Covid-19 (Coronavirus) updates


A Month Of Change…

It feels somewhat peculiar to begin to write this knowing how differently the month started and then finished. Nevertheless, Scouting in Central Yorkshire had another exciting, if not turbulent month!

My first meeting of the month was one chaired by Sam Morris, Deputy Chief Commissioner for England. It explored how the County is going to find its next CC.  There’s no exciting photo to accompany this but I mention it for two reasons; Maybe you’re reading this and have a passion for leading a successful County to provide even more exciting adventures to Young People?! and Secondly, Youth Shaped Scouting only works in Central Yorkshire because it’s championed at the highest level, whilst I’m cautious for what happens next I’m excited as I know whoever applies will share our passion to empower Young People to achieve incredible things.

The following week I met some colleagues from The Co-op who are developing a new online platform to host, share and advertise volunteering opportunities local to you.  It sounds so exciting and is currently being piloted in Manchester and Leeds, I look forward to seeing how Central Yorkshire can both support and benefit from the site!

The highlight of the month has to be judging North Leeds Cooking Competition! Those that may know me may argue I have a relatively limited palette so I was sceptical I’d enjoy anything that wasn’t a pizza… I couldn’t have being more wrong – Using nothing more than two gas burners some brilliant dishes were served up.  My personal favourite has to be “The Volcano” – Bangers and Mash served with the theatrics of lava gravy! A huge congratulations to 10th North Leeds for taking home the trophy and a big thanks to Richard Trout (ADC Scouts) for the invite, and the very creative wooden spoon prizes!


I should also mention a rare non-Scouting evening out to watch the City of Leeds Youth Orchestra, made even more impressive knowing it features a number of our Scouts! I’ve had the pleasure of watching them (and their partner Wind Orchestra) a number of times now and it’s brilliant to hear. Mya, Eleanor, Billy, Josh, Kai are just a few of our talented musical members!


Finally it was great to be invited to join the NCS Project Board as part of one of our National Programmes of work exploring 14-25 provision.  It was a fascinating insight into how two brilliant organisations can work together to provide even more Skills for Life to Young People.  Although Gilwell Park would’ve being a more idyllic setting than Microsoft Teams it was nonetheless a great afternoon with fellow volunteers and staff members who bring with them a wealth on enthusiasm and experience.

I have of course omitted to note the suspension of face-to-face Scouting that occurred this month as part of our Covid-19 response.  I have written a little more about this here but I would echo the notion that Scouting continues just in a different format however now more than ever other pressures and priorities are held on our Young People and Adults alike.

April’s Blog might be a challenge but speak then!

Don’t forget, you can always contact us at  We love being invited to things (Virtually)! You can also keep up to date on Twitter: @mathewmilner @sophieheadcyc @taylorscaifecyc

See you Later,



A Stormy Month!

February flew by but it remained packed full of exciting Scouting and as always we made sure to try get involved in as much as possible.

One of my first visits this month was to South Leeds & Morley’s Patrol Leaders Weekend in Drighlington amidst Storm Ciara . It was brilliant to see Gareth, Darren and leaders from across the District supporting our Young People to develop their leadership skills with the aim of delivering an event in the Summer which I look forward to joining!

This role offers so many opportunities and one of my favourites is easily engaging with our Child Friendly Leeds partners. This is especially exciting in February when the annual Child Friendly Leeds Awards are held. I’m proud to be part of an organisation doing so much for young people in Leeds (& Wakefield!) and had a great time joined by Ian (CC), Katie (AS Manager Aldwark), Sophie (DCYC) and Mya (North Leeds DYC).

Highlight of this month has to be our annual weekend away with our County Youth Team! We went to Aldwark where we have to thank the crew for their hospitality and support when Storm Dennis began to disrupt proceedings. Weather aside, we had a really productive weekend and left with a renewed sense of direction and vision- Watch this space! We even went entirely vegetarian for the weekend- Does that earn us our Youth Commissioners’ Challenge Badge?!

Finally I rounded off the end of the month with a visit to our Development Camp at Bramhope. Storm Jorge didn’t dampen anyones enjoyment as they climbed the tower, go karted, crafted and plenty more! Grateful to Anna (ADC Development SLaM) for pulling the weekend together offering even more Young People the incredible experience of a night away; ably supported by a fab team of ADC’s, DTA’s, DCC’s and plenty of other acronyms!

On a personal note, I also received my Wood Badge and my Nights Away Permit this month- Neither possible without the support of the inspirational volunteers around me.

What a month! That’s not even mentioning the visits and meetings with Wetherby Whalers ESU, Cllr. Lisa Mulherin, CFL and our great Scout and Explorer Teams.

I have to finish with the biggest congratulations to Lois Priestley, a Scout from Shire Oak who has being elected as a Member of the Youth Parliament for Leeds. We’re all so proud of you Lois and can’t wait to see what you get up to in your new role!

Don’t forget, you can always contact us at We love being invited to things! You can also keep up to date on Twitter: @mathewmilner @sophieheadcyc @taylorscaifecyc



See you Later,



A New Month. A New Year. A New Decade!

January’s always an exciting time with lot’s of new things happening, and plenty of exciting things continuing. Here’s a few things the Youth Commissioners and County Youth Team have being up to!

My first meeting in the year was with our Challenge 20 Youth Board- How else do you start?! It was a great day and it’s brilliant to see a group of Young People continue to fundamentally shape our largest County Eve

The real focus point this month has being launching our brand NEW Youth Commissioners’ Challenge for 2020. It’s focussed all around the Climate Emergency and encouraging Young People and Adults to play their part in creating a better world. Take a look at the page on the website to find out how you can get involved


Ian, Taylor, Sophie, Lois and I spent a great morning at Drax Power Station filming our promotional video and we then had a brilliant evening at The Carriageworks Theatre launching our award.

We’re hugely grateful to everyone that came along and supported us, as well as Leeds City Council and Drax for their continued support. I’ve being really inspired working with Lois on this award, a Scout in Shire Oak who’s passion for Environmental Activism is infectious! We can’t wait to see what groups get up to and look forward to presenting some badges!

It’s also being a month of sectional meetings. We’ve got another incredible year of activities planned for our Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Explorers. Cinema Trips, Water Activity Days and Escape and Evade Events to name but a few! What’s truly special is that we have at least one Young Person (and often several) at these meetings to offer their vital input and influence.


I also had the pleasure of spending a weekend camping… Okay I use the word camping loosely, with St Chads Cubs at Blackhills. It was brilliant fun. Thanks to Carrie, who also happens to be our ACC Cubs for the invitation!






February looks to be just as exciting! We’ve got an evening with Explorers planning a brand new Crime Prevention Badge, The Child Friendly Leeds Awards and our Annual Weekend Away with the County Youth Team.

Don’t forget, you can always contact us at We love being invited to things! You can also keep up to date on Twitter: @mathewmilner @sophieheadcyc @taylorscaifecyc

See you Later,


Put your phone down and what are you left with? Just teamwork, courage and the skills to succeed.’
Bear Grylls, Chief Scout Bear Grylls