The Dittons Scout Group was started in 1909 and formally registered in 1910, by “Uncle” Rome Atwell. The first meetings were held under a lamp post on Giggs Hill Green. There is now a plaque embedded into the grass on the northern edge of Giggs Hill Green which signifies the exact point where the original lamp post stood and those inaugural meetings took place. The names of the very first members of the Group (the inaugural 28 boys) are engraved into a brass plaque which is fixed to the lamp post.
Rome Atwell became the first Scoutmaster of The Dittons in the early summer of 1910. Moving the meeting point away from the lamp post, they then met in an old corrugated hut, sometimes known as the gymnasium, in the Churchyard at St. Nicholas Church (where the church hall now stands.) Occasionally they also met at the old fire station which stood at the corner of Giggs Hill Green and Watts Road.
The lamp post (originally gas fired) under which early meetings were held now stands at the entrance to our car park.
Their first permanent headquarters was built in 1922 at the corner of Brooklands Road between the railway arches, on the site which is now occupied by the 1st Hinchley Wood headquarters. In 1932 the group moved to ‘The Shack,’ a combination of a gift of land from a good friend of Scoutmaster Rome Atwell, and hard work from the members of the Group who built it from scratch. It is considered to be one of the best headquarters in the County of Surrey 85 years later.
The 1932 Committee (formed in 2011) is now responsible for the upkeep of the Shack and the grounds.
The Grey Wolf that we wear on the back of our scarves is in memory of Uncle, who became known as the Grey Wolf of Surrey thanks to his excellent scouting abilities. He was presented with the Silver Wolf (the highest scouting award) by Baden Powell himself.
The Group archives, minutes, scripted history and old photos are safely kept by our Group President, Neville Biden. He has been able to produce a pictorial history of the Group from its humble beginnings up to the beginning of the 1950s.
This can be viewed here : http://thedittonsscoutgroup.daisy.websds.net/default.aspx