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Scouts / Sea scouts .. Whats the difference?

(10 Posts)
SquirtedPerfumeUpNoseInBoots Fri 21-Sep-12 22:47:46

My DS Aged 11 has been at a scout group from aged 4. He's been to squirrels, beavers, cubs, and moved to scouts last year. He's loved all of it.

DS wants to move to another troop in our town but they are sea scouts not scouts. I'm sure it's just a different uniform not ethos but I don't know. He knows a few other boys who go to this sea scout group. The reason he wants to move is that they seem to do more camping and other activities but reading between the lines it might well be because one particular boy joined scouts at the same time he did.

So what's the actual difference? He went tonight to try it out in his scout uniform (with all his badges on) and was apparently told he will have to go through investiture as there's no proof he was a scout. Is that right? Or is it for each individual troop?

Plus my mum will be pissed because the scout troop is attached to our church and the whole family have been associated with that particular scout / guiding troop. But I can handle that bit smile

I'm more interested in the actual difference between the two than the uniform and the investing thing.

TheOneAndOnlyMaryZed Fri 21-Sep-12 22:54:36

I'm in Ireland, and here there is a massive difference between Sea Scouts and Scouts (although we are part of the same organisation).

There isn't so much of a difference at beaver/cub level (although they would do more water activities than we would), but at scout level many things are very different.

Most of their activities would be water based. They would be linked to either canoe/sea kayak/sailing clubs and much of their activity programme would be based around this. Where we are the Sea Scouts are very good - camps would involve sailing, they would get qualifications in various water activities, do life guarding and water safety with the relevant authorities etc.

If we were nearer the sea and had the choice I would have signed my children up to sea scouts, but it wasn't practical for us.

For you, it will depend on the individual group and the leaders within it. The number of activities depends on the enthusiasm of the leaders, rather than on the specific Scout/Sea Scout name.

Here he wouldn't have to be invested, but maybe where you are they are two different organisations?

BackforGood Fri 21-Sep-12 23:01:03

It depends hugely on the troop, and the Leadership at the time.
One sea Scout troop near us has admiralty recognition, and, in order to get that has an annual admiralty inspection, which requires much practice of marching, ceremonies, and genreally looking very, very smart wouldn't have suited my ds at all.
Another one I know well, is absolutely no different from ordinary scouts, except they wear a different uniform.
A 3rd is quite water based, but then, their HQ is right on the side of a big pond/lake on which they can do water activities on a troop night.

As a generalisation I'd say they are likely to do more water based activities, but that really is a generalisation and not an absolute.

BackforGood Fri 21-Sep-12 23:01:33

By the way..... what on earth is a 'Squirrel' ? grin

TheOneAndOnlyMaryZed Fri 21-Sep-12 23:06:42

Squirrels are pre-beavers are they?

We can't have them. For some reason Scouting Ireland doesn't even want beavers - they think kids shouldn't be scouts until they can understand and abide by the "proper" promise hmm

Our Sea Scouts don't do much marching I don't think. But then, the Irish Navy isn't much of a navy really (one ship I think)

SirGOLDBoobs Fri 21-Sep-12 23:19:52

I was a sea cadet for many years, and the sea scouts annoyed the hell out of us as they were always on our boatwork courses but did NO proper drill. Still irritates me now thinking about it, three years after I left grin blush

Here is the Sea Scout info page from the Scout website, hope that helps.

BackforGood Fri 21-Sep-12 23:21:35

No Squirrels in the Scout Association in England and Wales.

SquirtedPerfumeUpNoseInBoots Fri 21-Sep-12 23:39:23

Thanks all, that was quick!

I'm in northern Ireland. They do seem to be different organisations with different representations at rememberance day for example. But that maybe my perception. I am on the coast no matter where I go, so that might be useful.

Squirrels are the ones before beavers when they start at age 4 in primary school and look really cute in their wee jumpers with the badges on. <tears in eyes at the memory>

Thanks MaryZ and I'll have a look at that link SirGold. Backforgood, I know the helper out at the sea scouts and will have a word.

I would like DS to have a knowledge of scouting principles, and if he can get the same from sea scouts and be a happier boy with the people there then his scout group then happy days.

lljkk Mon 24-Sep-12 08:12:38

I suggest, Go with whichever group has the best reputation.
Sea Scouts is just like the other scouts, but they do more on the water. How much more on the water depends on local facilities & resources.
DS Sea Scout group spends maybe 14 sessions/yr on the Norfolk Broads, all in summer months.
We also considered Air Scouts locally (they have the best uniform).

As a (Sea) Scout DS has had overnight outings, Air Rifles, butchered a squirrel, had night hikes, worked towards the usual Scout badges, played lots of ManHunt, fund-raised, etc. All usual scout things, I think.

throckenholt Mon 24-Sep-12 10:13:03

My DS has only been a sea scout since Easter. But as far as I can see from the program in the summer and up until Christmas is must be pretty much the same as scouts. Hiking, outdoor cooking, skinning a rabbit, that kind of stuff. Nothing very water based but then we have no real water based places near us. No-one is quite sure why they are sea scouts rather than scouts (something lost in the past when the group was set up I guess). They are all part of the scout movement. The jumper is more expensive I think !

I guess it depends a lot on your local group - I would ask around locally and then decide.

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