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Olave Baden-Powell Society Tour – Days 4 and 5: In the footsteps of giants

23 Jun 17

It has been a busy few days on the OB-PS tour! Here is what’s happened.

Yesterday, Thursday 22nd June, we went on the hunt for two of Britain’s greatest writers. Firstly, we went to Hill Top, the home which Beatrix Potter purchased for herself in 1905, using the money from the sales of Peter Rabbit. Set in the idyllic village of Near Sawley, the house was a shrine to her life and work. For some of the OB-PS members, it was a chance to relive the stories which they, their children and grandchildren have read. For others, it was introduction to this major part of many British people’s childhoods. We also saw her kitchen garden, full of fruit and veg. A special treat was watching the conservationists who were working on Beatrix’s books, as well as cataloguing them all.

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There was then a brief stop where some of the group discovered another part of British life – ginger beer. The response was mixed!

We then set off to our next stop, Grasmere and Dove Cottage, the one-time home to William Wordsworth. Here we were shown around by Al, a very knowledgeable guide who showed us around the cottage. He certainly brought the items in the cottage to life, and helped us all of understand the life which William and his family lived there. The gardens at Dove Cottage were just as interesting, and you can see where the family got their literary inspiration from.

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The group then had free time in Grasmere. Most people (myself included) indulged in some of the local gingerbread – ginger seems to be a theme today! It was enjoyed by all. On our journey home, we had a surprise – Trevor, our driver, stopped at a wonderful viewpoint where we could see the whole of Lake Winderemere. Some of the group were arguing if they could send their photos to National Geographic!


Thursday was our last excursion day. This morning (Friday), we boarded the coach for the last time, and set off on the 6 hour journey to Gilwell Park and the OB-PS meeting. It was a smooth journey and we made good time. Now the group are enjoying a campfire in Gilwell Park – the perfect end to our busy week!


It has been a wonderful week of OB-PS friendship and discovery. I hope the group has enjoyed our adventures, which have certainly been memorable for us all! Hopefully their weekend at the meeting will be interesting and as fun as we have had.

In the words of that great Guiding song, ‘Go Well and Safely’.


Olave Baden-Powell Society – Day 3: Trains and Boats and…. Fish?

21 Jun 17

The morning started in that typical British way – yes, there was an English breakfast but also a thunder storm and a downpour of rain! Luckily many people weren’t up at that time, but it has certainly cooled everything down here in the Lake District. Still, we carried on undeterred and set off for the Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway, to start the Lakeside Spectacular.

This was our first stop for the day, and the steam train even gave us a blast on the way through.

Victor our train

Victor our train

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Olave Baden-Powell Society Tour – Day 2: England at its best!

20 Jun 17

Today dawned bright and sunny as the OB-PS members head off for the Lake District. First stop was of course Guiding related – Waddow Hall, one of the three Girlguiding Training Centres in the UK.

The World Flag flies over Waddow for our arrival.

The World Flag flies over Waddow for our arrival.

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Olave Baden-Powell Society

19 Jun 17

Hi everyone from sunny Manchester!

At the end of this week, members of the Olave Baden-Powell Society (OB-PS) are gathering in Gilwell for their Annual Meeting. Before then however, some of the members are doing a tour of the Lake District. I’m lucky enough to be joining them as a courier so I’m really excited!

Our hotel for tonight is the IBIS Styles in Manchester. The theme of the hotel is different weather, and many of the members have been lucky enough to be assigned the ‘sunny’ rooms. My room has a theme of rain (they must know I’m British) but it’s fine, as I only have to step outside for sunshine today!

Right now, some people are out on the open-top bus of Manchester. Tomorrow we’re heading off to the Lake District, with Waddow House, our first Guiding-related stop. Keep an eye on the blog to see what we are getting up to!

Here come the girls…

19 Jun 17


2017 has been a big year for women’s sport and it’s set to get even bigger.


This week the Women’s Cricket World Cup starts right here in the UK, the Women’s European Football Championships kick off in July and August sees the Women’s Rugby World Cup head to Ireland and the Netherlands host the Women’s Hockey Championship. We don’t know about you, but we’re pretty excited about a summer of women’s sport!

As well as the eagerly anticipated Women’s Cricket World Cup, today also marks the start of Women’s Sport Week, a campaign launched by Women in Sport, the leading charity dedicated to transforming sport for the benefit of every woman and girl in the UK. Tracey Crouch, Minister for Sport, said:

“We want more women and girls to get involved in sport and enjoy the huge benefits that being active brings to their lives. Women’s Sport Week is a fantastic campaign that encourages more women to try out a new sport or physical activity and celebrates the amazing achievements of our female athletes, coaches and volunteers.”

We couldn’t agree more. At Venture Abroad, we are proud to be advocates for encouraging more girls to take up sports and live a healthy and active lifestyle.

Statistics released by Sport England in March 2016 showed that just over 31% of women aged 16 and over participate in sport at least once a week. Almost a third of women in this country being involved in sport seems very encouraging, and it is, but it still lacks behind the percentage of men participating in sports once a week, which was reported to be just over 40%.

Why? Could it be due to the fact that women’s sport makes up just 7% of all sports media coverage in the UK? Perhaps, but whatever the reason, it’s fantastic to see campaigns such as Women’s Sport Week and This Girl Can making a difference and encouraging more and more women to get active (and reminding us what awesome warriors we are!).

How active are Venture Abroad/Rayburn Tours?

We thought we’d kick start this week by taking a poll in the office. With 61 women working for Venture Abroad and our parent company, Rayburn Tours, we wanted to see how many participate in sport or physical activity at least once a week – and the results were phenomenal!

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Trefoil Guild Annual Meeting 2017

14 Jun 17

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Following another fantastic Annual Meeting Weekend, we would like to thank all the Trefoil Guild members who joined us in Brighton and who made it so special. This event is always a privilege to be a part of and this year was no exception!

We hope you enjoy our little ditty of the event, summing up our experience of this wonderful weekend…


So ladies, a year has passed and the Trefoil A.M is here again,

And so comes the time to bring out my blogging pen.

How should I write it, to capture the memories we’ll share ?

A witty ditty secured the vote, of a weekend both special and rare!


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