As I remember the railway station was called Lochearnhead because it overlooked a loch “Loch Earn” but over the year since I
mistakenly recalled it as our visit to Loch Earn. I struggle to remember in detail the journey to camp but what little I will recall.
We travelled in a Bedford Mini Bus, with another van carrying our equipment, up the A 1 including throughout the night, stopping
at Scotch Corner, and one stop in Perth for a “wiz” and refreshments.
Another incident I recall was asking Bob (Mr Newton) why he flashed his headlights when another van or lorry over took us. He
explained to us “It’s to let the vehicle know it’s clear to pull in after overtaking us” So throughout the night this continued,
sometimes we would do it, and other lorries and vans did it for us if we overtook. We were quite impressed if I recall with this,
another little bit of knowledge that Bob would pass onto us as Goldings. As I remember the trip was tedious, especially
throughout the night so we did do a lot of “catnapping” until we finally arrived.
We were there to try and achieve our “Gold Award” for which we had to hike 50 miles.
We had to follow the contours of a mountain, which included us going over the top of the mountain, which was the distance set
out for us to cover 50 miles.
Part way into the exercise we came across a railway line, so decided to follow this direction instead of the official route, and
reached camp to be confronted by Mr Newton “How did you lot get over that mountain, because I have been out looking for
you?? “Well SIR we must have arrived at the camp before you”
That night we went down stream and found a dead sheep in the stream, so we didn’t go any further because we didn’t want to
“come across what killed it?” so we went back to our camp fire, then back to our tents to sleep.
Next morning we were getting ready for the next part of the 50-mile trek when Mr Newton said “I will come with you on this part
of the trek” (we think he smelled a rat don’t you) so this time we had to climb the mountain and he made us read the map and take
Also I remember picking up the compass and saying “Mr Newton do we need this Sir”
“Well done lad, we wouldn’t get far without it”!
We got to see the Highlands on this adventure, of which I am very grateful to Mr Newton for the opportunities he along with other
Staff gave to us at “Goldings”
In 1962 or 3 Mr Wheatley granted permission for the scouts to use “Top Field” about 4 or 500 hundred I think for weekend camp
and I remember one Scoutmaster came up in his sports car, it was a red Sunbeam, because at that age we lads were well impressed
with cars, especially “Sports Cars”.
Throughout my years at Goldings I went on many similar “Camps” of which I was very fortunate when you consider there was
nearly 200 boys and I was regularly picked.
Bob Cooper McNamara Somerset 1962-66. (Bobby Mac)