Businesses from across the region gathered to support the construction of a new headquarters for a local community group.
More than 70 people packed into Warwick Hall for the inaugural 2nd Warwick Sea Scouts business breakfast to support the group’s ‘Building a Future’ initiative.
The group needs to raise £650,000 for the construction of a new HQ, as the 50-year-old current hut is in a bad state of repair and too small for the size of group.
A new HQ will also allow the group to grow, supporting more young people and become a valuable resource for the local community. The group has already worked hard to raise £170k and their next phase is to raise a further £200k in 2018.
The morning event, which was supported by Deeley Group and Warwick School, saw business people, civic leaders and politicians attend to hear about the group’s plan for the new headquarters.
Martin Stockbridge, 2nd Warwick Sea Scouts Group Scout Leader, was the first in a packed line-up of speakers – introducing attendees to the Sea Scouts and its fundraising goals.
Highlights of the morning were the talks from current scouts Bethany Ellis and Tom Bosworth, who spoke about the opportunities that Sea Scouting has given them.
The 2nd Warwick Sea Scouts welcomed back two past members too, who shared their memories and explained how being a member had impacted on their later life.
Simon Talling-Smith, CEO of private travel company, Surf Air in Europe and Alan Haywood, CEO of BP Integrated Supply and Trading, were Sea Scouts in the early 1980s and have remained friends for more than 35 years.
Simon Talling-Smith said: “The experience of those years with the Sea Scouts, the resilience and belief it helped us develop were hugely formative.
“I don’t think I would be in the position that I am now if it wasn’t for those years with 2nd Warwick.”
Alan Haywood added: “Being a scout was a defining characteristic in who I was growing up. The group gave me great opportunities. Community is something that is vital for young people and 2nd Warwick gives you that.”
Former Captain of RMS Queen Mary 2, Commodore Bernard Warner, was the final speaker at the breakfast and told stories of his 45 year career at sea.
He highlighted his final voyage in 2011, when at port in Japan he received news of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster and was tasked with getting his passengers aboard the Queen Mary 2 home safely.
Peter Deeley, Managing Director of the Deeley Group, who sponsored the business breakfast, said: “It was a fascinating and informative morning, it is clear that the Sea Scouts group have a hugely positive impact on the lives of young people.
“Hearing from former and current Sea Scouts about their experiences further showed the benefits of a community group like this and why it is vital that people support their new fundraising initiative.”
“The new headquarters would be a valuable resource not only for the group but for the rest of Warwick and we wish them the best of luck in raising the money needed to complete the project.”