Explorer Scouts is the fourth section in the Scout Movement, for 14 to 18-year-olds. In this section, young people are given more independence to plan and run their own adventures with their Explorer Unit.
Scouts normally move on to Explorers between the ages of 13.5 and 14.5 - full information about the moving on process can be found on our joining page.
To make the lives of our leaders and District team easier (and allow us to get on with running exciting Explorer programmes!), we use a platform called OnlineScoutManager (OSM) to manage all of our Explorer and Unit information, including contact, medical, and dietry information; passing on event details and taking Explorer signups; and collecting money for the term, camps, and events.
When moving up (and periodically throughout an Explorers time with us) we will prompt you to check and update the information we hold, you can also do this at any time by logging in to the Parent Portal on the OSM website.
We collect a termly membership subscription (known as 'subs') of £47*, which covers the Unit's programme for that term, as well as all of the other costs associated with running Explorers during the year such as membership fees to County and National Scouting, maintaining and insuring equipment, rent for the premises we use, training for leaders, and much more - there's a lot that goes on behind the scenes.
We normally try to collect subs through OSM, using direct debit (however paying via bank transfer, cash, or cheque is possible if preferred), more information on how this system works can be found in our guide to subscriptions.
We have a support fund available in order to ensure all who want to take part can do so. If subs, or any other costs arising from involvement in Explorers, are a problem - please talk to us in confidence to find out how we can help.
*for Explorers who are only members of the Young Leaders' Unit, there is a reduced subs of £32 as this Unit doesn't run a weekly programme.
Explorer Scouts wear a beige uniform shirt with the District Explorer neckerchief (black with a dark-blue and maroon border), and District Explorer nametape.
Shirts are available from Scout Shops, or local school uniform shops (The Famous School Branches on Henleaze High Street has been recommended). We also have some shirts that have been donated when Explorers have moved on, please get in touch if you're interested in one of these (there are limited numbers/sizes). A necker and initial set of badges will be provided when invested.
Information on uniform badges and where they go can be found here.
Explorers are normally invested into their Unit during their first term (as soon as they've gotten an Explorer shirt and told us they're ready!) A necker and initial set of badges will be provided at this time.
Most Units try to make an event of the investiture ceremony, holding it at an interesting time or location, such as underneath Concorde at Aerospace Bristol, or on the Scout Stone at Brownsea Island - Unit leaders will normally let you know how and when they're planning to invest your Explorer.
If you have a question we haven't covered here, please talk to your young person's Unit leader, or contact the District Explorer team.