Scouting for Empire
Seventy-five years ago the Scout movement started in Britain, explains Victor Bailey, an authentic expression of the Edwardian age of Empire.
'There suddenly appeared in my world – I saw them first, I think, in 1908 – a new sort of little boy, a most agreeable development of the slouching, cunning, cigarette-smoking, town-bred youngster, a small boy in a khaki hat, and with bare knees and athletic bearing, earnestly engaged in wholesome and invigorating games up to and occasionally a little beyond his strength – the Boy Scout. I liked the Boy Scout, and I find it difficult to express how much it mattered to me, with my growing bias m favour of deliberate national training, that Liberalism hadn't been able to produce, and had indeed never attempted to produce anything of this kind.' H.G. Wells, The New Machiavelli (1911)