6th Barry Sea Scouts
                             Kayaks & Canoes

Canoes are correctly open craft like the Canadian conoes, Kayaks are enclosed craft like the Eskimo Kayaks. The terms are loosely interchanged, but most of our craft were kayaks, although sometimes called canoes.


The first canoes the group owned, were built by the scouts at Gladstone Road school during 1947.  The troop built 6 canvas canoes. 4 of the single canoes and 2 double seaters.

For buoyancy the bow and stern sections were filled with cork, and this with the substantial construction made them very heavy.

For me as a young 11-year-old scout I could hardly lift them and the older seniors and leaders had to carry them down to the sea to launch them.


BACK L to R Graham Cook, Don Whittle, Malcolm Pratt, David Shankland, Colin Hicks, Andrew Wilkins, Viv Simpson, Jack Evans, Gordon Yendall. Bill Booth, Gareth Neale, John Wilkins, Wyn Sheryn, David Booth

SEATED Ken Harris, Peter Ryan, Lyndon Jones,

FRONT L to R Arnold Lawry, David Pemberstone, Roger Cornwall, Graham Watkins, Richard Coslett, Robin Fenton, John Cook, Clive Moore,         ?         ?       Tommy Riley, Robert Tucker,        ?       ?        George Baldwin


In 1968 the patrols each built a PKB Canoes. Although the canoes came in kit form with the frames pre cut, there was still much intricate woodworking required to build them.

These were much lighter than the ones they replaced although they were still canvas covered, but they looked the bees knees.

Boating particularly at Barry on the Bristol Channel is very dangerous for the unwary. This is illustrated by the fact that three boys once broke into the Watchtower and stole some of our canoes and took them out into the harbour, where they capsized, and one of the boys was drowned.

The launching and naming of the new PKB Kayaks by Bronwen Ware at the 1968 Summer Camp

L to R Bosun, ?, Bronwen Ware, ?, John Elliott, Chris Ware, Rob Gough, Alan Pyecroft, Chris Perrott, Nigel Vick

Dave Williams (Will) leading a patrol on an overnight expedition on the Thames

In 1969 our Senior Scouts ran the Water Activities section of the Welsh Jamboree at Lawrenny.

The Welsh Scout Council purchased 6 Fibreglass canoes with plywood decks for use at the Jamboree. After the camp the 6th Barry looked after these canoes, and used them for many years.

Seagull Patrol preparing for an expedition from the River Cleddau Milfod Haven

In 1976 each patrol built a fibre glass canoe.

After firstly hiring a mould we made a canoe in two sections hull and deck. These were made perfect and we then made our own mould.

Then one patrol over a week-end at the Scout Hall, made there own turquoise coloured single seater canoe.

The Peewit Patrol were over keen when they made their canoe, and took it down to the Watchtower on the Sunday afternoon to try it out, but it hadn't cured properly and bent amidships when they launched it. They had to remake theirs later on. The Hall stank of Resin for months afterwards, but we did make 10 canoes.


The training for canoeing in the 6th Barry was of a basic standard, for handling the craft in tidal conditions, and preparations for overnight expeditions on rivers etc. We always sought a location for Summer Camps where we could use the canoes and undertaken expeditions on the water in the canoes.


The greatest 6th Barry Canoeing expedition was undertaken by John Wilkins and Ken Harris in 1958.

They canoed from the origin of the Rhine in Basle, Switzerland 500 miles down the Rhine to the Hook of Holland , in 10 days.

The log of this expedition that was submitted for the Goodson Trophy is reproduced under Expeditions section.

Kayaking at the Watch Tower