Southampton City Network at Isle of Wight Revolution

Posted on Monday, April 27th, 2015

Over the Easter weekend 11 intrepid Network members headed off to the Isle of Wight for Revolution, an annual Network and Explorer camp. As ever, the programme boasted an excellent range of activities during the day and a whole bunch of evening entertainment, and it did not disappoint.

Our camp started on Thursday. After the obligatory ferry to the island (with four investitures on the sail over), setting up our incredibly orange mess tent and a trip to the supermarket we were ready to go. Revolution starts with an opening ceremony where each group is personally welcomed onto the camp. After the ceremony the evening welcome party started. We donned our finest fancy dress on a ‘famous fives’ theme (a 5 a side football team and the Scooby Doo gang) and headed on over.The evening was completed by a rousing evening of songs around the fire.
Friday saw a very adrenaline filled day with shooting, archery, hovercraft driving and rage buggies. Our shooting practice paid off (thanks Andy!) with some great shots over the morning but archery was a bit more variable. Hovercraft driving was great fun and involved charging around a field trying and generally failing to navigate around a course of poles. Then there were rage buggies which really gave everyone the chance to kick up some mud and get sliding around corners. There was a slightly terrifying moment where Oli tried to run us over and then promptly destroyed the finish line – rightly so, that made the morning newsletter the next day! The evening was topped off with the disco and fire.
Saturday morning started off with a very chilly dip in the sea during sea kayaking. After a paddle out from shore everyone surfed back in and climbed up a steep shingle bank, only to slide back down it into the sea a few minutes later. After drying off and warming up it was time to get off to a sea shanty workshop. I think it’s fair to say that we were a bit suspicious of this activity after last year’s run in with the overly complex modern jive. Sea shanties turned out to be much more manageable and we learnt a group dance that we had the chance to do later on in the evening with the whole camp. Finally, it was off to zorbing. Sadly it was just too windy to safely zorb so we got to play with an auto belaying climbing wall (can you do it without your feet?) and had another, more successful go at archery – practice makes perfect! After dinner we took part in family fortunes and did absolutely abysmally. Time for the traditional evening campfire!
Sunday was the last day of activities, the first of which was an aerobics session (read: lie in). That was followed by an hour in the pool with their ‘underwater treasure hunt’ activity which involved lots of incredibly perplexing games that I’m certain nobody knew the rules for. After that we headed off to the much anticipated ‘Head Hunters’ – a giant game of laser tag capture the flag set in a forest. Our team defended our base well but sadly lost – we’re blaming the explorers in our team who kept shooting each other! We returned to camp for the closing ceremony which included the obligatory task of fitting the whole camp into one photograph. We had one last disco where we accidentally started a conga and then headed off for one last chance for a truly Network style camp fire (throw 5 pallets on and retreat quickly).
On Monday morning we enjoyed one last bacon butty breakfast and packed up camp. Having seen a turret poking over the hedge we had a quick wander and found that there was a tank show going on next door. After bimbling around the show we headed off to the beach to enjoy a lazy afternoon in the sun before before returning to Southampton to be reunited with our showers! After such a great camp no doubt we’ll be back next year!