Scouts honoured by borough mayor

Andover Advertiser: Hayley Bench receives the DoE Gold Award and Queen's Scout Award from the mayor. Buy this photo Hayley Bench receives the DoE Gold Award and Queen's Scout Award from the mayor.

SCORES of Scouts were honoured by the borough mayor at a special reception – and there was one particularly significant award.

The Mayor’s reception for Chief Scout Award (CSA) holders from Basingstoke West Scout District saw Scouts and Cubs receive awards and badges for all their hard work.

Borough Mayor Councillor Dan Putty praised those who were honoured, saying: “These young people are the future. It is wonderful to see them doing so much good work in the community. They have done a multitude of things to get these awards, and they are thoroughly deserved.

“It was a real honour to be able to present them with the awards and to be able to congratulate them. It was a wonderful event.”

In total, 10 cubs received their Silver CSA, 19 scouts received their Gold CSA, and two Explorer Scouts were awarded their Platinum CSA awards.

Among those being honoured was Hayley Bench, who alongside her Gold Award, also picked up the highest accolade in the Scouting world – the Queen’s Scout Award. Only around 500 people nationwide achieve the award each year.

Hayley was presented with the award by her father, Peter Bench, currently District Commissioner of Basingstoke West Scout District.

Hayley, 24, of Brighton Hill, Basingstoke, said: “It’s taken me a total of five years, with a couple of years break in the middle, to earn the award, and it is quite challenging.

“It involves an international aspect and residential courses, but it does feel good to have completed it.”

Hayley, who works at Sparsholt College, in Winchester, said: “It was nice to be presented with the award by my dad. He got quite emotional – I know he’s proud of me.”

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