Coming to the UK
Welcome to UK!
We're pleased that you have chosen to visit and we hope that you will enjoy your stay with us. This information tries to answer the questions that are most commonly asked by overseas visitors.
The White House
London E4 7QW
Situated in North-East London on the edge of beautiful Epping Forest, Gilwell Park is famous throughout the world for its Scouting heritage, beautiful setting and stunning range of activities, with all the advantages of being close to the capital. The White House is our fully restored grade II listed building. Stylish, comfortable and best value accommodation set in 108 acres of beautiful countryside. With 40 bedrooms available, including singles, doubles, twins, family and fully accessible rooms, all equipped with colour television, power shower, free Wi-Fi, tea, coffee and biscuits. Continental and Full English breakfasts are served every day for guests.
65-67 Queen’s Gate
Tel: + 44 (0) 20 7590 6909
Situated in the heart of South Kensington, 65 Queen’s Gate is perfectly located for some of the great activities London has to offer. With so much to explore on your doorstep, make the most of being in Central London. Nearby museums include the Natural History Museum, the Science Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum. We are also a stone’s throw away from Green Park and Hyde Park, shops, eateries and of course, iconic Buckingham Palace, Big Ben and the Tower of London to name a few.
The centre welcomes groups both large and small offering single, twin, family and group rooms, (up to 180 guests).
London E4 7QW
+ 44 (0) 20 8498 5444
+ 44 (0) 20 1813 151
Gilwell Park is famous throughout the world for its Scouting heritage, beautiful setting and stunning range of activities.
Ideal for camping with a wide range of areas on-site to accommodate camps of all sizes from a small group to a large scape camp of 2,500+ people. With excellent facilities available, wherever you pitch your tent, you’ll never been far from toilets, showers and basins.
Choose from three purpose built modern lodges, a traditional log cabin and two Patrol cabins.
Tel: (44) 01959 572121
A beautiful wooded 86-acre site situated only 16 miles from the centre of London. Close to Biggin Hill in rural Kent, the centre is within easy access of two main railway stations at Orpington and Bromley, both a 20 minutes train ride into London.
Downe has campsites to suit all camping styles and tastes, with large open-field areas complemented by woodland sites. In addition, Downe offers a choice of three main indoor accommodation blocks available all year round except over the 2 week Christmas and New Year period.
Tel: (44) 0186 5326 2634
Set in 42 acres of beautiful woodland, Youlbury has a wide range of modern accommodation lodges, camp sites and tented villages. With excellent facilities on site, you’ll always been close to toilets and fresh running water.
Alternatively, choose from 4 accommodation lodges and a number of non-residential buildings.
Other Opportunities include
A unique opportunity to stay on a ship:
Tel: +44 (0)20 7363 0323
Chalfont St Peter
Buckinghamshire SL9 0QJ
Tel: + 44 (0)1753 882640
Fax +44 (0)1753 884108
Hertfordshire EN6 4JS
Tel: +44 (0)1707 872900
Fax: +44 (0)1707 872960
There are a number of Youth Hostel Association (YHA) hostels in London:
- Holland Park, Holland Walk, W8 0870 770 5866, Holland Park or High St Kensington tube
- Oxford Street, 14 Noel St, W1 + 0870 770 5984, Oxford Circus or Tottenham Court Road tube
- St Pancras, 79-81 Euston Rd, NW1 870 770 6044, Kings Cross & St Pancras tube & rail
- Thameside, 20 Salter Road, London, SE16 5PR, 0870 770 6010, Rotherhithe tube
- St Pauls, 36 Carter Lane, London, EC4V 5AB, 0870 770 5764
Public transport is widely available in London. Buses are frequent and reasonably .A single bus fare costs £1.50. You can pay this fare by using a Visitor Oyster card, an Oyster card, a Travelcard or with a contactless payment card. Make a journey using pay as you go on a bus, and you can make a second bus journey for free within one hour of first touching in.
The Underground (Tube) network is extensive, offering a relatively fast service with tickets cheaper during off peak hours. If you're staying for a long period of time, you may wish to use an Oyster Card. This pre-pay service offers cheaper fares on London buses, London Underground and some mainline rail services. Ask at any station for further details.
To save money and take advantage of unlimited travel on buses, the tube and trains within Greater London (Zones 1-6) buy a one day (valid from 9.30am) or weekend travelcard. You can buy the travel cards at stations and some newsagents. Click here to find the London Underground map.
London’s black cabs are metered; a yellow light over the windscreen tells you if they are available – just stick out your arm to hail one!! Minicabs are also widely available and you should book them through Minicab offices.
If you wish to extend your travels, trains are good from London for travel all over the country. Click here to check National Rail.
National Express have an extensive coach network across the country. Although slower than the train, it's less expensive. Click here to find out more about National Express.
All telephones are automatic – just dial the required number. Instructions are posted in all telephone kiosks. Most public phones take 20p, 50p, £1 coins, phone cards (available from Newsagents) and major Credit Cards. In cases of emergency, dial 999 and ask for the service you require: Police, Fire or Ambulance. Emergency Calls are free of charge. You may be able to get cheaper calls by using a UK sim card in your mobile phone. These are available from newsagents and mobile phone stockists.
Available on demand from any hospital with an Accident and Emergency Department (A & E). For cases of sudden illness or accident you should find the nearest telephone, dial 999 and ask for ambulance.
In the event of an emergency or difficulty during your visit to London, you may wish to seek the help and advice of UK Scouting. Contact the Information Centre.
Tourist Information: Britain & London Visitor Centre, I Regent Street, Piccadilly circus, London, SW1Y 4XT,
Visiting the London’s tourist attractions can be expensive but you can visit the following for free:
- The British Museum, Great Russell Street, WC1 +44 (0)20 7323 8000
- The National Gallery, Trafalgar Square+44 (0)20 7747 2885
- The Tate Gallery, Millbank, SW1 +44 20 7887 8888
- Changing of the Guards, Buckingham Palace, on alternate days starting at 11.27am for 40 minutes.
- Hyde Park - covers a distance of 2 miles from Speakers Corner and Marble Arch to Kensington Palace and from the Albert Hall to Notting Hill.
London also has many markets. Why not pay a visit to Covent Garden (open every day) and see the variety of street performers or Greenwich (open at the weekends), famous for its astronomical and maritime history. Stroll along the river and admire the outstanding architecture of the Royal Naval College (entry is free) or the Cutty Sark.
If required, it may be possible to arrange a visit to meet some local Scouts. Please remember if you are visiting in the summer, it may coincide with school holidays making a visit more difficult to organise. Please send us as much information as possible about yourselves and your visit. Please allow enough time for a suitable contact to be arranged.
UK Scouting has a tradition of staging locally organised international events every year. This is an ideal way to meet UK Scouts and enjoy a fun filled and activity packed week. Why not join us?
The Headquarters for The Scout Association and a Campsite. Scouters all over the world are still today awarded the Wood Badge for completing their formal training in accordance with the Gilwell tradition started by Baden-Powell.
You can walk around the park and enjoy the sights that include B-P’s caravan, The Tait McKenzie Statue and the Ernest Carlos paintings in The White House. Please speak with Reception to arrange a viewing or contact the Information Centre.
A small selection are available from the Campsite Providore, or alternatively via Scout Shops.
Brownsea Island is situated in Poole harbour on the South Coast of England. It's open from the beginning of April to the end of October.
On the South West corner of the island, around the site of B-P’s first experimental camp in 1907, there is some 50 acres set aside for camping.
Further information on the campsite and bookings from:
- Mrs Sheila La Riviere, 4,Troon Road, Broadstone, Dorset BH18 9BA
- 0870 743 1907
- Find out more by visiting the National Trust website.