1984 - 2009

This page focuses on the years since I joined the band in 1984 as a member of 1st Hook Guide Company, right up until February 2009, when I took over writing our Green Scarf articles.
For 2009 to the current time, go to my articles section by clicking on the 'Green Scarf Articles' tab at the top of the page.
Karen Shortland
Based in Surbiton, Surrey, 1st Hook Scouts formed the original band in 1938, as a simple bugle and drum combination.
In 1984 1st Hook Guides were invited to join, and since then they have been known as 1st Hook Scout & Guide Band.
They meet for just two and a half hours every Monday evening, and members are aged 9 years and upwards.
1st Hook is what is known as a 'traditional style' marching band, using the full range of military instruments, and their music repertoire has grown over the years to include everything from well known military marches to full concert band arrangements of both popular music and film themes. This enables them to perform as both a concert band and a marching band, depending on the requirements of an event.
They held the title of National Marching Band Champions of The Scout Association from 1994 to 2001, which was the last year that The National Scout Band Festival was held. They also wear the coat of arms representing the Royal Borough of Kingston on their band uniform.

The band has performed at many prestigious events, including The Royal Tournament; the Lord Mayor of London’s Parade; The London Marathon; Hampton Court Palace Flower Show; The Queen’s Birthday Parade; The London VJ Parade and the annual Queens Scout presentation at Windsor Castle.
They have visited several other countries to perform, including Disneyland Resort Paris, The Menin Gate at Ypres, Legoland Denmark, and have also appeared on both the BBC and Danish television. The Band has twice taken part in The International Tournament for Marching Bands and Majorettes in Barcelona, gaining a creditable third place each time.

1st Hook was asked to play at the 50th Anniversary of The World Scout Foundation at The Natural History Museum in London during 1998. The guest list for the event included HM The Queen and HRH Duke of Edinburgh, along with a large number of Kings and Queens from other European countries.

They participated in the London International Military Tattoo at Wembley Arena in 2000, as part of a massed band to represent the Traditional Youth Marching Band Association. In the finale of the event, 1st Hook played alongside some of the top military Bands in the world, including Her Majesty’s Royal Marines; The Band of The United States Air Forces Europe; The Band of the Brigade of Ghurkhas and The Central Band of The White Russian Army.

In 2002 and 2003 the Band played at the Guildhall in London, at an event held to present members of the Scout Association with their Queen’s Scout Award.
2004 proved to be another busy year, with competitions, concerts, local events and parades, and also the Fanfare team playing at The Savoy Hotel in London, as well as the Band once again participating in the Lord Mayor of London’s Parade.

In 2005 the Band took part in St George’s Day Parade for Queen’s Scouts at Windsor Castle, alongside the Band of the Grenadier Guards.
In 2006 they won three gold awards at the European Open Band Championships in Midsomer Norton near Bath, and to complete the year they again took part in the Lord Mayor of London’s Parade.

In 2007 the Band played an active role in celebrating 100 years of Scouting, taking part in various local events including a concert called ‘Bands United’, which saw them play both individually and together with two other local bands from the Royal Kingston Scout District. All three bands came together for a finale which had over 100 musicians on stage.
The highlight of the year was joining other local Bands from the Greater London South West county to participate in the Lord Mayor of London’s Parade. This massed band again included more than 100 musicians and was seen briefly in the live coverage on BBC television.

2008 was a busy year as the Band celebrated its 70th anniversary, and played at many local events throughout the year, including two successful concerts. but the main highlight of the year was a trip to Cascais in Portugal to participate in a band festival. 1st Hook was the only entry from the UK, and was very well received by their Portuguese hosts. They were also fortunate enough to meet the niece of Lord Baden Powell who commented that they truly represented what Scouting was all about.

In 2009 the Band performed a mini concert for their local Scoutlink Group who provide Scouting activities for handicapped adults, and the evening was combined with the Band’s annual inspection which saw them awarded the top ‘A’ grade again. The Band then held their main concert and awards evening a month later.
In April the Band played in their local St Georges Day Parade for Royal Kingston District Scouts, and a week later played at a local Royal British Legion branch in a ceremony to dedicate a new memorial to those who gave their lives in WWII.
In July the band travelled further afield to Bromyard in Herefordshire to play during the town's Gala weekend. They played in the main arena as well as on the bandstand.
In September they took part in the Surbiton Festival and also the Kingston RNLI Regatta, and during October they played in a concert held by Surbiton RBL as well as their own halloween themed Hook @ Home concert too. November saw them participating again in the Lord Mayor of London's Parade, followed by Remembrance Parade too.
They rounded off the year by joining local Brownies and Guides to perform Christmas carols outside Surbiton Station, raising money for Group funds, and two weeks later they played in a Community Christmas Celebration at a local church.
This takes us up to the end of 2009. You can read more current information in the Green Scarf articles from 2009 onwards.