The happiness and the 'horror': Guides: Several notable former Guides tell Rachel Borrill about their memories of knot-tying and campfires
Wednesday 01 July 1992
'I can still remember my first Scout dance, we had lots of fun. These were some of my happiest memories. My family were great Scouts and Guides supporters. My mother used to hold sales to raise funds for them. I think they are very important organisations because they have a good influence on children.'
Jilly Cooper, the novelist, was not so happy. 'I was chucked out of the Brownies because of my insubordination. My cousin was Brown Owl and I joined because of her. I thought it was a total horror. I just couldn't believe they were so wet, all those Pixies and Elves. And it was all so terribly hearty which is absolutely not me.
'The uniform was also disgusting. I think I got kicked out because of my general sluttishness and my complete lack of interest. I hate rules at the best of times, and they had enough of them.'
Sara Parkin, spokeswoman for the Green Party, opted out for a different reason: 'I joined the Brownies when I was about eight, but I wasn't terribly impressed. I was a tomboy and had been led to believe that we would be climbing trees, making dens and tying knots. But all we did was dance. I left when the meetings began to clash with The Goon Show.'
Lindi St Clair, the former brothel-keeper turned political campaigner, said: 'I loved the Guides, that was where I learnt to tie knots. I enjoyed going camping - we always used to sit around the campfire singing songs. It was wonderful just being there with my mates. And I really liked the uniform. I had loads of badges, which I got for my sewing and tying knots. The Guides were good because they encouraged us to be independent. That has helped me.'
- 2 Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
- 3 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
- 4 Cee Lo Green: It is only rape if the victim is conscious
Perez Hilton apologises for publishing Jennifer Lawrence naked 4Chan photos
Emma Watson on Jennifer Lawrence naked photo leak: 'Even worse than seeing women's privacy violated is reading the comments'
Ariana Grande nude photos leak: Pictures are completely fake, say representatives
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
Katie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge: ‘I hate fat people for making me do this’
Rotherham child sex abuse scandal: Labour Home Office to be probed over what Tony Blair's government knew - and when
What do immigrants really think of Britain? Polish immigrant's Reddit post goes viral
Ashya King: Parents of five-year-old boy refused permission to visit him in hospital and denied bail at Spanish court
With Douglas Carswell joining Ukip, my party has taken another giant step forward
When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
Ashya King: 'Cruel NHS has not given us the treatment we need', says father of five-year-old with brain tumour who fled to Spain
£30000 - £45000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: Front-Of...
£700 per day: Harrington Starr: Quantitative Developer C++, Python, STL, R, PD...
£700 per day: Harrington Starr: Java/Calypso Developer Java, Calypso, J2EE, J...
£500 per day: Harrington Starr: SQL Developer SQL, C#, Stored Procedures, MDX...