Reflection from the COs

In 1977 a few people from Marlowes Baptist Church had an idea to arrange a week’s worth of camping for ‘twenty-five boys from the Junior Church, Youth Club and Boy’s Brigade’ as a ‘pilot venture’ (as reported in the July/August 1977 issue of ‘Grapevine’). Little did they know this would become an annual trip, involving girls as well as boys and open to the other Baptist Churches in the town. Now, forty years later, it is still going strong. (Editor’s note: Carey was formed from Marlowes and Boxmoor Baptist Churches in1980)

This year we spent it on the Isle of Wight. There is always a lot of planning that goes into organising the Camp, but our fabulous volunteer staff were, as ever, more than up to the challenge (a massive thank you to them!).But none of it would be possible without the children. We had thirty children ranging from eight to eighteen – an amazing group full of excitement, energy, laughter and joy.

Carey & Belmont Youth Camp has been a wonderful place for me. Over the twenty-plus years I have been attending, I have made many great memories, and forged plenty of friendships, all because of this annual trip. This year, thirty more children created their own stories, their own memories and, hopefully, made new friendships that will also last a lifetime. I don’t think any of the children will forget the wonderful break we’ve had: the glorious views from the monument; the fantastic days out; and the enjoyment we shared. Please see below our daily blog that was created while we were there for a more detailed glimpse at what we got up to:

If you are interested in attending Camp, or know someone who would be, please contact me and come along next year to West Runton in Norfolk.

God bless you all.

Saturday 26th 2017

It’s here already, time to pack up and break camp. The bank accounts have been emptied, tuck has sold its last sweet and orderlies have washed their last bowl.

It’s been a blast again!!! The concert wasn’t a disappointment either, we have some proper LOL moments, strange acts and wonderful voices!! Adj wrapped up the show with a tear-jerking speech (Thanks Mikey for all the hard work this week). The 14plus chilled afterwards with a late night bbq on the beach.

The John Hay Shield was won by Bubble Bobble, squad leader Jess will have her name added to the list. Congratulations to them, especially as it was very tight between the squads.

Now we are all packed and awaiting the coach. I will let you know once we are on the mainland and have a rough eta. Your angels are on their way home (with all their washing in tow).

Friday 25th

That’s it! The evening programmes are over, fun had by all. The end of the week is now in sight and it is our last full day onsite. Ferry crossing is all booked for 12.30 tomorrow, so we should be back at Carey for 3.30pm onwards (I will update on here if we are delay). We will be ending on a high, today we have the last sport comp, last chance to get points towards the John Hay Shield.

This evening everyone is invited to probably the greatest talent show on the Isle of Wight this year; The Belmont & Carey Camp Concert…. what theme will it be this year? The campers are getting in their last practice before the show starts!

Thursday 24th

Last night the 14+ played the wide game; after a face-off between runners and catchers the 14+ were loaded onto the minibuses and taken to their drop off locations, five miles from the site. The teams made their way back to the site swiftly, and entered the field where the square, and catchers were waiting. One team lay in wait for a while in order to formulate their plan of attack. Then, at a nail-biting 2 minutes before midnight they decided to make a run for the square. The staff gave chase, and soon the field was alive with shadows running across the darkness. 14+ member after 14+ member was caught, each putting up a valiant fight, one even lifting a staff member from the ground. Amid all of the confusion, our brave Lily made a daring dash for the square and made it in! Huge congratulations to her! Last to be caught was Lucy, who took advantage of the confusion in the main dash to hide in the grass. Unfortunately she was spotted when she got up to run again and, despite a valiant effort, was caught. At breakfast the next morning, Lily was hoisted onto the shoulders of the 14+, and paraded proudly around the marquee to the sound of ‘I am the one and only’. Another great wide game at Camp!

We are now off to Robin Hill!!

Tuesday and Wednesday 23rd

The sports team knocked it out the park, or should that be the field? We were treated to a game of adrenaline pumping dodge ball. Lots of fun had by all.

We would like to also give a huge shout out to our meal time entertainment team too; lots of classic moments as the squads pit their wits against the Taskmaster in a series of strange tasks (e.g. filling a welly boot with the weirdest thing they could find).

The day trip to Blackgang Chine went well and thankfully the weather held out for us. The 14plus had the thrill of climbing up cliffs and jumping into the sea follow by monsterboarding.

So on to Wednesday. It’s here and includes what is probably the highlight for most 14plus members; wide game tonight!! I have already overheard a few tactical chats about how they are planning to increase their chances of winning tonight. Only 12 hours to go!

Hunt the officer has now finished, the kids had to search Sandown finding various staff members in strange fancy dress!!! It’s been a great few days, and sadly we’re already the half way mark. How does this week pass by so quickly?


Monday 21st

What a night it was last night for the programme games! Juniors seemed to love the Cluedo game which saw them save a captured staff member on the campsite by solving puzzles. It was won by Fred and his team, massive well done to them!

Seniors got transported into the marvel universe and were charged with creating their own iron man suits, this involved winning minigames in order to buy the parts needed (a problem Tony Stark doesn’t have, funnily enough) and putting together the best combat suit possible. This brilliant game was won by the boys’ team after building the “MK 43” suit. Well done team!

Now on to 14+ where The Potter Puppet Pals were called upon to solve the dastardly murder of Neville Longbottom over a sophisticated dinner and drinks last night. Neville was murdered accidently by Luna Lovegood with a badly made love potion. Awards were granted for ‘best actor upon discovering she was a murderer’ – Luna (Lucy) – the award for ‘correctly guessing the murderer’ goes to Hermione (Josie), and the ‘most accused’ was Draco (Robbie).

Finally, yesterday was also the all camp beach trip and I estimate that 75% were brave (or maybe silly) enough to get in the sea. I can confirm it was definitely not warm!

Now it’s “Inter Squad” competition time. Many sports games will be played and hopefully much fun will be had!

Sunday 20th

The beakfast was a hit, thanks to our Breakfast Chefs Murray, Meg, Hazel & Josh. Camp has definitely started, especially as it was a great start to the evening programme games last night; the Juniors seemed to love Guess Who, a game that included racing to collect giant puzzle pieces and building the pictures as a team. The winning team was Caitlin’s team, well done to them!

Seniors got stuck into Hawkeye, involving target practice where they shot soft arrows at unfortunate staff members to earn victory. This was won by the boys team hitting Breckell a record number of times, the shooting skills were phenomenal!

14plus went night hiking along the coastal path with a number of mini games played along the way. James and Sophie were the clear winners!!

Sunday service has just finished, so we were able to give thanks to God and hear the kids lovely singing voices. Thank you to Carey Minister Colin for a fun service, this is his first year at Camp so we hope he’s enjoying it!

Now on to our roast dinner, we may be hardcore campers but we need some home comforts sometimes.

We are also looking forward to the whole camp visiting the beach after lunch, hopefully some will be brave enough to have a dip in the sea!

Saturday 19th 

We are here!!! Arrived safe and sound. Orderlies (Ed and Kieran) and the super site staff (Sam, Matt & Andy) are setting up the tents, the programme staff are preparing the first activity and the chefs are cooking the first meal.

That just leaves our campers; they are settling into their their new home, a lot of sleepy faces on the coach but the sea air has done its magic. The once quiet field is now full of laughter and fun, Isle of Wight we are back!!

Fun was had with Taskmaster Paul to get the party started at our all camp competition this afternoon. Squad B were the final winners and it was well deserved, congratulations to them!

7 Days to Go

1 week until the fun begins. This Friday (the night before camp) Carey Church will be open between 7:00pm and 7:30pm. Please bring along your camp kit, medical forms, medicines (if required), cake, spending money for the bank and £5 if you want a camp photo. 14plus campers please also remember to bring your consent form & money for the day out (£20). There will be a number of staff here including our COs, Adj, MO and the Banker.

We will meet again at Carey Baptist Church at 6:30am on Saturday 19th August to travel to the Isle of Wight, with an aim to arrive there around lunchtime. Bring a packed lunch and something to read or do for the journey.

Happy Packing!

50 Days to Go

Just under 50 days to go until 30 children from Carey & Belmont Churches set sail for their annual summer camp, this year on the Isle of Wight. We always have loads of fun, great entertainment and enjoyable activities; all planned and run by our brilliant staff of volunteers. The only extra thing we need is just the hot weather, which isn’t always guaranteed!