"THE HOPE AND PROMISE OF
A BETTER WORLD"
H.R.H. The Duke of Connaught
Wednesday, July 31st, 1929
"First, let me welcome most
warmly the many Scouts who have come from all parts
of the Empire, and from most civilised countries. May
they spend a happy time with their brother Scouts of
the United Kingdom, who have been so looking forward
to meeting them, and making them thoroughly at home
in their midst.
"We are assembled here today to
celebrate the coming of age of a great social
Movement, whose far-reaching and world-wide influence
no man can adequately measure. Beginning twenty-one
years ago, who could then have imagined that the
small camp at Brownsea Island would one day, and
within a generation, number two millions, embracing
lads of every country, of every race and of every
creed—all imbued with the same ideals, and all
carrying aloft the same banners of mutual service and
brotherhood. It is a very ennobling spectacle, which
will assuredly leave its mark on the future of
mankind, and to which statesmen of the latter day
will bear willing testimony. With the enthusiasm of
youth, these lads are marching forward to a self
reliant manhood, eager and willing to snatch the
torch of progress which feebler hands lay down, and
to bear their part in the burden of the Empire, and
in the world’s work.
"Young as the Scout Movement
still is, it has a record of deeds rich in self
sacrifice and heroism. No less than ten thousand
British Scouts gave their lives for their Country in
the Great War, while eleven won the Victoria Cross
and over one thousand received special decorations.
The Movement is not military, and has no military
significance; it exists solely to train boys to be
capable and useful citizens.
"Though among the Officers of the
Association, who voluntarily give their time to the
work, are many ex-soldiers, they realize better than
those who have not seen fighting, the horrors of War,
and are anxious to do what they can in training boys
to peace and goodwill. Any, and all, especially the
poorest, are welcomed to receive the training which
the Scout Movement provides, the only condition being
that they take the Promise, which is:—
(a ) To do their duty to God and the
(b) To help other people at all times.
(c) To obey the Scout Law
"The Scout Movement has now been
adopted by forty-two countries; the watchwords are
spoken in every tongue, and its hands of brotherhood
are clasped across the seas from shore to shore.
"The history of our race is a
record of great deeds, and embraces the names of many
great men, but ‘Peace hath its victories no less
renowned than War,’ and in its pursuit there are many
triumphs to be won, equally beneficent and more
enduring. The future historian will rank the Scout
Movement as one of the great landmarks of our time,
and will add the name of its Founder to the roll of
the World’s Reformers. Few men have rendered greater
service to the cause of humanity than Robert
Baden-Powell and none deserve a higher place in the
Temple of Fame, and in the esteem of their fellow
"Today the Nations of the World
are engaged in repairing the ravages of the Great
War, and in laying the foundations of a lasting
peace. To human hands and human hearts the task is
confided, and in its accomplishment the youth of our
times must bear a worthy part.
"I am thrilled at the spectacle
before me, and as President of The Boy Scouts
Association I am glad indeed to be here. If I ask
myself the question ‘What does the future hold for
our countries and for humanity?’ I read in your faces
the hope and promise of a better world, and in the
light of your eyes is the dawn of a better day.
"One word more—Always
treasure the memory of this great day; hold fast to
your faith, and keep the Scout Law."