Honestly, the original Gilwell Park in London looks no different from any other field. Sure, the grass is green, the trees towering and the air clean. But put a normal civilian here, and they won’t see anything special.
Wood Badgers, though, aren’t normal civilians. They know Gilwell is no ordinary park. Even though most haven’t visited this particular spot in England, they’ve been back to Gilwell time and again.
The U.K. Scout Association’s Gilwell Park is where the first Wood Badge course was held in September 1919, and every course since has created its own Gilwell as a gathering place for adult leaders getting trained.
Last week my dad, a former Wood Badge course director, and I, a former Wood Badge troop guide, visited Gilwell Park as part of a weeklong personal vacation to England. (Personal meaning I paid for it, not BSA.)
Yesterday I told you about my visit with an editor who works for the U.K. version of Scouting magazine. Today, join me as I visit the original Gilwell Park and see Baden-Powell’s Wood Badge beads (which I’m holding above) and kudu horn. The best part is you don’t have to be a magazine editor or blogger to see these pieces of Scouting history.
Photos and lots more after the jump.