The Story of an Adult Volunteer PDF Print E-mail

The story that follows is that of an Adult volunteer who has dedicated over 40 years to the Scouting movement.  This is the volunteering story of the Great Uncle of one of our Cubs and is written by Nick Brand


silverwolfJohn Martin, was awarded the Silver Wolf after many years of service to the Association. About a hundred people a year receive the Silver Wolf, which is the highest award one can receive as an adult within the movement. The hierarchy of awards starts with the Award for Service, then the Medal of Merit, then the Bar to the Medal of Merit, followed by the Silver Acorn, the bar to the Silver Acorn, and then finally the Silver Wolf.

After receiving the award from the County Commissioner, the head of the scouts in Buckinghamshire, John attended a service on St George’s Day in the Chapel at Windsor.

After the service he witnessed younger scouts receiving their Queen Scout badges, awarded to those who have become Queen Scouts, and these can be young men or women. This is the top award for young adult scouts who are usually around the age of 22 years old. This ceremony took place in a courtyard in the grounds of Windsor Castle. The Queen Scouts presented lines to the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, who walked up and down the lines and reviewed them.

John did not actually join the scouts when he was a young boy living in Horsham in Sussex, because the Second World War was being waged at the time, and his mother did not want him to leave the home. He did however join the Combined Cadet Force while he was a pupil at Haileybury College in Hertford Heath.

He first became interested in the scouts movement as an adult through his first wife’s uncle who was heavily into the scouts. By this time, John had six children of his own, and knew that his sons would be interested too in the scouts.  John lives in Great Missenden and went to his first meeting in Lee Common in 1969 after receiving a leaflet, distributed to see if there was enough support to start up a group of scouts in the area.

John had always been interested in maps and compasses. Being a farmer, he initially offered his land to be used as a campsite for the scouts.

He soon began to take on many new roles within the organisation. First he became Treasurer of the new group; then Assistant Scout Leader (ASL); then Scout Leader; then Group Scout Leader for both cubs and scouts.

The County Commissioner approached him to see if could become Buckinghamshire’s District Commissioner (DC), which covered an area of half a dozen towns and some small villages and about 1000 scouts. After about five years he took a break, and then took on the role of Assistant DC (General Duties) around 1982 and did that for several years. After this he ended up eventually with four positions which he held down at the same time: he became District Secretary, Assistant DC (Gen Duties), District Chairman, and District Treasurer. Eventually he resigned from the District Chairmanship.  He also took on the role of District Administrator (CRB) the main function of which is to check to see if people applying for posts within the scouts have any criminal records.

John believes that the scouts movement still serves its initial purpose of giving young people leadership skills, and of teaching the young how to build things, lash things together, use canoes and rafts, and so forth.

His grandson is currently an Explorer (14 to 20 year olds) and is currently on an expedition with the scouts in Iceland and his Great Nephew is a member of Cubs at Great Amwell.


If that inspires you to volunteer then please contact us..

We welcome anyone who can spare some time, whether you want to actively help with the weekly sessions or prefer a more behind the scenes role, there is something for all. Even if you only have a spare hour to offer we are always looking to add to our team of volunteers.