Alastair appointed WSJ Unit Leader of Unit 1

We’re delighted to announce that Alastair Hammond has been appointed to be the Unit Leader for our World Jamboree Unit (Unit 1) for the 2023 World Jamboree in South Korea.

Alastair Hammond (Colonel Hathi) is the Explorer Scout Leader and DGSL for 1st Prague Scouts (BSO Northern Europe District).  He joined Scouts as a Cub in 1st Burwash Scouts, East Sussex.  Just down the road was Bateman’s, Rudyard Kipling’s home, where he took part in a Blue Peter special to celebrate 60 years of Cub Scouts – dressed in period cub uniform (including garters)!  Scouting has moved on a lot since then! 


Alastair also attended Poacher as a Patrol Leader and credits the experience as key in his successful selection to join the Royal Navy as a cadet aged 15.  He has attended Intercamp in the Netherlands, and will be a BSO Explorer Leader at Kent International Jamboree (KIJ) next summer.


As a parent of two Scouts, Alastair joined 1st Prague four years ago as Chairman before championing 1st Prague to become an International DofE centre.  He was volunteered to start 1st Prague Explorer Unit – the Bohemians – and since then he has been the Explorer Leader and DofE Manager, taking the Bohemians rafting and canyoning in Austria; canoeing, climbing, skiing and expeditioning in the Czech Republic and enjoying many other adventurous activities with the Group.  His favourite camping equipment at the moment is his hammock and fan-assisted wood burning stove – which also charges a mobile phone (for emergencies only)! 


Away from Scouts, Alastair spent nine years in the Royal Navy as a Seaman Officer, where he was fortunate to explore every ocean and every continent, the highlight being the Orient ’92 deployment where he visited Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines. This was followed by a career based in London in management consultancy.  Alastair moved to Prague fifteen years ago to set up a business investing in and building renewable energy projects across central and south eastern Europe. Scouting enables him to enjoy his passion for the environment and countryside with getting out there and actually exploring and living in it.  


Committed to youth-led scouting, Alastair is excited and honoured to lead Unit 1 to the 25th WSJ in SaeManGeum, South Korea. Alastair says: “if you are a Scout or Explorer aged 12 to 16, dream of seeing the world, meeting many amazing people and making a difference to others, experiencing adventures and exploring new cultures, all the while developing even more #skillsforlife, watch out for announcements and get ready to apply to be part of the BSO Unit going to the World Scout Jamboree. A life-changing opportunity awaits everyone. This is the chance of a lifetime that only comes around once. Grab your chance, live your dreams, Dream Wild!”

Area Commissioner Nathan Prince said, I am delighted that following a robust selection process, Alastair Hammond has been appointed as our next Unit Leader (UL) for the 25th World Scout Jamboree (WSJ) in South Korea. This role comes with a great deal of responsibility and is one of the few Area roles where adults have direct contact with young people. Alastair will be responsible for the wellbeing, safety and operation of the Unit. This process starts immediately with the recruitment of the Assistant ULs (AUL) and then young people. He will then be responsible for bringing the unit together, training, liaising with the contingent team, mentoring, budgeting, finance and a myriad of tasks before the actual WSJ happens. He will continue this role until he leads the process to recruit a new UL for the 2027 WSJ. This is one of the most challenging and fulfilling roles you can do in Scouting but with a solid background in both Scouting and within various managerial roles, including for the Royal Navy, I think Alastair is the very best person to lead our WSJ unit. I am really excited to see the future adventures of our unit and wish Alastair the very best of luck.