The 7th Crawley Scout Group was founded in May 1966 and has its roots firmly in Furnace Green.
The Cub Pack was first to emerge, quickly followed by the Scout Troop. The first meetings took place in the former Robert May Junior school in Furnace Drive. Many supporters gave their time and effort to obtain a permanent Headquarters and raised the necessary funds for that purpose. A sum of £9,000 was needed. After negotiating with the Crawley Borough Council and the Commission For The New Towns for some years, our present site at Waterlea, Furnace Green was obtained.
Building work was started in 1974 and the Headquarters was officially opened on 13th January 1975 by the President of the District Scouts Executive. The building is of a concrete structure measuring 73 feet (22.25m) by 39 feet (11.88m), divided up into a main hall, ladies and gents toilets, kitchen, committee room and store (with a mezzanine at each end of the building for further storage).
The Union flag displayed in the HQ was presented at our foundation ceremony by our first Group Scout Leader, Alf Porter (Guv) and the Scout Section flag by the ‘Mothers Club of Furnace Green’ a year later.
The Venture Unit (now a District run section called ‘Explorers’) was formed in 1983, a second Cub Pack (Wealden) was formed in 1986 and the Beaver Section also came into being in the same year.
The Group Headquarters suffered an arson attack on 4th May 1997 with restoration and repair costing over £50,000. The HQ was closed for 8 months during re-building but Scouting continued and the Group moved temporarily to the Church Hall of St. Andrews’ Church in Furnace Green. Laura Moffit, MP for Crawley, officially re-opened the HQ upon completion of the repairs.
The Group was awarded the District ‘Cornwell’ trophy shield in 1997 in recognition of maintaining full continuity of all sections despite not having a habitable headquarters building and having three long standing leaders leave the team because they had moved right out of the area.
The County Standard was awarded to the Group in 2004 and has been renewed on satisfaction of the requirements of a high standard of scouting ever since.
The ‘Cornwell’ trophy shield was again awarded to the Group in 2008 for being a Group that has offered a high standard of the Scouting in the area for a continuous period of 10 years.
So far, over 1000 boys and girls have progressed through this Group.
The Scout movement is ever growing and we at 7th Crawley are all very proud of the contribution that all the volunteer leaders, supporters, parents and, especially the young members make to this Group
PCM – Updated August 2014