Water Activities

Water Activities

Surrey Scouts participate in a wide variety of water activities, most of which are co-ordinated through the water activities club. Several Districts and others also offer restricted opportunities. Advisers are available for most disciplines and they will be pleased to provide advice and guidance relative to their specialities.


Planning water activities:

Water Activity Permits

Water Activity Permits: The Adventurous Activity Permit Scheme applies to all water activities (see section on Offering Adventurous Activities). For activity specific advice please contact the relevant  County Adviser or an Assessor.

Guidance on Immersion:

Canoeing / Kayaking

County Adviser/Assessor: Canoeing/Kayaking: Roger Harris

General advice is available at:

See details about the County Canoe Centre and Surrey Water Activities Club below.

Canal Cruising

County Adviser: Paul Green – email:

Why not hire a Narrow Boat for a Pack, Troop or Unit expedition? You will need to have an appropriate Adventurous Activity Permit; this is where the County Adviser, can help with advice on suitable courses, and on boats that are available for hire with a skipper (in which case an Adventurous Activity Permit holder is not required)

General advice is available at:

Information is also available from the county adviser on where to hire, suitable routes for weekend or longer trips and any other enquiries on canal cruising.

Driftwood Days Boating Company offer an 8-berth narrow boat for hire. Owned by two GLSW Scout Leaders and based in Surrey. More details can be found at


Dinghy Sailing

County Adviser: please contact

Dinghy sailing can be accessed by just about anyone regardless of location, age or mobility. Dinghy sailing can be fun and laid-back if all you want to do is float around an inland lake and just take in the view, or it can be fast and exhilarating as you hang out on the trapeze of a lightweight racing boat.

General information is available at:

Offshore Sailing

County Adviser: Geoff Dunstan

Offshore Sailing or Yachting is the activity of travelling in a boat powered by the wind through the use of a sail in offshore, tidal waters.

General information is available at:

The Water Activities Club has contacts with several offshore sailing schemes through which day sails, weekends or longer trips can be arranged on sailing yachts with live-aboard accommodation. Why not try out life at sea?

In particular, we have close contact with “Adventures Offshore”. This is a nationally recognised sail training establishment run through scouting. Some other opportunities, including evening sails, can be arranged upon request and could include scout-age groups. Opportunities for a longer voyage in the tall ships race can also be arranged.

For further details ask the County Adviser or enquire directly at Adventures Offshore – 01206 385071 or

Power Boating

County Adviser: please contact

Power boating uses exciting, awesome power machines that require skill and knowledge to master and gives the opportunity for anyone to try. Different types of power boat include wet bikes, rigid inflatables (RIBs) and power cruisers. Power boats can also be used as work boats or rescue boats, but all of them, from the solid, dependable diesel open boats to rubber dinghies with outboards, require skill and knowledge and can be great fun.

General information is available at:



County Adviser: please contact

Pulling is the activity of propelling an open craft primarily by the use of oars where there is fixed seating, a coxswain and a crew

General information is available at:


Swimming, Snorkelling and Scuba Diving:

County Advisers: please contact

General information about swimming is available at:


General information about snorkelling is available at:


General information about Scuba diving is available at:


Water sports (other):

For more information contact:

General information is available at:

Canoe Centre

The Canoe Centre is located on the Wey Navigation at Godalming. It includes changing and toilet facilities and has ample parking. There are 20 single-seater kayaks available and nine Canadian open canoes. Hire charges are £10 for whole day.

Rates for hire:

  • For Scout and other youth groups – SSWAC boat hire per paddler per day: £12. The total charge is subject to a minimum charge of £24 per day per group.
  • Boat hire and minimum charges are reduced by 50% for sessions of 4 hours or less.
  • Permit holders using club kit for their personal use do not pay rental for the kit they use.

To book the Centre contact: Sue Reeve

Cubs, Scouts, Explorers and Scout Network are all welcome at the Centre, but as the Wey Navigation is Class B1 water, bookings will only be accepted from Groups that have arranged for a relevant permit holder (or holders) to be on site and responsible for their members whilst on the water.  If you do not have your own instructors, please contact Roger Harris who will try to find such instructors for you.

How do I get involved?

Contact any of the people named above for specific guidance about a particular area or visit the Surrey Scouts Water Activities Club SASU for more detail and support.


Nature and the outdoors are languages that can be learned. Once you identify a beech tree, tie a clove hitch or cook a simple meal over a fire that you’ve built yourself, you’ll never forget it.'
Bear Grylls, Chief Scout Bear Grylls