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Cubs: A Capital Adventure

posted 2 Nov 2011, 15:04 by Jack Fletcher   [ updated 21 Aug 2013, 15:09 by Stephen Harrison ]
London was on the adventure agenda for cubs around the district last weekend when over 40 cubs from 6 different packs hit the capital for one big, capital adventure!

It all started on a sunny Friday morning in October when a flash mob of young people arrived at Washington Services, a gleaming white coach with a rather familiar face in the driver’s seat. As you can imagine, everyone (including the leaders) could hardly contain themselves for the adventure that was about to unfold.

Everyone set off in the best of moods, people settled in on the coach, but, no sooner had everyone sat down on the coach - they were all back off for a spot of lunch (yes, time really did pass that quickly). A quick break brought refreshments and, before anyone knew it, cubs were off again heading for London. Everyone arrived safely at the accommodation and cubs were taken to their rooms but, no time to explore the hostel, it was tea time, then Cubs departed for Buckingham Palace, where they could see the Queen’s Guards on duty, Trafalgar Square where recently a replica of HMS Victory was placed in a bottle, and, not to mention the olympic clock, counting down to London 2012. Finally, a right turn took Cubs past ‘The Cenotaph’ and, to Downing Street, concluding the journey by walking past The Houses of Parliament and near the London Eye, which was lit up in a vast array of colours.

The next morning brought more energy and excitement (despite the roadworks at 4am)! Following breakfast was a short stroll to the Science Museum, where, we headed straight up to ‘Launchpad’. Launchpad was an area designed as a hands on environment to show how science worked. There was dry ice, a shadow wall, some interesting ways of hearing music, and, a huge echo tunnel! But, the science didn’t stop there as everyone was invited to watch an explosions show with two of our cubs even volunteering; bang, Flash, Wallop -  big glows and loud bangs! Following the show, everyone visited an exhibit called ‘Do Not Touch’, and, it was more of an experiment than an exhibit. The title was designed to play with your mind and test it's curiosity, of course, when you did touch the pole in the centre of the sign, you got an electric shock! A quick detour to the shop, then lunch, then, onwards. But the fun didn’t stop at the science museum...

Cubs get scared when they see the T-RexThe Natural History museum is infamous for it’s huge displays, and, a relatively new addition of a giant globe in which an escalator 20ft high passes through taught cubs about how the earth came to be, then, if that wasn’t enough, it was time for the dinosaurs. The dinosaurs included huge skeletons, but, nothing prepared cubs for the robotic Tyrannosaurus Rex which could pick people out from the crowd and interact with them.

After the day of fun, it was time for tea, and then time to hit the West End! Shrek: The Musical was next, with huge flying dragons swooping over the audience, flames and sing-along music - for cubs, this was a truly fantastic experience and one which will undoubtedly be forgotten in a hurry.

Despite the rather hectic Saturday, cubs were up bright and early on Sunday morning, ready for the tour guide of London. Eileen and Jackie, our two tour guides arrived bright and early, climbed aboard the busses and guided us around the city telling cubs about every little twist and turn. Cubs got a leg stretch at St Paul’s cathedral and walked over The Millennium Bridge, and, if that wasn’t enough - there was a street act of a man with no face - just clothing! Back aboard the bus, next stop; City Hall. The bus went passed the new tallest building in London - ‘The London Bridge Shard’ which was over 300m high! Everyone then arrived at city hall and had fantastic views of Tower Bridge, The Tower of London and the 30 St Mary Axe (The Bullet) building.

Following the tour, cubs had lunch and then took a trip on the London eye with the tour guides so they could see everywhere where they’d been over the weekend. Finally, the tour guides had to say goodbye - but it wasn’t the end for cubs!

The marvellous weekend culminated when the bus exploded in singing (and some seated dancing), no sooner had the weekend begun, it was over! Cubs had a fantastic time exploring the streets of London, and, we’ve already been asked if the trip will be running again next year. Photos are, as ever, online in the photo's zone.

Cubs in Houghton-Le-Spring district have the opportunities participate in many events and trips outside of usual meeting hours to provide an enriched experience to these young people; this is also continued in the next stage of scouting - Scouts.