Leader Skills Training Weekend 2019

Following the Leader Skills Training Event last year the Youth Programme Team will once again be running a Leader Skills Training event on the weekend of the 11th – 13th October 2019 at Thriftwood Scout Camp Site.

The event will be an opportunity to not only learn and develop your basic Scouting skills but also an opportunity to network with other like minded leaders from across the county.

Training sessions will run from 9am on Saturday morning to 12:45 on Sunday, with the opportunity to take part in up to 6 sessions.

The Youth Programme Team will be subsidising the weekend, with the only cost to participants being food. Meals can be selected on the form at a cost of £3.50 per meal for breakfast and lunch, £4 per meal for Friday and Saturday DInner, with a £3 supplement for the cheese and wine tasting element of Saturday’s meal. Bookings will not be considered confirmed until payment for your place has been made.

Leader Skills Training Signup Form

The form to sign up to the event can be accessed via the link above, sign up to the event will close on the 30th July 2019.


The descriptions below give a brief outline for each of the training sessions we intend to offer over the weekend, depending on uptake the sessions on offer are subject to change:

When undertaking a journey, we need to be able to find our way around competently, sometimes in unfamiliar territory. This session talks about road maps, town maps and Ordnance Survey maps, grid references and common map symbols
Using a compass
Compasses come in different shapes and sizes and in one form or another, compasses are used on land, at sea or in the air, to help people to specify direction. This session talks about the different types of compass available and has advice on using one effectively.

Preparing a Route Card
Route planning is all about getting from A to B, and taking into consideration all the different factors which may affect the journey. This session shows you how to create a good route plan by breaking down the journey into stages, calculating how long each stage will take to cover and finding the total travelling time using Naismith’s Rule.

Micro Navigation
This session takes the skills from the orienteering and mapping sessions and enhancing these skills to give you the confidence to navigate to all sorts of tiny features on the map – even the smallest kink in a contour line – in poor visibility from fog to night-time.

This session follows on from the information provided in the Mapping session, identifying the differences between OS and orienteering maps and covering tips and tricks on navigating with only a map.

Tent Pitching
There are a wide range of tents available to scouts to use on camp, ranging from mess tents, traditional large, heavyweight patrol tents which sleep up to six people to lightweight one, two or three person tents. This session identifies all the equipment you will need to pitch arrange of tents, along with special tips to help you put them up – and make them stay up

Fire Lighting
Whether you are lighting the fire directly on the ground or using a raised, ready-made altar fire, it is always necessary to take time to prepare everything before you actually strike the match. This session takes you through the different kinds of fires you could build, and gives handy advice on lighting and extinguishing a fire safely

Cooking on camp
Young people camp in a variety of situations, and the choice of menu and method of preparation will depend on the type of camp and the circumstances of the site.
This session has information on the different cooking methods you may experience on camp, along with practical information on whether to use a stove or a fire.

Simple Rope Work
All knots have a purpose and it is just as important to understand what that purpose is, and when the knot is used, as having the ability to tie it. This session talks about the types of rope available, along with instructions on teaching yourself and others how to tie a variety of knots, including lashings to support pioneering projects

This session works on using ropes, spars and other equipment you may need when building a bridge, pyramid tower, swinging derrick or oil drum raft. This session will not cover the tying of knots, but the application of knows in creating pioneering projects. You will either need to be proficient in ropework, particularly square, diagonal and shear lashings – if you are not all of these are covered in the simple ropework session. (if you select pioneering and ropework we will order your session so ropework is covered before pioneering)

Axe and Sawmanship
The axe is an essential tool for all camps where open fires are used. Like any tool, the axe or saw should only be used for its correct purpose, the safety guidelines followed, it should be properly cared for and should always be treated with respect. This session helps you choose the right axe or saw, tells you how to look after them and also has safety tips

Packing a Rucksack
This Session contains information on the things that you might need to pack for going to camp and also some tips on how to pack your rucksack more effectively

Water Activity Safety
The session will cover basic water safety and provide leaders with the practical skills to safely run water activities on class C waters, alongside appropriate rescue skills to help themselves and/ or others in difficulty. In order to cover the content required the session will be a double length session lasting approximately 3.5 hours in total.

2019-05-08T19:34:15+01:00May 8th, 2019|

County Backpack Booking Now Open

County Backpack is back, another exciting event for the Scout Section. With a variety of different levels to appeal to all members of the Scout Section, County Backpack is an event not to be missed.

A two day Incident Hike around the local countryside, Scouts will need to visit as many bases as possible each day before returning back to Thriftwood, each base will have a small activity to complete before moving on to the next base.

Teams will need to attend a compulsory base at the start of the day and will then work out their own route, all bases will be manned.
Each team must consist of 4-6 scouts (all of scout age) and must be able to walk with a lightweight rucksack, teams will not need to carry tents or cooking stoves, but will need lunch and equipment for a day hike

For more information visit the event page here

2019-01-13T16:53:02+00:00January 13th, 2019|

Royal Forest Scouts beat the elements.

Scouts, Explorers and a few Guides recently took part in the annual 24 hour survival competition known as the Brass Monkey Challenge. Scouts, Guides and Explorer Scouts from all over the Royal Forest Scout District stretching from Buckhurst Hill to Moreton & Fyfield  took part. Over 150 young people attended Thriftwood Scout Camp Site in Brentwood. Here they had to build their own shelters and cook meals over an open fire whilst making camp gadgets from natural materials.

Along with this they were set tasks such as First Aid scenarios, Problem solving and a Scout Knowledge check.

The 1st Theydon Garnon team, lead by Ben Roberts aged (13yrs) and consisting of Dan Padian (12 ½) ( Henry Davies (11 ½ ), Alfie Williams (11) and Tommy Somers (11), won the competition showing great skill and determination, for their dinner they skinned and prepared rabbit and bacon sausages and built a pit fire showing true scouting skills.

Jacqui Mortimer, their Scout leader, was immensely proud of what they had achieved.


2017-03-05T15:41:13+00:00March 5th, 2017|

“Planet Earth – The Cub Camp”

We can hardly imagine living without technology especially computers i-pads and phones; 5th Canvey Island Cub Scouts did just that in their Planet Earth themed camp. 16 Cubs journeyed to Thriftwood for “Planet Earth – The Cub Camp” where they completed the woodland walk, had a group campfire where old and new songs were sung, joined a Scouts Own where we talked about how we can live without our computers and TV’s and have a fun time with our friends. They even took part in a hike to the local animal sanctuary where each group adopted their own animal. The Cubs went on to make personal scrap books with the different leaves they had collected on their travels around site and talked about the creatures and birds we saw. In the evening the Cub Scouts watched a film in the woods with popcorn, crisps and sweets and played games in the field with the young leaders. They finished off their camp with some site service; clearing a ditch where we were covered head to toe in mud.

We ate amazing food and spent lots of time laughing with our friends. I would like to thank all the leaders, young leaders and the group treasurer who all gave up their bank holiday weekend to make sure the Cubs had a great experience, a fantastic if not a little exhausting weekend.

2015-06-01T17:51:47+01:00June 3rd, 2015|


Thriftwood is located south east of Brentwood, at Ingrave, just off the A128. It is about a mile from the main town centre. Thriftwood is made up of 76 acres of woodland, and is totally fenced off from the surrounding built up area.

There are 39 secluded and well grassed sites, all with vehicular access to the entrance of each. The site has two 1 acre lakes, one for canoeing, rafting, pedalos, and swimming, and the other for fishing.

There is a large Pack Holiday Centre, which can sleep up to 32. This also has a grassed area exclusively for your use – whether this is pitching tents or playing games, etc.

There are now three toilet and shower facilities, with a fourth building due to open in early summer 2007. The new block is near Sites 21 & 22. It has 13 individual shower cubicles, disabled facilities, underfloor heating and bright modern fittings. There is no extra charge for hot water for washing or showering.

The use of wood fires is encouraged, but must be in the form of a trench fire or altar fire. Please see website or site staff for specific information.

On site activities
Climbing, abseiling, artificial ice climbing, cresta run, archery, canoeing, rafting, fishing, air rifles, cork guns, pioneering, sports, laser tag, junior crossbow, pedaloes, pedal cars, pond dipping, 3D maze, trampolines, circus skills and volley ball. Equipment is available to hire for all the above activities, and instructors for some. There is also an adventure playground, nature trail, and orienteering courses with quizzes available.

Equipment Hire
The site also have the following equipment for hire: Marquees, sleeping tents, cooking equipment, lights, tables and benches. Please contact the site for specific details.

Thriftwood is within easy reach of both London and the sea. The site also has a full time staff. The souvenir / tuck shop sells a range of souvenirs, badges, sweets & drinks. It is open regularly on Saturdays & Sundays, and also the evenings during holiday times. It is also possible to request the shop open for a group, providing more than an hours notice is given.

Daytime (up to 5 pm) – 01277 212784
Evenings (after 7 pm) – 01277 810742


2017-03-25T18:39:58+00:00March 10th, 2015|

Chelmsford District Cubs skills day

Over 80 cub scouts descended on a wet morning at Thriftwood they were all keen to learn some new skills in the morning the cubs learnt, various knows and lashings, how to build a fire, made some food to cook on the fire, the cubs learnt some mapping skills and semaphore.

in the afternoon all the cubs nearly learnt skills were brought together the cubs made ballista

Related files:

2015-01-24T23:25:00+00:00January 24th, 2015|

Thriftwood Firework Display

Join us at Thriftwood for a fantastic evening of firework fun.

Thriftwood Scout Campsite are hosting a lakeside firework display on 5th November 2014.
Gates open at 6pm, Fire lit at 6pm with Fireworks are 7pm.
Side show stalls, plus refreshments and tuck shop.
Open to all members of the Scout and Guide associations plus their families.

2014-10-13T23:00:00+01:00October 13th, 2014|

Orsett & Bulphan Scouts enjoy a wet adventure

The Scouts of Orsett & Bulphan Troops Whitmore and Petre got stuck into rafting, orienteering and the inflata-bull at Thriftwood as part of an activity day at Thriftwood Scout Activity Centre including a parents BBQ and game of rounders.

Scouts came together for their fun packed adventure at Thriftwood on Sunday 27 July. The BBQ and rounder match was a nice way to finish off the term and get everyone involved.

Gary Hayers said, “Judging by the smiles on eveyone’s faces and we finished off the day it was a very enjoyable event.”

2014-08-12T11:00:00+01:00August 12th, 2014|

Job vacancies at Belchamps Scout Activity Centre

Belchamps Scout Activity Centre are currently recruiting for a variety of paid and volunteer roles.

Belchamps Scout Activity Centre is currently recruiting for the following positions:
Guest Services assistant Up to

2014-03-11T11:00:00+00:00March 11th, 2014|

4th Billericay Scout Group Celebrates Christmas at Thriftwood

On Saturday 14th December 2013, Beavers, Cubs, and Scouts joined other young people from across Essex and other counties at Thriftwood’s ‘Campfire with Carols’ service. This is an event held anually, to give us all an opportunity to share cheer with a wide variety of traditional carols, and campfire songs modified for Christmas.

Before the campfire, which was very well attended, 4th Billericay took part in a number of activities including the 3D Maze, Cresta Run, PedalCars, Air Rifle Shooting, Cork Guns, and Crate Stacking. All involved had a fantastic time, which was assisted by fantastic weather for December.

Related files:


2014-01-03T11:00:00+00:00January 3rd, 2014|