International adventurer Bear Grylls swooped in by helicopter at the weekend to meet some of Bromley’s up-and-coming explorers.
Taking time out from scaling rock faces, eating snakes, and wrestling with alligators, the former SAS man was on the last leg of a Scout tour set up to “inspire more adults to volunteer” for the organisation.
The ‘born survivor’ was joined by fellow television personality and naturalist Steve Backshall, who presents a deadly animals show, to meet Bromley Scouts at rural woodland just outside south-east London.
Appointed Chief Scout in 2009, Grylls flew in on Sunday May 11 where he took part in a fiery assault course and was later quizzed by the youngsters.
He said: “I was super excited. I met a lot of inspiring young people.
“One of my main objectives for the weekend was to encourage more adults to volunteer with the Scouts to ensure that all young people have the opportunity to join in the adventure”.
Bear Grylls and Steve Backshall
Scout from 14th branch Sandhya Dom, 13, was selected to collect the stars from the aircraft and remarked: “This weekend has been the most memorable thing I have ever done – meeting Bear Grylls and Steve Backshall has been a once in a life time experience.
“Scouting’s all about adventure, so there’s nothing better than having someone like Bear join in.”
Sandhya also managed to get in a question after the day’s activities and found out Grylls’ most challenging adventure was navigating an “unknown” jungle.
Sandhya Dom has her scarf signed by the survival expert
The Scout Association is hoping the series encourages others to help lead 40,000 young people across the UK on the waiting list to join up.
Bromley leader Jack Biddle, 20, said it is a great way to “give back to the community, learn life skills, and have a good time.”
He added: "The Scouts were so excited by Bear’s surprise visit.
“Scouting has done so much in my life so far. I would recommend it to anyone.”