Celebrity plea to help fix vandal-hit Gang Warily Scout and Guide HQ
SCOUTS fed up with vandals targeting their headquarters have launched a campaign to persuade celebrities to throw their support behind a fundraiser to help rebuild it.
The Gang Warily Scout and Guide HQ in Newlands Road, Fawley, has been repeatedly targeted by vandals, as reported in the A&T.
To raise awareness of their plight the group has now taken to Twitter to ask celebrities to help with its fundraising webpage which seeks to collect £10,000 as part of a wider effort to fix the base.
Among those contacted include TV’s Chris Packham, Dan Snow, Charlie Dimmock and Bear Grylls as well as former footballer Matt Le Tissier and singer Craig David.
Scouts chair Lisa Hayes said: “We have CCTV and an alarm system, but that has not deterred the vandals.
“They have climbed up on our roof, pulled off our guttering, pulled off our cameras, smashed our windows, smashed holes in the walls of our temporary building, ransacked our storeroom, stolen stuff from us, lifted manhole covers and vandalised them, plus caused a lot of other damage and mess.
“We do not want to lose our HQ – we have been running our groups locally for about 50 years now and would like to continue for many more years to come.”
The base is made up of three temporary buildings donated by ExxonMobil over 30 years ago which, prior to the Covid pandemic, were used by around 140 local children each week. Groups using the HQ included Rainbows, Beavers, Brownies, Guides and Scouts.
The groups have already raised over £40,000 towards a new structure, but the pandemic means they have been unable to hold any more events, which have previously included car boot sales, arts and crafts sales and a race night. They are also trying to buy the leased land and install a new security fence.
Lisa added: “We are in an area of deprivation and we do whatever we can to support our local community. Last Christmas we opened our HQ and helped run the Waterside Christmas Appeal where we helped to provide gifts for over 300 children in our local community.
“However, we need help in raising the funds as our HQ is not going to last much longer, especially if it keeps getting vandalised.”
She added: “Every donation will count no matter how large or small it is. If you cannot help with a cash donation, then maybe you could help us in another way – please get in touch.”
By Tuesday, £160 has been raised. To donate visit www.gofundme.com/f/new-scout-guide-community-hall