FORTY years after being founded, the 10th Chippenham Scout Group has gone from strength to strength thanks to its original founders who still remain actively involved.

Brian and Barbara King formed the group in 1977 after the Chippenham 5th Salvation Army broke apart, where Mr King had previously been a leader for seven years.

He took inspiration from his twin sons, Peter and Leslie, who joined the Scouting movement when the family were living in Germany where Mr King was stationed with the RAF.

“I was told when I was given the warrant that you haven’t got a hope in hell of getting it off the ground,” said Mr King, 83, of Clift Avenue.

“It’s a case of just getting drawn in. We love children and the outdoors, you can’t bottle it up or explain it.”

At that time the group contained only 23 boys in the Scout group and 24 Cubs who met at the Bridge Centre.

In 1979, a new hut was constructed at the back of the Bridge Centre before it moved to its current location in Westmead Lane in 1988.

The group now has more than 100 children and young people across its Beaver, Cub and Scout packs and will be holding a number of events in 2017 to celebrate 40 years.

These include the designing of an anniversary badge, a group camp as well as an entertainment evening.

“Scouting is still very popular and one of the big things is children get to relax,” added Mr King.

“We are finding it a bit hard versus the computer but we’re very lucky with the team we have got.

“As a leader when you’re walking around the supermarket you get someone come up to you and say ‘hello Skip’ and it’s someone who used to be in the group.

“And that’s the brilliant part of it now, you’re getting children coming through and their parents used to be Scouts.”