After Baden-Powell’s book “Scouting for Boys” appeared in 1908, Scout Groups started spontaneously throughout Great Britain and Ireland.
Some Groups, including 1st Dublin Troop, Boy Scouts (founded 15th February 1908 by Capt.Richard P. Fourtune RNR) included boating in their programmes from the beginning, and B-P soon recognised that this was an excellent variation of the Scout programme.
Sea Scouting was officially recognised in 1910, and B-P wrote the first introductory pamphlet “Sea Scouting for Boys”. Later B-P asked his brother Warrington, a well known yachtsman, to write a handbook for the new section, and “Sea Scouting and Seamanship for Boys” was published in 1912.
The first Sea Scout Troops in Ireland were registered in 1912, in Bray and in Ringsend (1st Dublin Troop mentioned above), where B-P then appointed Lieut. Henry J.Rundle RN, Officer-Charge, HM Coastguard Malahide, as the 1st Commissioner for Sea Scouting.
Other Troops developed in Dublin in the succeeding years, in most cases alongside HM Coastguard Stations. In 1914 the first inter-Troop rowing race for the Wood-Latimer Cup was held. This event was the start of the Annual Sea Scout Regatta and continues to this day, making it one of the oldest Scouting events in the World.
With the outbreak of World War One, many Sea Scouts and their leaders joined the Royal Navy, often as Signallers or Coast Watch.
In 1915, the Dublin Sea Scout Troops were grouped together in the Port of Dublin Sea Scout Local Association, and they were allocated “Port of Dublin” numbers, a custom that still continues. The annual Seamanship Competition for the Fry Cup started in 1918 with the presentation of a handsome silver cup from Major-General Sir William Fry to the Port of Dublin Sea Scouts. The event continues to the present day and is regarded as Sea Scoutings most prestigious cup to claim.
29 Dublin Sea Scouts attended the 1st World Scout Jamboree in London and were accommodated onboard the HMS Sharpshooter.
With the foundation of the Irish Free State in 1922, saw the exist of HM Coastguard from Ireland.
This had a huge negative impact to many of the adjoining Sea Scout Troops.
In addition, with the growing sense of Irish Nationalism, Scouting was seen as a very British organisation. To that end, the Catholic Boy Scouts of Ireland were founded in 1927, and started a Sea Scouting programme a year later, basing the organisation of the Boy Scouts of America model.
This was a Senior Section, over 14 years of age who formed themselves into ‘Ships’ or Units. By the late 1930s CBSI had about 10 Ships (Units) in the Dublin area, and Ships in Cork, Galway, Waterford and Wexford, a total of 14.
These Ship were also given ‘Port Numbers’ alongside their UK Boy Scout Association counterparts.
World War Two broke out and by its conclusion all CBSI Sea Scouting Units have closed and only 1st Port of Dublin (Ringsend) and 4th Port of Dublin (Dodder) remain.
1948, the Boy Scouts of Ireland is established and becomes independant of the previous British Association.
This will later be renamed as the Scout Association of Ireland.
A period of growth starts within Sea Scouting in Ireland; x2 troops in 1948, to x4 in 1958, x12 in 1968, x38 in 1978.
The first of these Troops outside Dublin was 1st Wexford (New Ross) in 1965.
The very rapid growth between 1968 and 1978 was a mixed blessing, and a number of troops did not survive for very long, mainly due to problems of back-up support and of maintaining adequate supply of Leaders.
In the mid 1970s the former lightship, “Albatross”, was acquired as a Sea Training Centre.
This was a great boost to training and was an activity centre where troops with little equipment could send Scouts for boating experience. She was moored in Dun Laoghaire Harbour for many happy years.
In 1976, the Irish Sea Scout Standard Boat, the “BP-18” was designed by Kevin McClaverty, and has proved to be an excellent general purpose craft for Sea Scouts.
The BP18 was designed to accommodate a Watch (Patrol) and could be sailed, rowed or fitted with an outboard engine, making it a very versatile boat that could fit around the needs and skills of each different Sea Scout Group.
Today, over 40-years later, x29 BP18s can still be found floating in the lakes, rivers and coasts across the Country.
HERE you will find the live count.
We ask any Scout Group no longer in need of their BP18 to contact us to help find a deserving home.
In the 1980s, CBSI remove Sea Scouting from their programme and developed a Water Activities Centre at Killaloe on Lough Derg on the Shannon. In 1985, SAI published a new series of handbooks covering the nautical requirements of the Sea Scout programme (Sea Training Handbooks, Parts 1 & 2), and also a Sea Scout Leaders Handbook.
These books are a wealth of information and are used a base standard for the next decades.
From 1998 to 2002, SAI complete a very detailed examination of the Sea Scouting programme.
This included a country-wide survey of all Sea Scout Troops, with questionnaires for each Scout and Leader on training schemes and programmes, uniform, activities and competitions. A committee was established to examine the Sea Scout Programme in detail, using the Renewed Approach to Programme (RAP) method recommended by World Scouting.
This was a lengthy process involving 9 stages, with masses of paperwork. The new programme was designed, and a new advancement Badge Scheme was devised to implement it.
The new Sea Scout Programme was launched in 2002, and includes a completely revised Progress Scheme, balanced between ashore and afloat, with a wide choice of activities.
Following the merger in 2004 of SAI and CBSI to create Scouting Ireland, a lengthy programme review process commenced to review every aspect of youth programme delivered by Scouting Ireland.
In 2010 the ONE Programme became the programme of Scouting Ireland and is used in all 5 Programme Sections.
As a result, Sea Scouting Groups now deliver a Sea Scouting programme to all their youth members, from age 6 to age 26.
This takes the shape of the Nautical Training Scheme, a programme accessible to all Sea Scouting and Scout Groups alike.
A decade later, in 2022, the Sea Scouting Team reviewed the Nautical Training Scheme to assess it’s effectiveness to deliver a nautical programme to the young people of Scouting Ireland.
A new pathway focused on seamanship, the marine environment, adventures on the water and the maritime community was created. This was branched into two levels to promote accessibility for all youth members each regardless the level of equipment the Scout Group possessed.
This will later grow into the Scouting Ireland SAILS initiative.
24th Jan 1908
Robert Baden-Powell publishes ‘Scouting for Boys’.
The Boy Scout Movement is created.
15th Feb 1908
Capt. Richard P.Fortune holds the first Scout meeting in Ireland at his home at 3 Dame Street.
1st Dublin Troop (Wolf Patrol) is established and Scouting starts in Ireland.
The Troop spend their summers camped by the Ringsend Coastguard Station.
Local Scouting Association is established in Dublin.
Dublin then divided into districts and renumbered (North City, South City, County).
1st Dublin renamed to 1st South Dublin Troop.
North City and South City districts are amalgamated.
Troop renamed as 1st City of Dublin Troop.
1st Bray Troop register as Sea Scouts with Rev. Lefroy as their Skipper.
BP appoints Lieut. Henry J.Rundle RN, Officer-in-Charge Malahide Coastguard, as 1st Commissoner for Sea Scouts.
7th September 1912
1st City of Dublin (Dame Street) register as Sea Scouts in Ringsend with Capt. John Gill as their Skipper.
21st September 1912
2nd City of Dublin (Gardner Street) register as Sea Scouts in Dollymount with William J.Perrin as their Skipper.
8th November 1912
Scouting administration transfers from City to Local Association.
Troops renamed as 1st DublinTroop, Sea Scouts and 2nd Dublin Troop, Sea Scouts.
1st Dublin Sea Scouts attend the Scout Rally in Birmingham and place 2nd in all-round seamanship competition and were presented a compass from Warrington Baden-Powell.
T.J.Wood-Latimer presents a silver rose-bowl for an annual inter-troop competition.
This becomes the Sea Scout Rowing Regatta and is still held annually to this day, making it one of the oldest Scouting events in the World.
Today regarded as Sea Scoutings premier cup.
3rd Dublin Troop (Ballsbridge) registers as Sea Scouts with W.Grundy as their Skipper.
World War One breaks out.
5th January 1915
Capt. Richard Fortune and 15 of his Sea Scouts from 1st Dublin Troop join the Royal Navy.
In total, 35 Sea Scouts from the Troop join the Royal Navy, 25 as Signallers, 14 did not return.
Capt. Fortune was a Lieut. in the Dover Patrol and fast submarine chaser.
18th February 1915
Port of Dublin Sea Scouts Local Association is established.
Troops are renamed; 1st Port of Dublin (Ringsend), 2nd Port of Dublin (Dollymount), 3rd Port of Dublin (Ballsbridge).
16th March 1915
Capt. Fortune is given command of Motor Launch ML.580.
4th Port of Dublin title is given to 1st Bray Sea Scouts.
5th Port of Dublin (Parnell Street/ Shipping Federation Office) register as Sea Scouts with Capt. Stryman as their Skipper.
Capt. Stryman is an examiner at the School of Navigation but is called to sea due to the war.
5th Port of Dublin soon closes.
4th Port of Dublin (1st Bray) reverts to the local Wicklow Scouting Association.
Major-General Sir William Fry presents a handsome silver cup to the Port of Dublin Sea Scouts for an annual seamanship competition.
This event continues still to this day and is regarded as Sea Scoutings most prestigious cup.
4th Port of Dublin given to new Malahide Troop.
Major-General Sir William Fry appointed Lieut.Governor of the Isle of Mann.
30th July 1920
29 Dublin Sea Scouts attend 1st World Scout Jamboree in London. Contingent led by Capt. John Gill of 1st Port. They are accommodated onboard the HMS Sharpshooter.
Win first prize for best Sea Scout display and the Great Britian Scout Rowing Championship, a whaler rowing race from Westminster Bridge to Northhampton.
The Irish Scout Gazette reports of a Sea Scout Troop in Derry.
5th February 1921
6th Port of Dublin (Kingstown) is formed.
Foundation of the Irish Free State and HM Coastguard begin to exit.
Irish Free State Scout Council is formed.
4th Port of Dublin (Malahide) closes.
The Catholic Boy Scouts of Ireland is established by Fr. Ernest Farrell, a curate in Greystones, Wicklow.
CBSI start a Sea Scout branch using the Boy Scouts of America model.
Sea Scout Units open in Dublin, Cork, Galway, Waterford, Wexford, Derry.
Baden-Powell inspects the Sea Scouts of Dublin at Ringsend.
1st Port of Dublin (Ringsend) launch East Coast Rowing Skiff St.Patrick, donated by Mr. J.X.Murphy TD.
7th June 1931
4th Port of Dublin CBSI (St.Agatha), Clontarf opens.
Opening is attended by 1st Port of Dublin (Ringsend) Skipper J.Cobbe, 2nd Port of Dublin (Dollymount) Skipper Dixon, 4th Port of Dublin (Clontarf) Skipper O’Farrell, 5th Port of Dublin CBSI (Howth) R.Jackson.
27th August 1933
6th Port of Dublin CBSI (Dollymount) launch East Coast Skff St.Brendan.
1st Cork opens a Sea Scout Patrol.
25th November 1934
8th Port of Dublin (Monkstown) launch new East Coast Skiff.
4th Port of Dublin relocates to the Dodder Bank with William J.Perrin as their Skipper.
Launch new East Coast Skiff St.Columba, donated by the Knights of St.Columba.
Irish Free State Scout Council is reformed as Éire Scout Council.
World War Two including the creation of the Maritime Incription and Reserve.
All CBSI Sea Scout Units close.
Only 1st Port of Dublin (Ringsend) and 4th Port of Dublin (Dodder) remain.
Port of Dublin Sea Scout Local Association amalgamates with the Dublin Boy Scouts Association.
Port of Dublin Sea Scout Troops are given new Scout Group Numbers, but retain their Port Numbers.
Boy Scouts of Ireland is established and becomes independant of the previous British Association.
x2 Sea Scout Troops exist.
x4 Sea Scout Troops exist.
1st Wexford (New Ross) Sea Scouts open, the first Sea Scout Group outside of Dublin.
x12 Sea Scout Troops exist.
Boy Scouts of Ireland renamed as Scout Association of Ireland and for the first time welcome females to the organisation.
24th June 1971
Lightship Albatross goes on station as the new Sea Training Centre in Dun Laoghaire Harbour.
x38 Sea Scout Troops exist.
The BP18 standard Sea Scout craft is launched.
CBSI remove Sea Scouting from the programme and develop the National Water-Activities Centre on Lough Derg.
CBSI allow females to join the organisation.
SAI launch new training handbook and schemes.
SAI complete extensive programme review and launch new framework and badge scheme.
1st January 2004
CBSI and SAI amalgamate to create Scouting Ireland
Scouting Ireland launch the ONE Programme.