by John Ineson
You will see on the outer cover of this Bulletin that we now have our very own SGSC Web-site. Our thanks go to Randall Frank, our Webmaster who has most generously financed the registration of our name and the first year's costs. We hope that this site www.sgsc.org.uk will bring us new members, and although it is early days, it already has a fair amount of information especially regarding new issues. As some of the contents are only available to members of SGSC, you will need to know the User Name and Password. As the Chairman's Notes will be placed on the site in due course these details appear elsewhere in the Bulletin.
Earlier this year a worldwide chat of IFSCO members was held on the Internet. For those who do not understand what a "chat" is, it is a site that has been organised by Reinhard Klose of Germany where we all agree to be on line at the same time GMT. Each person has a place to write what he or she wishes to say, and once he or she have finished, they press the appropriate button and it instantly appears on everybody else's screen. It continues through the various subjects, and this time lasted about an hour. The wonders of modern technology! Each club is allowed up to three members to take part and a number of issues were discussed including the next Euro-Scout meeting, which is being held in Prague in October 2004. We now have eleven members of IFSCO and I was interested to hear that a Scout Stamp Club has recently been started in Slovenia, which the Austrian Club StPS has been supporting.
Writing about Austria, I hear that the StPS club is celebrating its 25th Anniversary with an Scout Stamp exhibition being held in conjunction with "Jugend Phila Graz 03" which is a very large stamp exhibition for youth collectors. This will be held from September 25th - 28th this year at the Kulturzentrum Raiffeisenhoif in Graz in southern Austria.
Please do not forget our A.G.M. which is being held at the North Richmond Scout Headquarters, Old Deer Park, Richmond on Saturday 26th April at 2:30 pm. This meeting gives all members a chance to air their thoughts on the running of the club. If you would like to be considered for the committee, please contact the Editor or myself. As usual the election of officers will take place at this meeting.
Although over the years I had seen the occasional cover from the Scout Postal service in the Netherlands during 1944/45, I was surprised to see so many of these offered for sale in Holland earlier this year. These were previously in the collection of the late Wim Six and consisted of virtually every example of the postmarks known to exist. During the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands, Scouting was banned but upon the liberation of the country Scouts reappeared everywhere. Among others, they played an important role by carrying mail and the two oldest known covers date from the winter of 1944/45. One of these (illustrated) is a cover with a regular London cancellation dated 22nd December 1944. Having been stamped on the back with the Field Post Office no. 85 cancel, it is assumed that this gives the date of arrival at Nijmegen in the liberated part of the country. A full account of these issues together with illustrations appeared in the SOSSI Journals during April and May 1977.