Brian Smith, the Aldington poet, has been moved to write a poem about the old Legion and Scout Hut building which is no more – reduced to rubble and awaiting development. He has fond memories of the building, firstly when he attended meetings there as a Cub and a Scout, and then, as an adult, when it had been taken over by the British Legion, going with his father for a drink at the club.
* * * * *
Boy Scouts and Old Soldiers
The Legion's gone, how strange it looks
To see that empty space.
A piece of Badsey's history swept away,
For flats to take its place.
You wouldn't say that it was pretty,
With bits added over the years.
But the Legion men who founded the club
Built it with their sweat and tears.
The Old School, lost within its core,
Was the Badsey Scouts HQ.
Many will have memories of that time,
And I for one still do.
After it became the Legion Club,
With Gerald and Vera behind the bar,
I went with Dad on a Sunday lunchtime ,
To hear the yarns and to share a jar.
Now the members of our little gang
Have all sadly passed away,
Only I, the youngest of them all
Live to fight another day.
Yes, the Legion's gone, how sad it is,
To see that place has gone,
But in the minds of many people,
All the memories will live on.
Brian Smith, November 2023