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Official Opening of The Lineker Pavilion

posted 11 May 2015, 04:30 by Stu Bennett

A new campsite building has been officially opened thanks to Cramlington based pharmaceutical manufacturer MSD who have kindly donated a grant of $50,000 to Blyth Valley Scout District.

The money donated by MSD has funded a new pavilion at Selby Wood Scout Campsite in Stanton just outside of Morpeth. The emergency shelter building is a wooden structure that has been built to allow younger members of the Scouting movement to camp over and have indoor accommodation in the event of adverse weather conditions. The venue will also be used for training courses, meetings, plus larger camps and events.

The building has been named The Lineker Pavilion, in memory of Phil Lineker who has a long supporter of Scouting in Blyth Valley and in his role of District Chairman was instrumental in securing the grant. The pavilion has been specifically designed for Scout groups and young people with full toilet facilities, food preparation area, lighting, first aid room and a large spacious hall perfect for dining, activities and games.

Selby Wood Scout Campsite opened in the summer of 2004 providing traditional ‘back to basics’ camping to allow young people to get outdoors, learn new skills, traditional camping techniques and take part in adventure. The campsite is owned and managed by Blyth Valley Scout District and has been developed with the kind permission of land owners Shirley and Bob Potts. The site has benefited hundreds of young people from South East Northumberland and further afield by both Scout Groups along with schools and youth organisations completing the Duke of Edinburgh’s award.

The building was officially opened on Saturday by Sir Professor Alan Craft, Chairman of The Scout Association and President of Northumberland Scouts who used Phil’s Scout knife to cut the ribbon. Also in attendance was the Mayor of Blyth Olga Potts along with Phil’s wife, daughter and sister to mark the occasion.

This is the next stage in support that Blyth Valley Scout District has received from MSD, after the company had previously donated £3600 along with allowing MSD volunteers from the plant at Cramlington to spend 450 man hours to help upgrade and work on the project in 2013. The employee volunteers spent days at the campsite completing a range of maintenance tasks such as painting, building a new fence across the campsite, refitting of toilet facilities, clearing out drinking troughs, erecting fencing and much more.

Neal Armiger, District Commissioner for Blyth Valley Scouts said “It’s fantastic that such a big company is able to support us in providing adventure and challenge to young people. The Linker pavilion will be a fantastic asset for the campsite and won’t just benefit our members today but also the hundreds of young people who will use it in the future’.

Martin Inskip, Senior Director of Operations at MSD Cramlington added: “We are delighted that MSD was able to obtain this grant for the Blyth Valley Scouts and our volunteers have not only worked hard during their time at Selby Woods, they have gained valuable skills partnering with the Scout leaders to improve the Selby campsite for young people from the North East of England.  It is MSD’s philosophy to give back to the community in which we operate and I believe the MSD Cramlington site lives that philosophy.  I spent one day at the site and it was very good to see the progress made by the staff.  The work groups and the money provided by MSD have made a significant difference in furnishing a facility that will provide benefit to the Scouts and our local community long into the future.”

Sir Professor Alan Craft who opened the building added “The essence of Scouting is development by adventure. Getting places for young people to meet outside of their local environment is a constant challenge. This is a wonderful example of Scouts working in partnership with a local farmer and a multinational company with a factory in Cramlington. The farmer has loaned the land and MSD through their US based charitable Trust gave a grant of $50K. All was driven through by Phil Lineker a local scout leader who unfortunately died before the new Pavillion could be opened. It will provide a focus for Scouting and wonderful opportunities for young people some of whom have never been in the countryside.”