Fly On The Wall

Posted on Monday, February 27th, 2012

When I first came to Southampton in 1958 I became an Assistant Scoutmaster in Central District. Shortly afterwards I was asked to help on a Venturer Badge activity at Chorley Lodge. The badge was part of the Queen’s Scout Award which at that time was for the Senior Scouts. I cycled out to Chorley with everything I needed for my base in a rucksack. At that time it was still little more than an abandoned RAF hut with few facilities. Boyd Wallace a legendary DC of West was cooking a large bacon rasher on a primus stove with the aid of a very large sheath knife (a lasting memory).

Chorley Lodge became a well known venue in the New Forest for Scouting and other young people for 40 years. For all that time one person undertook the responsibility of the booking and administration her name was Dorrie Heather. She was, until recently, a member of our Scout District with her husband Fred. They were both very much concerned with running the 8th Scout Group who were in fact the owners of Chorley Lodge throughout that time.

It was almost impossible to talk of one without mentioning the other Their support and enthusiasm brought much to Scouting in West District over many years. Fred in fact was the driving force behind the creation of our Canoe Club. Sadly Dorrie died early in the New Year. Her funeral service was very moving and was very well attended by many who had been in scouting including Scouts and Senior Scouts of many years ago.

Fred has our sympathy for the loss of someone who has been very dear to him. We should love and honour them both for the large part of their lives they have given in service to Scouting.

“Fly” (aka Geoff Johnson)