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History of the Bounty

Ten years after the Scouts built The Endeavour they rolled up their sleeves again and built a meeting place for the Cubs. The first project was started in 1937 and their new HQ was built on the Village Green. They called it after the boat sailed by Captain Cook of which they had a model.

This achievement was followed in 1949 with the building of The Bounty named after Captain’s Bligh ship.

A report by the County Commissioner Mr E G Neate at the time said “early this year the Cub Pack had its former meeting place sold over its head and the pack was homeless”. In the Groups archives the 1st Godstone Scouts have a log recording the progress of the building of The Bounty written by one of the Scouters. Here are some extracts from it, it is titled “The Bounty, Rough Notes, Being the story of the second Endeavour”. It stated “the idea of the building is, as every Tudor manor has its dovecote so The Endeavour should have one and the Cubs have an HQ”. By December 1948 licences and planning permission had been granted for the building and the first material was bought the following February, although it was not planned to start the building until the evenings lengthened.”

16 April 1949 – “We started and took off the turf all over, stripped the site is the correct term”.

19 April 1949 – “We, Dinx and I started in the afternoon and Wen and Dinx carried on during the evening and Tom and Ron came towards the end and the footings were dug”.

1 May 1949 – “The under damp course of bricks is laid with air bricks set in cement and the damp course is laid”.

4 September 1949 – (lunchtime) “I expect this afternoon will be a washout but this morning has been wonderful. There lying on the ground was the ton and a half of oak joists. They are all up now and most are set. Let us remember this morning, we feel terribly emotional about it”.

6 September 1949 – “Another 500 bricks laid and the rest of the oak cut”.

13 September 1949 – “Yesterday afternoon I wore out my fingers laying bricks. This evening we made corner plates and worked on oak. Some wonderful offers of help lately. Mr Wilks made electricity conduct wires and fittings. Mr E Gibbs to help with the cutting of the roof. Mr A Crowhurst laid the paths, Mr O Fisher laid the lower floor and Mr Prior did the plastering, if only we could get a few bricklayers, hope all offers of help come off OK”.

17 September 1949 – “As a matter of interest I was much afraid that we might be a bit out of true owing to use ‘eye’ so much”.

1 October 1949 – (Morning) “We have gone through much this week, on Monday Bill suggested that perhaps Charlie Waters would help with the scaffolding. He couldn’t do much being old and his right arm given out but he has the ‘know how’. So Tuesday morning I sent Harry up and with CW they had the scaffold up by Wednesday evening. J Kent’s bricklayer did not appear so I had a swipe at it Thursday afternoon. Shaw said he saw a bricklayer walking across the Green so got him started at 4pm. Better late than never. By last night despite a snag inside gable wall rear is up and last frame set. Meanwhile Tuesday evening we got on with the gargoyles”.

12 November 1949 – “Scouts were first to take part in Troup of the Week on Radio Luxembourg programme “The Voice of Scouting” when the building of The Bounty was mentioned”.

20 November 1949 – “Pointing finished, pipes painted. Arthur Crowhurst’s wonderful path was completed during the week and Mr Wills fine heater arrived and is terrific. Main room clean, floor and bits of electric light finished and The Bounty is on her way”.

4 December 1949 – “Got on well with the dozen or so jobs, small ones but important that remain. Most finished now”.

The last entry is 6 December 1949 – “Arts with Sennit and Derek worked well. Ted came and plastered upstairs during the day. Then this evening we finished staining upstairs and down, cleared up and now for the floor tilers. Were you one of the Scouts who helped build The Endeavour and The Bounty?”

Nearly 2000 man and boy hours of voluntary labour had gone into it. To get the shape and proportions it was necessary to look at scores of old dovecotes and then from them to aim at a perfect one. The large open hall 17ft square inside should be the ideal size for the Cubs and their games. The first floor with the four gabled recesses, just right for their lairs. The height of the main room, 10ft should allow their rope climbing without bumping their heads too much when they slip.

In more recent years the Bounty has proven to be too small for the Cub Scouts, Its is now home to the Godstone Parish Council.