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SWAN 73 Applications now open!
04/09/2022 By Web Developer








31st March - 8th April 2023

Learn to sail. Explore the Norfolk Broads. Have an adventure.


Scouts, Explorers and Young Leaders who will be aged 13 or over on 31st March 2023 are invited to apply for the SWAN Norfolk Broads Sailing Expedition (31st March - 8th April 2023).


The SWAN Expedition is an 8-day adventure in Norfolk, sailing classic river cruiser yachts in crews of 3-5.


Learn to sail a classic river cruise yacht as part of a small crew in the charge of an experienced Broads skipper who holds the appropriate Scout Association Permit. We live aboard the yachts for 7 days, sleeping cooking and eating aboard with the whole crew taking part in all aspects of sailing and housekeeping. During the week we explore the rivers and broads with a different mooring each night.


If you are interested and would like more information please get in touch.

Applications can be made directly via these links.

For more information and to apply, visit our Facebook page:




Or access the forms directly by typing the following into your browser:


https://bit.ly/S73Adult (for 18 and over)

https://bit.ly/S73Young (for under 18’s)


For picture of previous expeditions see: https://www.flickr.com/photos/swanxx/albums/with/72157689871727280

Most of the fleet are hired from The Norfolk Heritage Fleet: https://www.huntersyard.co.uk/our-boats/cabin-yachts/ 
We also have yachts from Swallowtail Boatyard: http://www.swallowtailboats.co.uk/hirefleet.html 
and Eastwood Whelpton: https://www.eastwood-whelpton.co.uk/the-fleet/


Yours In Scouting,


Remus Sawyerr


07824 776676


Cost £330 (+ transport) Applications close on 1st October 2022.

All pre-expedition training will take place locally in Winchester


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Minehead Jamboree 6th-8th January 2023
23/09/2022 By Richard Mendelsohn

The Scouts in Salisbury & South Wilts District are very excited to share with you an amazing opportunity to join them at the Minehead Jamboree from 6th-8th January 2023. This is an exciting weekend open to all Cubs, Scouts and Explorers and will be held at Butlin’s Minehead for an exclusive weekend of Scouting activities and entertainment. To find out more about the weekend check out our website at www.mineheadjamboree.org.uk and follow our Facebook page: @mineheadjamboree for new updates. They look forward to welcoming you. 

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SWAN Norfolk Broads Sailing Expedition
03/05/2022 By Web Developer

SWAN 73 Friday 31st March - Saturday 8th April 2023

Sailing expedition in the Norfolk Broads.


https://bit.ly/S73Young (for under 18’s)

All training takes place in Winchester.

The SWAN Expedition | Facebook 

Basic SWAN Expedition Information

The week-long expedition starts at Wroxham Scout HQ Friday evening and involves meeting your crew for the week, discussing meal plans, briefings and dinner. Saturday morning, breakfast; then to the local supermarket in our crews to purchase supplies for the week. We have lunch at the HQ and then pick up the boats at 2pm and set sail!

For the next 7 days the expedition explores the Norfolk Broads, mooring for the night at different locations. Most of the boats don't have engines so use is made of tides and wind to get around.  Typically, the expedition covers 130 km. in the week.  The day starts at sunrise, getting the boats ready to sail to maximise daylight.  Some days will involve cooking on the go and sailing for the whole day until the evening destination is reached. Other days less distance is travelled and time is taken sailing on some of the broads (lakes) located on the ‘Broads’’ rivers. This could be training time, games or rafting up on mudweights to have lunch.

Once the expedition reaches its destination for the night, the fleet moors up.  The boats are made ready for sleeping; cooking and eating dinner in crews takes place; ‘Gatherings’ and then bed.  Gathering groups are made up of 6-8 similar aged participants and meet each night on one of the boats. They are either social gatherings (games) or are training gatherings led by one of the experienced skippers on specific aspects of broads sailing (e.g. tides and navigation).  The sailing plan is dependent on weather and changes are made if needed.

On the last Friday the boats are returned to the boat yards around midday.  Boats are tidied and kit packed ready for handover the following morning.  On Friday evening there is a celebration night including songs and fish and chips.  The expedition sleeps on the boats one final night and Saturday morning goodbyes are said before groups travel home.

Part of the expedition is a training programme which aims to progress people to skipper level (obtain a Scout Adventurous Activity Permit (Yachting)). There is a progress book to complete and 4 levels to work through. The programme is challenging and can take one or even more expeditions to progress a level.  Permit assessment weekends each year ensure new skippers are assessed and current permit holders’ assessment is reviewed.  Passing this gives you a Scout Yachting Permit which allows you to be a skipper and take charge of your own boat.  Your permit lasts for five years before needing to be renewed and can be used in scouting outside of SWAN.

The SWAN Expedition is currently administered within Peterborough Scout District and managed by the SWAN Scout Active Support Unit.

The SWAN Expedition | Facebook 

SWAN a long, but brief History

The first SWAN Norfolk Broads Sailing Expedition took place in 1950 led by ‘The Admiral’ Geoff Keighley (1924 – 2008). He took a group of 15 Senior and Patrol Leaders from the 26th Shrewsbury Scout Troop, on 4 cabin yachts with only one week’s sailing experience. The week was such a success it was run as a 26th Shrewsbury event again the following year and then again and so on until 1964. In 1964 Shropshire scouts joined the expedition for the first time this was the start of expansion that would result in the SWAN we know today. With members from all over the country brought by Scout leaders who were once scouts themselves on the SWAN expedition.  It now includes members from as far afield as Shropshire, Hampshire, Devon, Mid-Wales, Cheshire, Cambridgeshire, Sussex, Kent, Derbyshire, Surrey, Wiltshire, Norfolk and Cumbria.  As a result, the numbers sailing each year are around 80, split across up to 20 boats.

This expansion resulted in the formalisation of the SWAN training scheme which was developed by Geoff Keighley, Bryn Evans and Kester Keighley and formalised at a meeting in The Forest of Dean in 1980. The training scheme created covered more than the requirements for the Royal Yachting Association (R.Y.A.) National Keelboat Certificates and in 1995, SWAN, through a local sailing school started to award RYA certificates alongside the SWAN levels.


The scheme was revised in 2010 in conjunction with the SWAN leadership and agreed by Gordon “Rusty” Carter of the Baden Powel School of sailing, Brundall, Norfolk.

The expedition has always had a high standard of training, enabling people as young as 17 to become competent skippers of inland yachts on tidal waters.

Many people have come and gone through the years and they all say one thing;


“I can't wait till next year!!!”

More about Remus

I am currently a member of the Winchester Active Support Unit with a specific interest in Norfolk Broads Sailing. Also, I am a member of the Peterborough ASU for SWAN, an annual Scout Sailing Expedition that takes place around Easter each year. I have been Scouting in Winchester for more years than I care to remember, starting as a cub scout in what was then 18th Winchester Littleton, which amalgamated into what is now the 1st Winchester. My Scouting has involved cubs, scouts and venture scouts; scout leadership; ADC scouts and mountaineering adviser; young leadership training; and attendance at two world scout jamborees, one as a UK contingent troop leader. Outside of scouting I have worked in education for over thirty years and I am a keen musician playing trombone in bands, orchestras and small ensembles. I am looking forward to supporting as many Scouts/Explorer Scouts and leaders to become active participants in the SWAN Scouting Expedition. The ‘W’ in SWAN stands for Winchester and historically many Winchester scouts and leaders have taken part in the expedition that has been run for over 70 years. It would be great to see you on the expedition very soon.

Remus Sawyerr


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Expedition to The Gambia
21/03/2022 By Web Developer

Expedition to The Gambia - Hampshire Scouts

Three weeks August 2023

WHERE? You guessed it.. to The Gambia. A small country on the west coast of Africa.  From the capital Banjul on the Atlantic coast we take the bus 200 miles up country to SOMA, a dusty fly blown town at the junction of the two main (only) roads and stay at KAIRA KONKO Scout Lodge..


WHAT? Help improve the Kaira Konko Scout centre, repair school classrooms, repair local homes in Soma… take paper, books and pencils to the primary school… improve the vegetable garden in the village .. Friday night is Scout night and we will be there sharing ideas… help at the schools. PLUS shopping at the market. Visit the village chief.. go on expeditions out of Soma in small groups with the Gambian Scouts.. and LOADS MORE!!!!!


COST  £2,000  TBC once flights are booked


WHEN? 3 weeks departing around Tuesday 8th August 2023 return about Wed 30 August 2023  (dates tbc depending on flights).


WHY?…WHY NOT?  This is an amazing chance to experience the real Africa with your mates.  It is excellent value.  Try it out.. meet new friends check out some ideas for your GAP year, get something really impressive on your CV.


WHO?? Fantastic leaders, you, your friends, any Explorer/ Network  aged who is prepared to give it a go (if they are not already a Scout then they had better join soon)


HOW? Lots of fund raising… for example, sponsored cycle, charity events, car washing …  and exciting training  so that you are ready for an adventure in Africa


Small print warning this trip could seriously change your outlook on life


Download pdf

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Winchester Hospice Challenge
03/02/2021 By District News

You may find it surprising that Winchester, the county town of Hampshire, has no hospice. The nearest is either in Andover, Southampton or Basingstoke but this is about to change.

Winchester Rotary and Scout groups in the Winchester District are joining forces to raise money for a much-needed hospice in Winchester.

More details at:





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Winchester District Scouts


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