Members of Macclesfield and Congleton District Scouts, and their leaders, came together to celebrate the re-opening of the District Scout Museum at Barnswood Scout Camp recently.
It is unique in that it is the only Scouting museum outside of the organisation’s headquarters, near London.
The event was well-supported by local dignitaries, and included the official opening ceremony which was carried out by mayor of Macclesfield Cllr Adam Schofield.
Local MP David Rutley spoke with Scout chaplain and museum curator Trevor MacKay and fellow museum curator Tracey Parry about the tremendous efforts of local volunteers in restoring the museum over many years.
He took the opportunity to thank those who’d supported the project.
The District Scout Museum was the inspiration of the late Norman Gosling, former president of the local district, who worked tirelessly to raise the funds needed to set up the museum.
Mr Gosling succeeded in furnishing the museum, obtaining archives and exhibits on the rich history of the Scout movement from as far as America, Africa, Canada and beyond, as well as from local Scout groups and former Scout members.
The local district Scout committee is committed to preserving and promoting Mr Gosling’s impressive seventy-year legacy by continuing to make the museum an interesting, educational and inspiring place for the young people who visit it.
Macclesfield Town Council supported the development and refurbishment of the museum with a community grant of £1,750.
The grant has enabled the installation of a new floor, storage cupboards and worktops for the memorabilia.
Mayor of Macclesfield, Cllr Schofield commented: “As a former Scout it was an honour for me to open the refurbished Scout museum, Scouting means so much to so many, including myself.
“I am pleased that the town council was able to support this great project through the grants programme.”
Museum curator Trevor commented: “The grant from Macclesfield Town Council has enabled us to secure a future for the museum and its precious memorabilia.
“The building has been professionally sealed so that the pieces of history can be fully protected from the wildlife in the area.
“A small team of volunteers have worked endlessly for the last 12 months to make this happen. It is a real community project and we hope that people enjoy these memories for many years to come.”
Also present at the opening ceremony were Sir Nicholas Winterton, former MP for Macclesfield, and his wife Lady Ann Winterton, former MP for Congleton.
Sir Nicholas has long supported the local scouting movement, and opened the original Barnswood Museum back in 2007.
Speaking after the event, current Macclesfield MP David Rutley said: “Macclesfield has a strong and active tradition of Scouting, and it is great to see this commemorated and celebrated in the newly-refurbished District Scout Museum.
“I would like to pay tribute to all the volunteers who have helped to support the restoration of the museum, and hope that it inspires yet more young people to take part in the scouting movement.”
(back row, L-R) Trevor Mackay (district chaplain and museum curator); Sir Nicholas Winterton (district president and former MP for Macclesfield)
(front row, L-R), David Rutley (current MP for Macclesfield); Cllr Adam Schofield (mayor of Macclesfield); Tracy Parry (Cub Scout leader and museum curator); Mark Eden (district commissioner).
(L-R) Cllr Gareth Jones (Macclesfield Town Council); Tracy Parry (Cub Scout leader and museum curator); Trevor Mackay (district chaplain and museum curator); Cllr Adam Schofield (mayor of Macclesfield)