8th Colchester Scout Group first met in September 1960 under the leadership of Len Cheek after his previous group, the 32nd Colchester had to close after its GSL, Rev. Cecil Parker, moved away from the area.
Initially meetings were held in the parish hall in Greenstead Road then in St Anne’s parish hall in Compton Road before settling down in the new Parsons Heath School in Templewood Road. At that time an increase in scouting numbers enabled the troop to split in two, Apollo led by John Williams and Gemini led by Ernie Sawkins.
Meanwhile the Cub Scouts, under the initial leadership of Len’s wife Peggy, had also grown so that three Packs were necessary meeting in Hazelmere School. They were called Lions with Ann Edmonds as leader, Tigers with Rosina Cole and Hikers with Alan Haynes. The Hikers were originally part of the reformed 32nd Colchester.
When Beaver Scouts were started in 1986 the Group were quick to respond with the Manitoba Colony under the leadership of Christine Hipwell. By 1991 another colony was formed, Alberta, under Helen Bland.
A Venture Unit was also formed and named Posiedon under the leadership of Mark Whiter.
An extremely supportive Group Committee enabled the leaders to concentrate on their job so the 8th Colchester grew to become one of the largest in the area.
Today, we remain one of the largest groups in the area with over 80 young people and an energic leadership team.