HISTORY OF GUESTWELL
The first Guestling Cub Pack was
formed in 1948, by the Group Scout Leader Reg Dicker, the Pack
met on Saturday mornings at the old headquarters (now the site
of the Telephone Exchange at the top of Chapel Lane, Guestling).
Reg and his wife maintained the site for 20
years, with its wonderful collection of trees. Unfortunately a lot have been
lost through site development.
In those early days, Mrs Ashby was the Cub Scout
Leader, until her retirement in 1962.
The Wolf Cub flag is still around today, but is
know longer on display. After Mrs Ashby retired, the Pack continued to meet
occasionally until 1964, when it finally closed.
When a Cub Pack was restarted under the name of
14th Hastings (Fairlight), in March 1977, Reg kindly agreed to let the pack use
the old headquarters and grounds. The Scout Troop was started on 3rd September
In February 1976, the G.P.O. claimed the land
and our Headquarters, under a compulsory purchase order, and the 14th were given
notice to quit.
After a lot of searching for a suitable site, in
the area, and receiving refusals at every request, the present site was given to
the Scouts and Guides, by the late Reverend Bill Manners himself, once a Kings
Scout. After he retired the site was leased from the Church for a small
Building commenced in April 1976, and was
officially opened by George Herbert, the County Scout Commissioner on 28th May
In 1997, it was found that the Church were
selling of land, and in 1998 the Hastings & Rye District Scouts agreed to
purchase the land Guestwell is built on to safeguard our future and hopefully
forever, again we pay them a small rent.
The building has changed a little, on the
inside, in 1998 the toilets and kitchen were modernised with the help of
parents, Leaders and various local grants. They were formally opened by the then
Chairman Mr Robin Silvestor.
The Guestwell emblem was discovered in a box,
tucked in a corner of a caravan on the old site, and it was thought appropriate
to use that emblem for the present Group, in recognition of all the help that
the Group and Scouting had received from Reg Dicker.
The name Guestwell is a combination of Guestling
(the village) and Gilwell (the home of Scouting). The emblem is now incorporated
in t e 1066 Rangers Flag and is worm on the back the distinctive red and green
By the main entrance is our wall Wall of
friendship, displaying the County, District, and Group Badges, also some
nametapes of Groups who have camped here, and, whose company we have enjoyed, so
Our visitors from overseas have arrived from
Switzerland, Sweden and France.