Scout Association Logo Ham Scout Group:

HQ refurbishment project

Ham Scout Group Badge

Ham Scout Group Hut Renovation Project


About the hut

The group was formed in 1946 during the post-war expansion of housing in Ham and North Kingston, initially linked to St Andrews Church. As the group expanded, meetings moved to Grey Court School. The group were eventually successful in leasing a plot of land in the south-east corner of the school playing field, where parents and local tradespeople built the group’s headquarters “hut” which formally opened in 1967.

Plot and access

The front of the plot is accessed from the footpath and bridleway "South Avenue" between Ham Common and Ham House. It is difficult but possible to drive a long wheelbase van between the bollards defining the bridleway from the Ham Common car park to the south, but there is wider access to the bridleway from the Sandy Lane end, and this has been used for skip and materials delivery in the past. The frontage steel fencing is maintained by the local authority as part of Grey Court School boundary. A double steel gate provides normal pedestrian access to the plot, but the southernmost fence panel can also be unbolted to provide slightly wider access for other maintenance needs. The southern boundary fencing is maintained by the neighbouring properties on Ham Common. The north and west boundaries which adjoin Ham and Petersham Tennis Club are maintained by the group. A small area of grass surrounds the hut and a steel container, used for storage, sits in the south east corner of the site. A secure steel gas-storage container is located next to the external south west corner of the building.


Walls and roof

The hut comprises breeze-block and brick walls built between one-and-a-half-brick square pillars set with centres 3.06m apart. This creates three sections front and rear and five sections along the sides. The hut therefore measures just over 9m wide by 15m long giving a 141m2 footprint. The side pillars and walls are about 3.5m high. The three central pairs of side pillars support steel trusses with three diagonal struts each side, spanning the width of the hut as can be seen in the interior view below. The roof rests on these and steel purlins spanning between the the end walls. The ridge is approximately 6m above ground. The roof was installed in 2014 comprising 100mm-insulated 'plastisol'-coated steel panels. Steel gutters drain into a single downpipe either side which lead to soakaways.

External doors and windows

Access to the building is provided by two pairs of steel doors to front and north side, secured by heavy-duty padlocked steel bars. Immediately inside the doorways interior are door mats embedded within floor tiles, forming a slight threshold step which is a minor obstacle for wheelchair users. Small flat-roof porches protect the exterior doorways. Single-glazed windows are set in the side and rear walls. The side windows are all 190x125cm but the rear windows vary. The windows are secured by steel mesh grilles all round, mounted on four wall-bolts.

Interior: Hall

The main feature of the hut is an open hall space, 9x12m, used for meetings, games and other activities. The concrete floor base is covered by a timber floor supported on rows of single bricks and possibly timber joists as well. Much of the perimeter of the hall comprises timber benching providing storage and robust informal seating. These benches are set on a single-brick base above the concrete and are 55cm high by 65cm deep.

Interior: Rooms

Internally, the rear, western, section between the final pillars and end wall is partitioned across the width into three compartments defined by the end-wall pillars, above which is a loft space used for storage that spans the width of the building. The southern section is divided equally by a breeze-block wall into separate male and female cloakrooms and floor-tiled WC. The central section houses the kitchen and a breeze-block wall at the northern third of the section isolates a staircase leading to the mezzanine storage loft above. The northern section houses a meeting room/office (known as the "Court of Honour Room"). The south west corner of the room provides access o cupboard storage under the staircase.



Court of Honour Room



Mains electricity and gas enter the property in the south-east corner with meters and fuse boxes located in the storage benches. Space heating is provided by two 16.12kW output Vulcana Kestrel 55 electrically-powered flue fan-assisted gas heaters located in the north-east and south-west corners of the hall, fitted with automated shut-off timers. Gas piping also extends to capped outlets in the kitchen and Court of Honour Room. Mains water enters at a metered point in the kitchen. The only heated water at present is provided by an electric water-heater above the kitchen sink. Pipework exists to non-functioning hot taps from a former gas boiler once mounted on the south wall in the female cloakroom. The exhaust vent still exists. Mains drainage is effected to an inspection pit outside the south west corner of the building, linking to a further pit in the Avenue and onwards to Ham Common. Onward electricity, water and sewage services are provided from the hut to the adjacent Ham and Petersham Tennis Club pavilion building within the school paying field area. Landline copper telephone service arrives externally at the south-east corner and exterior cabling connects to a master line box in the Court of Honour Room.

Renovation and improvement works required