1st East Grinstead Scout Group
Centenary 1908 - 2008

1st Air Scouts

Probably the most unlikely event to arise from research has been the fact that members of the troop between 1910 and 1914 built a number of gliders which they flew. When I first came upon this story I could not believe that the gliders were large enough to carry a scout as a passenger, which is borne out by photographic evidence.

A number of press reports have appeared over the years detailing these events and producing copies of various photographs. The first press report appeared in the East Grinstead Observer on 24th August 1912. It shows a poor image of the glider in flight with a scout hanging from beneath the wing, together with a short report recording the flight and that members of the troop had recorded the fact on camera. I can say that apart from portraits accompanying Obituary Notices, this was the first occasion that I have found of an actual ‘news photograph’ appearing in the local papers, and some years elapsed certainly until the 1920’s until this fact was repeated.