and then by the ”Star of Malta” mail steamer (formerly the Duke of Westminster’s private yacht). We spent a warm Palm Sunday on the shore of the Lake of Geneva at Vidy campo site, Lausanne.  We rose early enough next day to pack tents, tidy up and catch a train at 6.50am for Milan, via the Simplon Tunnel and Lake Maggiore. After a short tour of this city, we resumed the journey, across the Plain of Lombardy, through the Apennine tunnel, Florence, Rome, Naples and the beautiful Calabrian coast, with distant views of the active volcano of Stromboli away to sea; over the straits of Messina, passing Taormina once again, with glimpses of our 1950 camp site; meeting once more Dr. Russo, the busy Commissioner for Catania; and at Syracuse revisiting the Greek theatre and the papyrus-girt Fountain of Arethusa.

3GP and Brentwood Troops in Malta

The Island Association greeted us on arrival at Valetta and the Royal Navy Deep Sea Rovers called to see us during Easter week, when the Mediterranean Fleet was in harbour. The 1st Homo (U.K.) Group invited us out too. The chief organizers of the great welcome were Major Marich, the Island Secretary, Mr Ferro of the 1st Sliema Group, Mr. Cruschieri of the Malta H.Q. Scout Shop and Mr. Tom Knight of the Royal Naval School Troop; once again, many sincere thanks!
We camped in the grounds of the Island H.Q. at Floriana, on a bastion of the city walls, overlooking almost half the island, and surrounded by glorious Beugainevillea, Pepper-Trees, and a lilac-coloured flowering ash. Our hosts conducted round the Island, showing us the amazing archaeological discoveries of this century – the underground stone-age temple, the Tarxion bronze age temples with their imported Mycenaean decoration (since shown on television).


Hiking in Malta

The weather made sea-bathing enjoyable and likewise open-air evening camp-fires. But on the eve of our return, a month’s rain descended in a few hours, and a stormy sea, reminiscent of St. Paul’s journey, caused a delay of three days. In fact, we were not only the first U.K. Troop to camp in Malta, but also the first to camp there twice.
However, the delay brought two pieces of good fortune with it. On the train we met one of the Sicilian Scouts who camped with us in 1950; he was now one of a University Students’ delegation from Catania to Verona. On the Alpine portion of the journey, made via Simplon and Lotschberg tunnels, we gained glorious views in the clear sunlight of distant Monte Rosa and Mischabel ranges, 15,000 ft. high.


Other memories we shall long retain are of the visits to the Royal Navy, ships and airfields, the navy being far more in view in Malta than in Britain – it seems to be at the end of every other street; the Palm Sunday service in the English church at Lausanne, which we helped to fill for Mattins and Holy Communion; and the crowded Easter services in Valetta’s Anglican cathedral. We held an embarkation “Scouts’ Own” here, receiving messages of goodwill from the Bishop of Gibraltar and from the Governor, and the Blessing from his acting Chancellor.

On Saturday May 7th an interview with Roger Clay and David Page of 3GP was braudcast on Maltese radio and the Scouts were mentioned in the May 1955 edition of the malta Diocesan Gazette.