Camp BEL

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Camp Bel is a Scouts Canada camp. It is approx. 53 acres, adjacent to the Thames River in Dorchester, Ontario. It is operated by 1st Dorchester Scout group which are sponsored by St. Peters Anglican Church Dorchester. It has both an open meadow and wooded camp sites,for all seasons use.

The main building has two large halls, a fully equipped and approved kitchen, a bunk house to accommodate 36, washrooms and showers, all of which are available for rent.

On the grounds, there are two rappel towers, zip lines, a pavilion, cabins and various obstacle courses, and an outdoor Chapel. For Scout section camps there are numerous craft stations available, such as wood work, leather work, silk screening and more. Bicycles and canoes are also available.

Although the camp site is primarily for youth full participation, the facility is ideal for Church and family gatherings and retreats. The facility is wheelchair accessible.

Camp BEL Website

History

In the late 1980’s, 1st Dorchester Scouting was growing rapidly, and meeting places were difficult to find. In 1988 , Bob Braunton approached Bert Langford with a proposal to use his farm for Scouting activities. Bert thought this was a splendid idea. He wanted the youth of Dorchester Scouting to benefit from the use of his property.

Legal preparations were made for the use of property over the next few years. In 1990, Camp BEL (named after Bert Elgin Langford) officially opened with the first annual DIBC camp.

In 1993, Bert purchased the first two portable buildings for the camp at a cost of $23 500 "just to get us going". Later in the year he would purchase a third one.

Bert Elgin Langford died on January 18, 1994 at the age of 86. He was a very special man who will be missed by all. In his will, he left all his property and belongings to the Ontario Boy Scouts of Canada. A spruce tree was planted by the entrance of the camp in his memory. His ashes were spread in the woods of the property at Bert’s request.

In 1995, another building was moved on to the property. In 1999, Camp BEL hosted Amikaro '99, the first Amikaro to ever be held overseas. The camp continues to host many camps (including the annual DIBC) to this day.