Our Scout Hall

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A little bit of our history…

Pannal Old School (as it is became known) was devised in the will of Captain John Bainbridge, and built in 1818. Amongst the names of the subscribers to the building of the School, were the Kings George III and IV, The Archbishops of York and Durham, the Earl of Harewood, Sir Thomas Slingsby of Scriven and Sir William Ingilby of Ripley.

You can see more about the history of the school and a ‘whos who’ of Pannal teachers here: https://freepages.rootsweb.com/~bentleygt/history/pannal/schools/pannal_school.html

After almost 150 years of use, the Old School building was outgrown in 1967 when the new County Primary School was built at Pannal Green.

Seizing a great opportunity, 1st Pannal Scout Group were given ‘first refusal’ and embarked on a fundraising bonanza in order to buy the building in 1969, having rented the space until then.

Some photos of our building in (many) years gone by….

Making History

We have been fortunate that in 2014 the then committee applied for section 106 funding – wind foward 8 years and it finally came through!

The Scout Leaders (who should never really be left alone for long) worked through the options of what could be done, given the restrictions on the funding that stated it was to extend and improve the facilities rather than just manage and maintain.

In early 2023 the plan put to the trustee board was to install a mezzanine room above the ‘small hall’, adding a staircase to the building in place of the precarious ‘hanging hut’ that the Explorers used as a store room. The toilet facilities were all to be refitted and expanded, adding in a disabled access loo as well. In addition, the replacement of the shed in the rear yard with a 3 bay ‘barn’ with additional meeting space upstairs was agreed.

Steve (Assistant Explorer Scout Leader Quartermaster) kindly offered to take lead and put in many, many hours of research, procurement activities and project management. The build started in July 2023 and the first session back in the main hall took place 9th February 2024.

The Victorian building did of course have a few surprises to throw in with ceilings that needed to be replaced, drainage challenges and 1980s windows that seemed to let in more water than they kept out at times! A box of documents dating from the 1960s gave us insight into the fundraising efforts undertaken by previous Leaders to enable us to own our building and of how the layout used to look when it was still a school – we’ll add these to a digital archive as soon as we can!

We have been very fortunate that the surprises the building provided could be managed due to some unexpected windfalls. In August 2023 we entered a photo competition with Two Ridings Community Foundation. We were delighted to receive notice that a delegation of Leaders needed to attend the prize giving at Allerton castle, even better, our photo won 1st place. Thanks to Pete Dickinson, Scout Leader for taking the photo on camp earlier in the year! The prize of £3,000 has allowed us to get the hall build completed, paying for the unexpected extra expense of the very special (and expensive!) ‘fire glass’ and frame that we needed to install in the mezzanine.

Some photos from the 2023/24 build are below.