Blog Archives

Explorer Scout Camp Diary: Day Seven – 10 August 2012

For me, it’s the last day of the camp, and I’m excited about going home and repacking for the Berkshire Scouts Aragon expedition. But I also develop a sense of poignancy about leaving the place I’d had so much fun. (This is the seventh and final instalment: you can read about Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday by following the links.)

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Explorer Scout Camp Diary: Day Six – 9 August 2012

As I wake for my penultimate morning on the camp, I’m excited about the assault course activity planned. But after an accident at the end of the session, the rest of the day is forced to take a very different shape to the one on the schedule, as I’m rushed to A&E. Luckily, once discharged, I’m able to join the rest of the unit in a sunny Ilfracombe. (This is the sixth instalment: you can read about Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday by following the links.)

So this is it. I’ve probably built this up far too much, and if you’ve been eagerly awaiting a true tale of catastrophe, I sincerely apologise in advance: I’m afraid you will only be disappointed. What happened to my knee is nothing on what happened to my friend Joe’s finger – it came off, gruesomely. It’s certainly nothing when compared to the horror that the subjects of Our War (the extraordinary documentary series about the bloody Afghan conflict) go through. But for me, at the time, it was pretty nasty.

Be warned that this post does contain photographs of my wound.


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Olympic Torch Relay: Today in Maidenhead – 10 July 2012

Read on for details of when the Olympic Torch will pass through Maidenhead, and of what else can be expected from Day 53 of the relay.

Last night saw me taking part in a performance of The Tree of Light in Oxford’s South Park, the overnight resting point of the Olympic Torch Relay. 850 people took part in the performance, staged in front of an extremely impressive ‘tree’ built around scaffolding. There’ll be a full post from that in the next few days, once I’ve edited together the best bits of my behind-the-scenes video (you won’t find a more comprehensive video from backstage in Oxford anywhere else in the world) alongside photography of the torch and a text write-up of the amazing day.

WHAT AN HONOUR: Backstage yesterday, Torchbearer Number 112 let me hold her prestigious torch. (IMG_8650)SHEER DELIGHT: I was delighted to get to hold a real Olympic torch, used earlier yesterday. (IMG_8651)

Today (Tuesday), on Day 53 of the relay, the torch will travel 87.05 miles and pass through fifteen communities – one of them being my hometown of Maidenhead. Leaving Oxford at 7:05am, it will visit Abingdon, Wallingford, Crowmarsh Gifford, Nettlebed, Henley-on-Thames, and Bisham Abbey, before arriving at Furze Platt Road (the A308) at 10:48am.

Pupils from nearby Courthouse Junior School are expected to be walked through Cranbrook Drive to watch, while Furze Platt Senior School pupils will see the torch pass right by their school’s gates during a special Olympic-themed day of sport and activities. Arrangements for many other schoolchildren from the town and the borough have been made, with some Windsor schools reportedly offering their pupils the afternoon off.

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