SGSC Logo Chairman's Notes
July/August 2000
by John Ineson
IFSCO Logo  

As you will have read in the Editor's notes in the last bulletin, we had a most successful exhibition at Baden- Powell House, in London, with a very large attendance from overseas members.  The sub-committee met on ten occasions, and I would like to Peter Duck, Melvyn Gallagher, Mike Harrington and Bob Lee for their considerable help towards making our show such a success.  To the exhibitors, thank you for supporting our exhibition, especially those twelve members from overseas.  We decided for the first time to ask the visitors to vote for the best exhibit and we must offer our congratulations to Jan Cosyns from Belgium on winning the Bojanowicz cup for his superb collection of Scout Field Posts from the first world war.  Second was Lief Neilsen from Denmark for his display of Danish Scout & Guide postcards and third P.F.Tse from Hong Kong for his exhibit of World Scouting.

Due to the traffic in London, the frames arrived some two hours late at B.P.House on the Friday, and it was helpful to have over twenty members waiting to unload and carry the frames upstairs to the conference room.
Once it was found out how these were to be assembled, the collections were mounted quickly.  At the end of the show on Sunday, there was again considerable help to dismantle and load the van with the rain just holding off until the work was nearly completed.

One of the reasons for holding our exhibition in May was that it coincided with the International Exhibition being held at Earls Court the following week.  This show attracted many visitors to the U.K. and I am delighted to report that our member Hallvard Slettebø from Norway was awarded a Large Vermeil for his exhibit "World Scouting".

Unfortunately this will be the last time that we will be able to hold our exhibition in the Conference room at Baden-Powell House, as the Scout Association is selling its offices in London and moving it to Gilwell Park on the outskirts of the city.  However the Baden-Powell Hostel will continue to welcome members of the Scout Movement, and we will continue to hold our meetings at this venue.

EuroScout 2000

The committee have decided that we should join the International Scout Federation, which will be holding its inaugural meeting at Comacchio in Italy in September.  Peter Duck and myself will be the delegates from the SGSC.  Its aims will be to support Scout & Guide Philatelic Clubs/Societies at International level and to include improved co-operation between clubs, exchange of club magazines, suppress forgeries and giving opinions of doubtful stamp issues.  To publish information on thefts and deception and make known and register scout literature, lectures and videotapes or slide shows on Scout philatelic topics etc. We are grateful to Gottfried Steinmann one of our members from Germany for his work in setting up this Federation.

The club auction was a great success with total realisations of over £9000 from 49 bidders.  We are grateful to Bob Lee for organising and running this auction and the commission greatly supports the club finances.  He now sends a list of unsold lots to bidders and some of these lots are then sold at their original estimate.

My travels have recently have taken me back to Mafeking (now Mafikeng) for the centenary of the relief on May 17th.  Much has changed and many of the old buildings have fallen into disrepair or been pulled down.  For those interested in its history, B.P.'s old headquarters at Dixon's Hotel was pulled down in 1974.  The Market Boer War Relief Anniversary Square, which existed until the early 1990s has now become a large shopping centre.  The convent where the nurses did so much for the wounded during the siege has now become the offices of the North West Housing Corporation and the Revenue Office.  The Mafeking Club close to the centre of the town has been left in ruins and will be pulled down in the near future.  The Victoria Hospital and the Masonic Lodge buildings are now the only two original buildings in use during the siege.  The Town Hall built in 1902 is now the Museum and to celebrate the centenary, one of its rooms is dedicated to the siege and shows some magnificent exhibits.  However the sports pavilion where many of the Sunday activities were held during the day of no hostilities, is in ruins, but the new Mafeking Preservation Society is hoping to repair this in the near future.
A special postmark (one of a series issued for the centenary of the Boer War) was in use for the Mafeking Centenary of the Relief and shows Baden-Powell, but the artist did not have his facts correct as it portrays him in the wrong uniform and hat while on duty in Mafeking.

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