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Explorer Belt – Luxembourg 2022

Between: 23rd July 2022 - 5th August 2022 Location: Luxembourg Sections: Explorer Scouts, Scout Network Event Organiser: Chris Dean


Explorer Belt – Luxembourg 2022

Between: 23rd July 2022 – 5th August 2022  Location: Luxembourg

Sections: Explorer Scouts, Scout Network

The Explorer Belt is the challenge of a lifetime

It’s a 10-day expedition with a big difference.  It will bring you a real understanding of our closest European neighbours, their cultures and way of life. The Explorer Belt is one of UK Scouting’s Top Awards.

Luxembourg is the focus of the 2022 expedition with travel through Belgium and Germany

You’ll travel through Luxembourg and its neighbouring countries as a team of Explorers or Network members. You’ll meet local people and complete a series of projects. During your expedition, you’ll select your own route and travel about 150 km on foot. After your expedition and your return to the UK, you’ll make a presentation to gain your Explorer Belt.

Previous expedition members have said the Explorer Belt is the best thing they did as part of Scouts.

Important pre-requisites

  • To take part you must be an Explorer Scout aged 16 or over before 23rd July 2022 or a Scout Network member.
  • You’ll need to have hiking, lightweight camping and expedition experience at or equivalent to Chief Scout’s Diamond / Silver DofE award level.
  • You’ll need to attend the two training weekends on November 20th and 21st and on March 19th and 20th 2022.  They will be held in south west London or Surrey.

Start your Explorer Belt journey here

If you’re interested in the Explorer Belt, please register for one of the Information Afternoons at this link.  They are on Saturday 25th September at 2pm and on Sunday 10th October at 3pm.  They are by zoom, and last about 1½ hours.

Key Dates

25th September 2PM – Information afternoon, hosted online.

10th October 3PM – Information afternoon, hosted online.

31st October – Registration cut-off date for attending training.

Saturday 20th and Sunday 21th November – Training weekend

End November – Apply as a team for your Explorer Belt expedition place including an outline of your major project. See separate sections below on Team and Projects

Saturday 19th and Sunday 20th March 2022 – Training weekend

Saturday 23rd July to Friday 5th August – Explorer Belt expedition

August or September 2022 – Explorer Belt presentation and assessment

Saturday 17th September 2022 – Explorer Belt Celebration and Award evening

Explorer Belt Payments

The first training weekend will cost £35.

We will ask for payment for the training weekend when you register for the weekend.

It is estimated that the expedition including the second training weekend will cost about £650 to £750.

We will ask for payment for the expedition in three amounts.

We expect the first of these to be £250, due when you apply for a place on the expedition immediately after the training weekend in November.

The second payment is expected to be £250 due by end January 2022.

The third payment will be the balance of the expedition cost due by end March 2022.

Organisation, Safety and Covid

The Explorer Belt is being organised by Greater London South West Scout County in partnership with Surrey Scout County.

Greater London South West is the lead county and is responsible for the governance and approval of the Explorer Belt training weekends, expedition and activities.

The Explorer Belt will be run in line with the Scouts’ safety policy and rules.

Covid-19  The Explorer Belt Leader team are closely monitoring the ongoing impact of Covid-19 on Scouting and international activities. We will continue to discuss with you the uncertainties created by Covid-19 and how we propose to address them.

Your Team

You’ll carry out your Explorer Belt expedition in a small team of up to 5 members.  As you’ll be living, eating, sleeping and working with your team in close proximity for a long period of time in challenging conditions you’ll want to consider carefully who you team up with.

Forming your team

It’s your and your fellow participants’ responsibility to form teams.  We’ll help you meet the other people who want to do their Explorer Belt and we’ll support you in deciding whether you team together.  However, we will not put you into a team or create teams.

You need to form your team before your make your Explorer Belt expedition application.  When you apply, you apply as a team.

Network teams and Explorer Scout teams

We expect teams to be composed either of 4 or 5 members who are all of Explorer age (ie aged 16 or 17) or of 3, 4 or 5 members who are all of Network age (ie aged 18 to their 25th birthday).

This enables Network teams to have the greater flexibilities the Explorer Belt scheme gives to Network members and to operate under the Scouts adult rules.

For teams containing both Network members and Explorer Scouts, the Scouts Activity and Night Away Permit Scheme rules must be followed. This can be burdensome for both the Explorers and Network members. We only support teams containing both Network members and Explorer Scouts by exception.

Why not larger team sizes?

We have found that teams of 6 or 7 struggle to find accommodation and that in these large teams, team members have difficulty fulfilling the purpose of the Explorer Belt which is to engage individually and directly with the host country’s people.  Team members can spend more time engaged with each other rather than their hosts.  No team can have more than seven members.

What if I’m the only Explorer in my Unit or member of my Network that wants to take part?

We’re very pleased you want to take part.  We’ll help you meet other people who also want to do their Explorer Belt.  We’ll support you in deciding whether you’ll team together, respecting that you and your fellow participants are responsible for forming your own teams.

Explorer Belt Projects

The essence of an Explorer Belt is a small team with a purpose on a journey that inspires the next explorers.  The purpose is achieved by you gaining a real understanding of a different country, its people, culture and way of life.  The main way you do that is by meeting and talking to local people as you carry out your Explorer Belt projects.

Your major project

You will be doing two types of Explorer Belt projects.  They’re one Major Project and ten Minor Projects. The Major Project is developed by you and approved by the Leader Team. It should take you between 10 and 15 hours to complete with these hours spread over the 10 days of your expedition.  This Explorer Belt Projects Download explains how to develop your Major Project and what you’ll need to include in your Explorer Belt application.

Minor projects

The other type of projects you’ll be carrying out are ten Minor Projects.  These are set by the Leader team.  There’s a list of sample Minor Projects at the end of the Explorer Belt Projects Download.

With each Minor Project expected to take you between 45 minutes and 1 hour, you can see that your project work is likely to occupy between 2 and 2 ½ hours per day of your expedition.

Training and Mentors

We expect you to have hiking, lightweight camping and expedition experience at or equivalent to Chief Scout’s Diamond / Silver DofE award level.  Network members especially may have experience of independent travel in Europe.

Your training plan

During the Explorer Belt training events, our aim is to agree with you the level of training, guidance and support you will need in the Explorer Belt competencies (see page 9 of the Scouts “Reach Out and Explore” guide) so that you are confident in completing your Explorer Belt successfully.

We will train you in specific competencies and agree a plan with you for how you will improve your physical fitness and train locally with your home Unit or Network or with your team. You will need to gain a First Response First Aid qualification or equivalent before the Explorer Belt expedition.

Your mentor

We expect you to work with the Explorer Belt Leader team to identify a mentor who can advise and support you including with the training you need to complete your Explorer Belt successfully.

Explorer Belt Leaders

The expedition will be led by an experienced team of leaders who have run six successful Explorer Belts in the last 15 years including to Luxembourg.

The leader team will be in-country during the expedition. They will supervise you on a remote basis.  They will be able to assist you if needed.

Chris Dean

Explorer Belt Leader (Greater London South West Scouts)

Chris has been a member of the GLSW In-Country Team on six Explorer Belt Expeditions over a period of 16 years – to Lithuania, Italy, France, Sweden, Luxembourg, and Galicia ( NW Spain), and the Leader on the last two. More than 150 Scouts from England, Wales and Northern Ireland have participated in this adventure of a lifetime.

Chris says, “the Explorer Belt really allows participants to get under the skin of a country and is the perfect antidote to the package holiday.”

Currently, Chris is Deputy County Commissioner for Programme in Greater London South West and Leader of the 2022 Explorer Belt.

Josh Goodwin

Explorer Belt Leader (Surrey Scouts)

Josh is a Group Scout Leader in Surrey and has been a leader on many camps and expeditions including Explorer expeditions to Wales, Dartmoor, the North Pennines and to Kandersteg.

Josh says, “the Explorer Belt is different from the other Top Awards in Scouting. Participants engage with the residents of the area they are visiting and they find out a lot about themselves as well as about the people and places they visit”.

Josh is a former submariner, a keen sailor and hill-walker, and Surrey’s Explorer Belt Leader.

Tony Crackett

Explorer Belt Leader (Greater London South West)

This will be Tony’s second Explorer Belt in Luxembourg and at least his sixth visit to the area.  It will also be Tony’s 20th Scout Visit Abroad. Tony is a member of the GLSW Explorer Belt Leader team.

Andrew Carvell

Assistant County Commissioner (Explorers) Surrey Scouts

Andrew is a hill-walker, mountaineer and canoeist, who’s led expeditions for young people to Scotland, Switzerland, Norway and Iceland among others.  Andrew is Assistant County Commissioner for Explorers in Surrey.  He’s supporting Chris and Josh to organise the 2022 Explorer Belt expedition.




Further information about the Explorer Belt

You can find further information about the Explorer Belt on the Scouts website at including the link to support materials and the Reach Out and Explore guide to completing the Explorer Belt.


I want the public to know how Scouting continues to open young people’s eyes to a world of extraordinary promise and possibilities.'
Bear Grylls, Chief Scout Bear Grylls