Conwy Scouts enjoy outdoor activities after railway funding

Conwy’s thrill-seeking young Scouts have received a post-pandemic boost after long periods of self-isolation and lockdown.

Conwy District Scouts have run a series of adventurous activities for over 170 children with highly trained instructors at sites across North Wales.

The troupe – which has groups in Llandudno, Betws-y-Coed, Abergele, Old Colwyn, Colwyn Heights, Rhos-on-Sea, Llanfairfechan and Conwy – have benefited from free adventure sessions with lead instructor Ray Barnett.

Supported by funding from Conwy Valley and the North West Wales Coast Community Rail Partnership and Transport for Wales (TfW), group representatives from Llandudno, Betws-y-Coed, Abergele, Old Colwyn, Colwyn Heights, Rhos-on-Sea , Llanfairfechan and Conwy participated in the free program.

Archery, canoeing, kayaking, mining, mountain walking and dry skiing sessions were enjoyed by the boys and girls of Squirrels, Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Explorer Scouts, ages four to 18.

Ray Barnett, the programme’s lead instructor, thanked the Community Rail Partnership for helping to rebuild young people’s confidence in the wake of Covid-19.

“During the pandemic, we were unable to organize all the activities that we usually organize throughout the year, which was difficult for all of us, especially the children and their parents,” said said Ray.

“Covid-19 has had such a big impact on their confidence and the social lives of these young people, it was vital that we got them out, learning and having fun with their friends as soon as we could, and that we could do that. gesture of support for parents and our young people given the economic difficulties of recent years.

“With the much needed support from Conwy Valley and the North West Wales Coast Community Rail Partnership and TfW, we were able to do this successfully; our biggest challenge now is to find more volunteers to help us, as the waiting list to join the scouts in the Conwy district continues to grow.

“And it’s a 50/50 split between boys and girls, which is fantastic to see and shows there’s a real appetite among young people to be social and make new friends.

“We are just thrilled to continue delivering these sessions and to have been able to thank all the groups for their loyalty and allowing us to work in partnership to rebuild their mental and physical health and well-being after such a difficult time.”

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Karen Williams, Head of Community Rail, added: “We are delighted to have been able to play a part in bringing these activities back and to hear of the positive impact they have had on so many in the community.

“We encourage other organizations in the North West Wales region to contact us if they would like to find out more about how we can help them.”

Funding is available to community organizations located within five miles of a Transport for Wales (TfW) station along the Conwy Valley and North West Wales coast lines (Llandudno to Blaenau Ffestiniog and Llandudno Junction at Holyhead).

A new round of funding begins this week and will run until mid-October, with up to £1,000 available.

There is also a Greener Initiative funding scheme where groups within a one mile radius of a TfW station in the above areas can apply for up to £500.

For more information visit www.mantellgwynedd.com or call 01286 672626. You can also follow them on social media at @mantellgwynedd.