View Poll Results: What is your dress code for a 'standard' Troop night?

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  • Full 'parade ready' uniform

    6 11.11%
  • Shirt and necker; activity trousers

    19 35.19%
  • Shirt and necker only

    26 48.15%
  • Group-branded leisurewear

    1 1.85%
  • No uniform

    0 0%
  • Other

    2 3.70%
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Thread: Unform worn at Troop meetings

  1. #1
    Senior Member oneiros's Avatar
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    Unform worn at Troop meetings

    Another thread has prompted me to consider the uniform requirements we ask our Troop to adhere to on a 'regular' Troop night.

    We generally insist that that they turn up 'parade ready' in shirt and necker, school trousers and polished shoes; we even have an Inspection and award a prize to the best Patrol (for this, and other activities) at the end of the term. While we occasionally relax the uniform requirements based on the planned activity (either 'scruffs bottoms' or no uniform accordingly), full uniform remains the default.

    But is this really appropriate given the activities and games we usually do? Should we be insisting instead on activity trousers rather than smart ones, and what then becomes the required footwear? Once they start wearing trainers, the whole concept of a uniform (as in consistent) look will start to break down.

    Or is the whole concept of a uniform pointless these days. Is it actually putting the Young People off Scouts?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bushfella's Avatar
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    I found that parents were not too keen on school trousers getting dirty or trn at Scouts, or going back smelling of smoke. So we kept them for high days. Until reently there was a free footwear policy at schools locally and as a result many kids did not actually own a pair of proper black shoes. ( This has changed now).

    However, given the rough and tumble of Scouts, I was happy if they turned up with a shirt and necker. They always managed to be smart when we needed them to be.
    Ewan Scott

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  4. #3
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    For clarity I don't mean *literally* shirt and necker only...that'd be a bit Yellow Card!

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  6. #4
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    We're uniform from the waste up, but they usually lose their neckers during the evening at some point.

    I sent two home recently for not wearing their shirts. It was happening a wee bit too often... The uniform is a benchmark for us, we don't want parade uniform (haven't done that in years), but shirt and necker is the absolute minimum for us.

    Beyond that, I think its good to be identifiable as scouts as much as possible, its a potential ice breaker - which can be really handy if you're out and about.

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    Shirt, necker, jeans or activity trousers, no tracksuit bottoms (they look terrible with shirts). Footwear appropriate (usually trainers). If on a formal activity then dark school type trousers or activity trousers, black shoes, dark socks.

    Shirts tend to come off for activities so tee shirts underneath.

    We're an explorer unit.

  8. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by pa_broon74 View Post
    We're uniform from the waste up, but they usually lose their neckers during the evening at some point.

    I sent two home recently for not wearing their shirts. It was happening a wee bit too often... The uniform is a benchmark for us, we don't want parade uniform (haven't done that in years), but shirt and necker is the absolute minimum for us.

    Beyond that, I think its good to be identifiable as scouts as much as possible, its a potential ice breaker - which can be really handy if you're out and about.
    Self indulgent self-quote...

    Only to say... That's Scouts. Explorers don't wear uniform. Which can be a loss on trips, but makes no odds on meeting nights. Most have a uniform though for YL duties as and when.

    Edit** I don't have a shirt. Never bought one when it changed. I wear a necker though over something suitably outdoorsy. /edit**

  9. #7
    Senior Member Rikki01's Avatar
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    I think a common sense approach fits in. Parade dress for parade events.

    A more practice approach to activity dress such as combat style trousers and boots.

    Certainly no trainers in my opinion.

    Dressing appropriately is certainly a life skill and one that is not (yet) old hat.


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    Senior Member CambridgeSkip's Avatar
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    We do shirt and necker. As part of the patrol points system it is 1 point for being on time (defined as being there before the flag is broken) upped to two points if on time and in correct uniform. Defined as shirt on and buttoned up. Necker on and fastened with a woggle. Badges sewn on within two weeks of presentation. We recommend the activity trousers although don't enforce it. We have access to a field and it's a rare week that we don't get out there for some reason so smart shoes and trousers are generally a big no. We also recommend not wearing skinny jeans as they are too restricting on movement. Most follow that advice.

  11. #9
    Senior Member lakes_stu's Avatar
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    We ask our Beavers to have a jumper and necker.

    Most follow this with no problems. However, we have one young chap who always seems to turn up in school uniform (we meet at 6pm).

    We once had a parent who insisted on sending their child in a Beaver polo shirt ('because he sweats a lot and there's no way I'm buying both'). Not a huge problem apart from not having sleeves thus...

    We do have an issue with badges being sewn on randomly. Seems to be a link between this and those parents who don't spend any longer than absolutely necessary engaging with us. This has led to a few raised eyebrows at District. We do point people in the direction of the diagram and give advice (I have printed it and handed it out at investitures in the past), but the issue persists.

    We don't make a big deal of it ourselves, and never 'insist' on anything. We did try inspections at one point, but it led to complaints from parents. Perhaps its because its such a young age group.
    Last edited by lakes_stu; 28-11-2017 at 11:25 AM.
    All posts represent my own opinions only. In no way do they speak for anyone else, including (but not limited to) my group, district, county or HQ.

  12. #10
    Senior Member Ihatecamping's Avatar
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    Our (BPSA) is a bit more ornate than the SA version, but we don't require school trousers for Scout nights, for the reasons outlined above. We do require shirt, necker, beret, and the little tin of pencil/coin/notebook/whistle etc. Tracky bottoms are discouraged but not punished, because some of them don't have other casual, hardwearing gear. They start with 10 points for turning up on time, losing them for any item not present.

    Nobody has yet worn camouflage trousers outside of camp, and we would discourage that, too.

    It's going to be interesting when the current crop of female Cubs goes up, they're quite 'girly' in their dress sense, and I'm not sure that pink flowery leggings will go with the Scout uniform. I'm absolutely sure they don't go with the Cub uniform, but that's a battle I'm not winning at the moment. When they turn up with a beret perched on one ear, and a pink silk flower fixed over the other, there's nothing to do but shake your head and get them running a relay race...

    The uniform doesn't put anyone off, as far as I can tell. They enjoy the progression through badges, and seem to take pride in the smartness of it.

    We do have group-branded leisure wear (hoody and T-shirt), but they're only for camping or very hot weather.

    The leaders try to set an example, rather than demanding that we're ready for a Sovereign's Parade every Friday night. So, we all tend to wear activity-type trousers, shirt, necker and beret with dark outdoor shoes, changing to smart dark trousers and polished black shoes with lemon-squeezers for the one or two parades we do every year.
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  13. #11
    AESL & AGSL shiftypete's Avatar
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    In our Troop we want shirt necker and activity trousers but practical foot wear (i.e. trainers or similar).

    The reason we ask for activity trousers is that they tend to be more suitable to scouting activities than jeans and skirts etc and also parents don't mind when their Scout trousers come back muddy, smelling of smoke or with a bit of paraffin wiped on them. We don't mind if the trousers are the official uniform ones or some other blue walking trousers.

    Unfortunately currently it seems to be a struggle to get them all to wear shirts and neckers nevermind the trousers.

    For Explorers we just ask for shirt and necker and don't mind if they take them off during the meeting but again there is a distinct lack of wearing uniform currently which I will have to try and sort out.
    Last edited by shiftypete; 28-11-2017 at 12:59 PM.

    Peter Andrews AESL of Headingley Pirates ESU, Assistant Group Scout Leader & Webmaster of Falkoner Scout Group
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    Please note all views expressed are my own and not those of any organisation I'm associated with

  14. #12
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    Our scouts are generally shirt and necker - trousers own choice - strong footwear encouraged for general use (e.g. last week they went ice skating in town so pretty pointless getting them to wear hiking boots just to take them off to put on the skates). Cubs similarly - jumper and necker - some come in school trousers or shorts, some in other trousers. We have one lad who though Beavers etc only wore a polo shirt, same into Cubs - wouldn't wear the jumper - had issues with a tight neckline. Speaking to Mum in the last couple of weeks and it seems the school have suggested he is assessed for Autistic spectrum as there are other things which point that way.
    Does anyone know what's going on?

  15. #13
    Senior Member lakes_stu's Avatar
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    Question, when people require activity trousers, do these need to be Scouts branded? Are Craghoppers or similar acceptable?

    Edit - Sorry Pete, just saw your post that answers this for yourself.
    Last edited by lakes_stu; 28-11-2017 at 11:38 AM.
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  16. #14
    ASL Kev's Avatar
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    Shirt and necker for flagbreak and flagdown. I only ask for school trousers/skirt and polished shoes for things like SGD and remembrance parades. I sometimes ask they wear old trousers, such as if I expect them to be crawling on the floor (say indoor caving) and might say long trousers (not shorts or skirts) if I thought the activity required it. Not too fussy about footwear, so long as it is suitable for most scout activities (I do not allow flip-flops). I wear scout shop activity trousers myself but only because the group paid for them.
    Last edited by Kev; 28-11-2017 at 11:47 AM.

  17. #15
    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    Our dress code for normal nights is:

    Shirt and necker
    Activity trousers or shorts (no jeans, no leggings). We try to encourage dark blue or black - personally i think black looks smarter anyway, and a number of our leaders live in black craghoppers all day every day!
    Walking shoes or boots

    i.e. ready to go outdoors and do outdoor activities.

    Parade uniform is worn for formal occaisions (e.g. remembrance day) only:
    Uniform shirt and necker. Woggle (no friendship knots)
    Uniform trousers OR smart black/grey/navy trousers (usually school trousers for the kids, plain black trousers for those adults who dont have the official uniform ones)
    Smart school shoes

    For some occaisions we will make it "necker only" (e.g. if going out on a hike in winter, we'd rather they had appropriate layers than their uniform shirt). For certain nights (water games night being a good example) its completely non uniform.

    Group branded stuff is an extra, not a replacement for uniform.
    Dan Spencer

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