Kandersteg International Scout Centre

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After the 1st World Scout Jamboree the Scouts lookout for a place where they could live Jamboree feeling 365 days per year and find it in Kandersteg. Construction begins on the Lötschberg tunnel in Kandersteg. The 14 kilometres long tunnel will extend direct rail service between the Bernese Oberland, Wallis and Italy. More than 3’000 workers live in Kandersteg at the northern entrance to the tunnel. During a visit to Kandersteg in 1922, already a well known holiday destination, the Chief Scout of Switzerland, Walther von Bonstetten, discovers a derelict Chalet. He proposes the creation of an International Home for Scouts in Kandersteg. Lord Baden-Powell follows von Bonsetten’s invitation and is enthused about the place! In 1923 the Home Association purchases a chalet and land along the banks of the river Kander. The Centre was inaugurated on the 21st of May 1923. In a letter to all Scout Associations, the International Bureau wrote: ,,We have great pleasure in announcing to the Scouts of all countries that the scheme proposed by the Chief Scout has now been realised.” In 1930 the International World Scout Committee meets in Kandersteg in July. Baden-Powell attends the meeting, visits the Chalet and inspects the new campground. While inspecting the camping area, B.P. uses a hill on the campsite to have a good view of both the campsite and the Centre. This hill becomes to be known as ‘B.P.’s Hill’, and it is called like that also nowadays.

As of 1931 Lord Baden-Powell invites all Rover Scouts to join him in Kandersteg for the first Rover Moot, meeting of all young leaders in scouting. 2’500 Rovers from 23 countries answer the call from the Chief.

Many Canadian Venturer and Rover Scouts have volunteered at Kandersteg. You may identify them by their pink shirt or necker.

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