Whittington’s Cat – The Goring Heath Badge
In 1988, the 1st Goring Heath Scout group celebrated its 60th birthday. To commemorate the occasion, the Scout Association allowed the group to design a special group badge. The cat design was chosen in honour of the family of one of the founders of the Group, Joan Whittington, a descendant of Dick Whittington.
In 1929 Joan Whittington became the first Cub leader at the group. A year later, when the Scoutmaster left the area, Joan took over the troop which she ran until the 1939-45 war.
The present group Headquarters and land at Crays Pond were donated by Joan’s father who lived nearby at flint house. During the early months of 1990, many trees were blown down locally in fierce gales, including some on the grounds of Flint House. At the request of the Scout group, some of those lost trees were given by Flint House to form a campfire circle at the Headquarters. A count of the rings shows that the trunks are between 80 and 100 years old. They would have been around when Joan Whittington was a little girl living at Flint House. The ‘Flint Circle’ as it is known was first used at a campfire held on 29th June 1990
Joan Whittington’s Jeep
Taken from the Imperial War Museum website:
Donated to the Red Cross Home for Officers in Sorrento, Italy in Autumn 1943 on the orders of General Mark Clark (who had been struck by the Homes lack of transport during an official visit.) Later the Jeep was used by the Red Cross Homes in La Selva and Cuvia, Italy and Klagenfurt, Austria. It was also used for delivering supplies to Casualty Clearing Stations in this theatre. At the end of the war the Jeep was written off and The Red Cross were told they could keep it. In 1946 the Jeep and trailer were driven to England by the donor. The Red Cross showed no interest in keeping the vehicle so it passed into the possession of its former driver, Joan Whittington, who had driven it back from Austria. (Full article can be found here.)
After it returned from Austria, Joan’s Jeep lived in the Old Garage at our scout site until it passed to Imperial War Museum around 1985 where it remains today. The Jeep was revered by the Scouts of the day, especially the bullet hole in the door panelling dating from World War 2.