A visit from The Lord Mayor of Bradford

To celebrate Parliament Week, Burley-in-Wharfedale Rainbows, Brownies & Guides were very lucky to enjoy a visit from the Lord Mayor of Bradford.  The Lord Mayor brought his mascot, a small teddy bear named Brad.  He came on three separate nights so he could see all our 200 guiding members.

The Lord Mayor talked to everyone about his role & what it entailed, then young members were able to ask him lots of their own questions.  There were many questions as the girls were fascinated by his robes, hat & chain!   The girls heard that he was Lord Mayor for a year & about his charity, which is the Bradford Cinderella Club.


We are very grateful to the Lord Mayor giving up his time to meet us, we really enjoyed his visit.

Parliament UK is an annual series of events in the United Kingdom that aim to inspire interest in parliament, politics and democracy and encourage young people engage with the UK’s democratic system and institutions.   This year it runs from 6th to12th November

Girlguiding Wharfedale holds Thinking Day celebration in Ilkley

Around 190 Brownies and Rainbows along with about 45 leaders and helpers from Girlguiding Wharfedale (Addingham, Ilkley, Burley and Menston) celebrated Thinking Day in the King’s Hall, Ilkley recently. World Thinking Day is an annual event held by the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts across 150 countries. This event seeks to spread empowerment, friendship, and sisterhood among girls and to raise awareness on issues affecting girls and women from all walks of life. Each year, World Thinking Day has a different theme.

The theme for the day in Ilkley was taken from the 2023 World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) World Thinking Day activity pack with the theme “Our World, Our Peaceful Future”.Ann Peacock, PR advisor for Girlguiding Wharfedale said: “There were 15 activity stations for the girls to visit and create a craft or do a quiz. The theme was loosely based on nature to link with the environment and peace.

“All girls made pompoms in their meetings from crepe paper. Cheerleaders from Inspirations Dance based in Baildon and Otley choreographed amazing movements for the girls to take part in cheerleading prior to renewing the Promise which is always a big part of Thinking Day.

“Amongst other things, girls made ‘bug houses’ in old mugs, Lego trefoils and Herman worm and bead man. A lady from Ukraine demonstrated traditional flower painting and showed the girls how to make traditional wool dolls.

“Quote of the day came from Division Commissioner Sue Vint who said: ‘I think it was a brilliant afternoon. The girls and leaders alike were very enthusiastic and engrossed in all the activities. Lots of girls I asked said they were having a fun time. I felt there was a great guiding spirit’.”

Brownies take to the airwaves ahead of Thinking Day

On Sunday, February 19 brownies from Woodhead District invited members from Girl Guiding Wharfedale to join them for a special event in Burley-in-Wharfedale when Otley Amateur Radio Society set up equipment to allow them to make contact with listeners world-wide – including a scout unit in the Netherlands.In addition, they learned Morse Code and international call signals as well as having the opportunity to play with the old-time favourites, tin can ‘telephones’

This event was in anticipation of February 22 when members of Girl Guiding celebrate what is known as ‘Thinking Day’ and to Scouts as ‘Founders’ Day’. It was the joint birthday of Robert Baden Powell, founder of Scouts and his wife, Olave Baden Powell, the first Chief Guide. The occasion makes use of the opportunity to think of members world wide and acknowledge the value of what Guiding and Scouting provides for young people in all walks of life.

Summer update – what’s new and happening

As COVID restrictions have eased, many of the Burley-in-Wharfedale Scout and Guide groups have already returned to face to face activities. Throughout the last few months all leaders have been planning safe and enjoyable programmes, operating within the parameters of national guidelines. The young people involved have been loving the opportunities to take part in activities, seeing other members of their groups, and having fun.

Guiding units are continuing to meet face to face: some inside, some outside. Where possible, units are also using other venues around the village to prevent clashes with units who want to use rooms at the HQ at the same time.  Groups have used Wynches Activity Centre, Sun Lane Nature Reserve, Burley Park & the Recreation ground.

The Guiding units have been engaged in a variety of activities such as litter picking in Burley, geo-caching and run a village treasure hunt. Meanwhile the Rangers have resumed Duke of Edinburgh’s Award activities with expeditions for Bronze & Silver level.
Looking ahead, assuming restrictions are not tightened, 1st Guides are going on summer camp to Waddow at the end of July for 5 days, with over half the guides planning on attending.

In other news, Guide leader Cara Woods gained her Queens Guide Award in Feb 2020. The Queen’s Guide award is the highest award you can work towards in guiding. Although originally awarded to Guides, it is now only attainable by members of the Senior Section (including Rangers, Young Leaders and Leaders) aged between 16- 25. It is a challenging programme comparable to the Queen’s Scout and higher than Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. Since the awards creation 60 years ago 20,000 young women have gained the award. Unfortunately due to Covid she has not been presented with it, so there will be a presentation in the grounds of our HQ for a small number of invited guests. Congratulations & well done Cara!

Guiding activities

The Scouting groups have been similarly active. Most recently the Beavers been to Wynches Activity Centre in Burley for some outdoor fun, and the Scouts have been out at Reva Scouts Water Activity Centre near Bingley. Meanwhile the Explorers have got an overnight camp planned (in hammocks!) at Sconce. They are also planning on undertaking Duke of Edinburgh Silver Award activities in October.

The Bookmark Project 2021

The 5th annual Bookmark Project run by 1st Burley Brownies starts on Monday evening May 10th at 7pm.
We are a charity auction that auctions unique bookmarks created by authors, illustrators, actors and other celebrities.We have almost 400 bookmarks created by authors, illustrators, actors and other celebrities including Sir Quentin Blake, Dame Helen Mirren, Brian May, Axel Scheffler, Jo Brand and Cressida Cowell. We are hoping to raise as much money as possible to buy textbooks for the Grade 7 learners (costing £2100), large water storage tanks and also to be able to build two nursery classrooms.
Our auction takes place in May each year and all the money raised goes to support projects at Katiyo Primary School in Zimbabwe.

Unless stated otherwise all of our bookmarks are to the best of our knowledge unique creations created specifically for our project. They are created using a wide range of mediums some are sketched, others painted, some are collages and a number of our artists work digitally meaning your bookmark is printed but it will have been created specially for our project & yours is the only one there will ever be.

Please check out our auction here: www.jumblebee.co.uk/bookmarkproject2021 and bid on your favourites.If you would like to sponsor a textbook (they cost £7 each) please get in touch with Sharon at 1stburleybrownies@gmail.com


Nothing Stops a Brownie Guide

Lockdown at the start of March brought to a halt many of the out of school activities that our children enjoy and look forward to each week. Girl Guides though and their leaders are not ones to give up easily though. The many Girlguiding units in the village have still been busy this year – some sending out activity packs for the girls to work on at home, some took their meetings online and met on zoom and others have recently started enjoying socially distanced outdoor meetings.

The girls too rose to the challenge of adapting to meeting differently. We would like to share with you what a few of our groups have been up to …

1st Burley Brownies have met every week since the start of lockdown (with just one week off!) We meet using Zoom and are joined by anything up to 20 girls each week to work on the Girlguiding program together, earn badges, welcome visitors and have fun.

Some of the many things we have enjoyed include a puppet workshop, making microwave mug cakes, creating poppy stones for Remembrance, lots of scavenger hunts, games, quizzes and an escape room. We’ve been joined by author Will Mabbitt, illustrator Alison Brown, guests from the RNLI & the Blue Cross and Jill from Canada who taught us all about sharks.

The girls have worked on badges at home earning badges in baking, performing, mindfulness, gardening, collecting, charities and space. They’ve made zip wires for their teddies, built obstacle courses and gone wild in June for 30 Days Wild with the Wildlife Trust. They’ve earned a number of Bronze, Silver and Gold awards which are the highest awards you can earn as a Brownie.

Pack Holiday is the highlight of the Brownie year and this year we went virtual, helping to break a world record for the largest camp at home, enjoying our own virtual campfire and meeting and adopting some alpacas from Scotland.

1st Burley Guides have 29 out of 30 Guides signed up for zoom meetings and nearly a full house turning up every week. They have enjoyed scavenger hunts and quizzes and enjoyed Taskmaster challenges. Their microwave mug cakes were delicious. They earned their whittling badge carving peppers and making whistles out of carrots. The girls took part in a debate for parliament week and made pinwheel poppies for remembrance whilst working on their remembrance UMA (unit meeting activity.) The birds in their gardens are well fed thanks to the fab citrus feeders the girls made.

They enjoyed camping at home and also helped to break a world record. They are looking forward to Christmas activities and a virtual pantomime with the other girlguiding units.

2nd Burley Brownies are also busy meeting online, the girls are currently working on their skills for my future theme award. They have been busy learning how to use hand tools, making lifts, robots and air canons. They have joined with Microsoft to make their own computer games, worked on their space badge with The Royal Astronomical Society and practiced strategies for improving their mental well being with a Girlguiding Peer Educator. The girls have camped in their gardens and also enjoyed helping to break a world record. They have been busy baking. The girls have been involved in various community ‘cheer up’ activities including the rainbow window trail, the Burley Halloween trail and the Girlguiding display for remembrance in the Wharfedale deli. They are acting their age to raise money for Children in Need, writing cards to residents of local care homes and planting seeds. But most importantly they have plenty of giggles, silliness and fun!

We hope it won’t be long until we are able to resume face to face indoor meetings but until then you can be sure we will be carrying on Guiding!

Burley Guiding joins #PlasticPromise

As part of ‘Future Girl Acts’ week which ran from from September 30 to October 6 Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and Rangers from Burley-in-Wharfedale took part in activities in their meetings to learn about plastic pollution and to encourage others to be more aware of the negative impact of single-use plastic.

The girls have made a #PlasticPromise to reduce single-use plastic. It is the UK’s biggest ever girl-led campaign to tackle plastic pollution. They were encouraged to think about ways in which they can reduce their usage of single-use plastic and encourage others to do the same.

As well as making a #PlasticPromise, the girls took part in a plastic-themed activity during their weekly Girlguiding meeting. They used their creativity to show why protecting the planet matters, taking plastic waste and turning it into sculptures of animals they want to protect from plastic pollution.

Over a number of weeks, the girls collected over 500 pieces of recyclable plastic in order to make the sculptures. The girls created, dolphins, sea turtles, octopuses and jellyfish. The girls also took the time to create a speech-bubble for their sculpture which contained a message about the species they focused on.

The Brownies also had a visit from Charlotte Hawkins, owner of the ‘Waste Not Shop’ in Burley-in-Wharfedale. She spoke to the girls about alternatives to using plastic and brought them all a bamboo straw.

The #PlasticPromise campaign and week of action builds on the launch of Girlguiding’s Future Girl manifesto. 76,000 girls and young women shaped Future Girl by sharing the issues that matter most to them. Taking action to protect the planet is one of their top five issues, with plastic pollution named as one of the biggest threats to their future.

Read the full article here