Scout bosses: All leaders are trained

AS questions were raised about the safety standards of local scouts, cubs and beavers following the tragic death of Alan Lock, the national association last night said all group leaders were given “comprehensive support and training”.

Dave Gooderham

AS questions were raised about the safety standards of local scouts, cubs and beavers following the tragic death of Alan Lock, the national association last night said all group leaders were given “comprehensive support and training”.

Six-year-old Alan Lock was pulled from the river after he somehow got in trouble while on a trip organised by the 1st Acton and Waldingfield Scout Group.

One distraught family member admitted she was “struggling to come to terms” with how the tragedy could have taken place.


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A spokesman for the Scout Association revealed an internal investigation had been launched but yesterday moved to dispel fears that the children were not properly supervised.

In a statement, they said: “We are aware of the sad death of a six-year-old male beaver scout that took place on Tuesday evening. “The young person was taking part in an organised trip along the river bank in Sudbury. It was an activity the scout group had undertaken on several previous occasions.

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“We are working with the authorities to establish the details of what happened and The Scout Association will be launching an internal investigation. Our thoughts and prayers are with the parents and family of the young person at this time.”

The association said the normal ratio for such trips would be one adult for every six children.

The spokesman added: “All scouting activities are risk accessed and safety is always our first priority. We provide our leaders with comprehensive support and training relevant to the role and activities that are being undertaken.

“The recommended minimum ratio for both outdoor activities held away from the usual meeting place and sleepovers are one adult to six beaver scouts plus the leader in charge.”

Jenny Antill , a Babergh district councillor in the village, said: “I am sure everyone in Acton is extremely sad and shocked by this awful accident. It is a close village and everyone in it will share the grief of the family concerned.

“There has to be a balance between safety and adventure. I hope parents will not stop sending their children to the various scout groups as the movement as a whole is tremendous.”

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