Meet the Staff

The Camp Chief


Andrew Sharkey, Camp Chief


Andrew Sharkey, known as ‘Sharkey’ throughout Scouting, joined Scouting at 8 years old as a Cub and has been a Leader, in various roles, for over 30 years.

This is Sharkey’s 16th Blair Atholl Jamborette and his 4th as Camp Chief. It will also be his last as Camp Chief, but rest assured he will be back at the Jamborette in 2020 in his new role as Chief Commissioner for Scotland. Over the years he has been on the Hill Team and ran the climbing activities. Following that he was a subcamp chief for a number of camps.

As Camp Chief Sharkey, leads and co-ordinate all the teams from the planning stage right through to the camp itself. The planning starts some 18 months before the event and of course there is a review of everything after the camp and a discussion for ways to improve the event for the future.

This year, the 36th Jamborette is the largest yet with over 1700 Scouts and Leaders from 21 countries attending the 10-day camp. And the numbers will surge again over the middle weekend when over 600 Scouts and leaders join in the Satellite camp to visit the main camp and participate in the fun.


The Core Team

The Core team who manage the Jamborette

Whilst Sharkie chairs the core team and as overall responsibility, we should not forget this small group of people, because without them, the Jamborette would not happen. For months, they hold regular meetings planning the next Blair Atholl, estimating the costs of food and materials often a year in advance, no easy task in these times.

The amount of administration involved in running such an event is enormous, keeping track of every one that has applied, devising activities, programming the activities, coordinating transport, the main site tentage, catering etc. They all have their own skills and use them jointly to pull the camp together.

And of course, they do not do all the work themselves - they have teams of people working with them, we should not forget these people as well, and the staff at our Scottish Headquarters that also put a lot of effort into the event.


Site Services

Many of this crew were on site from Wednesday or Thursday before Blair Atholl, preparing the site, laying waterpipes, electricity cables,arranging the portaloos etc. - all essential work. And it will be Saturday or Sunday after the camp, along with other members of staff takin down the tentage and removing the facilities.

And during the camp, they work away tirelessly collect rubbish, tidying and cleaning the portaloos, unblocking them - not a pleasant job - but it has to be done, building campfires and many many other tasks.

Who pitched the marquees, positioned the portaloos around the site, built the gateway and many other jbs around the site - now you know - I hope you thanked them for their efforts.


The Reception



Another small team of leaders, again working in shifts, always dressed in full uniform whilst of duty, as they are the focal point for all visitors to the camp site. They man the phones, act as a communication control centre for the core team on the radio system, book people off site when they leave, and back in again on their return, so the camp staff know where everyone is, Lost and Found, all controlled from this area. And the Lost and Found roll goes on after the camp as people discover they have lost things and send in enquiries as to whether it has been found.


The Camp Hospital

As with every camp, it is essential that there is a sound support in the way of First Aid for the Scouts. Blair Atholl is no exception and in fact there are several resident doctors on site and available 24bhours a day. They are supported by many nurses and paramedics and a host of qualified First Aiders.

The hospital comproses of a marquee, with a wooden floor and comproses of a reception area, treatment room and a rest room, should it be needed.

The doctors hold a surgery twice a day during the camp to attended to any ailmets or injuries that may have occurred.But they are always available as they carry a radio with them and sub-camp leaders can make contact with them over the radio network.

The usual cuts and bruises, sore throats, headaches, strains and sprains are the main causes of visits to the doctors.

The doctors do urge that everyone should wask their hands immediately before handling food and be careful of what you do - think before you do something because you could cause a serious injury to someone.


The Quartermaster's Store

QM Store

Now here is a team of people thatbthe Scouts visit regularily - to pick up their rations for the day.. Working away behind the scenes in the Store to ensure that all the food stuffs are available for each patrol on time, in the right quantities and occassional to meet any special dietary needs that there may be in a patrol. No mean feat,

Can you imagine how many litres of milk are delivered to the site every day to satisfy the needs of nearlt 1700 people and 40,456 meals?

A few examples of the total quantities brought onto site over the 14 days :- 4,400 litres of milk, 2196 loaves of bread and 810 Kg of bananas.

Meat, fruit, yogurts, soft drinks, all mysteriously appear on site thanks to this team who continuously monitor the useage to ensure they do not run short.



The Admin Team

Just a few people who spend two weeks in a cabin in the field. No Way! This team often work into the wee small hours of the morning organising various aspects of the camp.

From the time the first perso, whether it be staff or scout, registers until the last overseas contingents leave Scotland, they are involved.

They prepare all the security badges, allocated patrols and leaders to the sub-camps and then the massive task of the co-ordinationnof the Home Hospitality for all theoverseas scouts and leaders AND the arranging of all the transport from Home Hospitality to bring the contingents back together again again to ensure they catch theirflights etc, That is no mean task.

The Staff Club

 The Staff Club


The quiet quarter - well somewhere for the satff to drop in for a tea or coffee, have a read at the daily papers and general relax when the are not working.

Evening entertainment is also provided most nights - a quiz, a re=play of the International Show Case which many staff don't have the opportunity to see in the Kross - and of course supper is served here for the staff.


The Kastle Entertainment Team

Another group of people who manage all the entertainment in the evenings at the Kastle. There is a lot of technology used in thisarea between stage lighting and sound facilities and they are responsibile for arrangine the activities and setting up all the equipment for each event.

The Activity Team

The Activity Team Office


By far the largest team on the camp - without them there would be no Blair Atholl. Apart from the leaders on the actual activities, there is a small team of leaders working way in the background working out the number of young people that each base can handle and then allocateing somanyplaces to the sub-camps dailly. There are some long nights in the activity cabin whilst they untangle the problems.



The PR Team

A small team of people running about with cameras, phones and a drone providing all the ictures on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The drone provides all the arial pictures and videos which gave great views of the campsite which previously could only be achieved by flying over in an aircraft.

They also hosted the reporters and video teams from the local newspapers and TV companies who provide some fantastic cover of the event.


And the rest, who must not be forgotten.

There are small groups of leaders manning the Post Office, the Bank and the Kafe, all the sub-camp staff looking after their 16 patrols on their sites and lots of others that are enarly invisible, but they are working away behind the scenes to amke the event a success.


We thank them all.