1970 – 2000

Over the next few years, the Group got more new Leaders. In 1971 Eileen Holmes became the Cub Leader, Lesley Salmon and Anne Ambler became Assistant Cub Leaders and Geoff Laws became an Assistant Scout Leader. In 1972 Bob Robson became the Group’s Venture Scout Leader, a new section created to replace the Senior Scouts and Thomas Turner, a former Rover Scout became the Assistant Venture Scout Leader. A year later, in 1973 Barney Carr took over from George Pilgrim as the Group Scout Leader.

In 1974 the Troop got another new Assistant Leader when Fenwick Curry joined the Group, he was joined two years later by two former Scouts, Dudley Rogers and Martin Beavers. Barney carried on as Scout Leader until 1977 when he decided to concentrate on being the GSL and handed the Troop over to Fenwick Curry, or Fen as he was known. That year also saw the Cub Pack change hands when Eileen handed the Pack over to Michael Pearson.

In 1978 Bob Robson took on a new role as the Assistant District Commissioner (Venture Scouts). Because of the amount of time it took up, he handed the job of Venture Scout Leader over to George Hunter, with Derek Bennett acting as an Assistant Venture Scout Leader.

April 1979 saw three Venture Scouts start to help at the Scouts. Paul Rogers, Keith Hill and Marty Jameson all started to help regularly at the Troop until they were old enough to take out warrants.

The new headquarters stayed as it was for 11 years until the 17th of May 1980 when a new Venture Scout room was officially opened. The room was an extension onto the back of the building, again having been built in part by the Leaders, Venture Scouts and Scouts in the Group at the time. It was about this time that Graeme Rea took over as Venture Scout Leader.

The building work was not without it’s risks though, Barney Carr had a close escape when one of the Scouts, Adrian Nichol, who was helping dismantle a partitioning wall, removed one or two bolts too many and the wall collapsed, leaving Barney stood in the open door way of the collapsing wall surrounded by a cloud of dust.

In 1984 the group had a wedding to celebrate when Dudley Rogers and Cub ACSL Helen King were married, with the Cubs providing a guard of honour.

Two years later, on Thursday the 10th of April 1986, the Group opened it’s doors to a newly formed section of the Scout movement aimed at 6 to 8 year olds. The Beaver Colony’s first meeting was a great success with fifteen boy’s turning up for the first meeting. Ruth Mather, the mother of one of the Cubs, was the Beaver Leader and she was helped by Megan Summers, Caroline Berry and two of the Scout Troop’s patrol leaders, Michael Dale and Robin Gilchrist. Within six months the numbers had risen to twenty two and the colony got a third helper when Nicola Harrison started.

The end of 1986 saw another new Leader for the Beavers in the form of Alison Tilbury, but it also saw Michael Dale leave to join the army in January 1987. Within a matter of months Michael was replaced by another scout called Michael, when Michael Barber started helping, together with Gordon Harrison, another member of the Scout Troop.

1986 saw Gillian Pearson being appointed as the new Assistant District Commissioner (Beavers). Her promotion was followed a year later by her husband Michael, when he was appointed as Assistant District Commissioner (Cubs). He didn’t leave the Group altogether though and stayed with the Pack as an Assistant Cub Leader.

In the same year Mike became ADC (Cubs), Helen Rogers took over the Cub Pack from him. Derek Bennett resigned as the Group’s Venture Scout Leader to be replaced by former Scout and helper, Christopher Dixon.

In 1991 one of Ritson’s ex Scouts made world headlines during the Gulf conflict. Adrian Nichol, patrol leader of the Kestrels in 1979, was navigator in a Tornado shot down on one of the first bombing missions of the conflict. He was captured and paraded on TV (using his middle name of John) together with his pilot (John Peters) all over the world. Adrian was released at the end of the conflict and even made a visit to the Group, presenting us with a signed picture of a tornado.

Two other ex-scouts also served in the Gulf, but only found out they were both in the area when Michael Dale and Phillip Rossiter bumped in to each other at a fuel dump in the middle of the desert.

December 1991 saw Megan Summers leave the Beaver Colony after five years. It also saw three long term helpers become official Leaders when Michael (Mick) Barber and David Dale took out warrants as Assistant Scout Leaders and Gordon Harrison became Assistant Cub Leader, together with Lisa Lee, the sister of one of the Cubs.

The Group also had a new helper at the Beaver Colony when Joanne Hopkins, a work mate of Ruth’s joined.

A year later in 1992, Barney Carr retired as GSL with a surprise party at the hut. He was replaced as the GSL by Dudley Rogers while Barney took over as the Group Chairman.

The summer of 1992 also saw the Beavers lose their founding Leader when Ruth Mather left. A notice was put in Ritson’s Review in March that year asking for someone to take over the job of Beaver Leader, and then again in June saying that the Colony might have to close if a new leader was not found to open after the school holiday. Luckily a new leader was found when former Beaver helper Nicola Harrison came back to the Group, after a four year break, to become the Beaver Leader.

In 1993 David Dale took over from Christopher Dixon as the Venture Scout Leader, a role he continued with until the Venture Scout unit ended a year later in 1994. When the Venture Unit closed David went back to the Scout Troop as an assistant leader.

In 1994 Mike Pearson who was ADC (Cubs) became the District Commissioner (DC), a job he did for 9 years. Later that year Mick Barber and Joanne Hopkins got married, complete with a guard of honour from the Group. Two years later saw another marriage when Nicola Harrison left the Beaver Colony in 1996 to marry former Scout, Michael Dale. The Colony was handed over to Joanne Barber who was the Beaver Leader until 1997 when Lesley Harrison took over from her. 1996 also saw David Dale leave the Group.