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About the Boys’ Brigade

The Boys’ Brigade is the oldest uniformed youth organisation in the world and provides a balanced programme of activities for children and young people from 5 to 18 years old, many of whom would otherwise have no connection with the Church.

Where we came from

The Boys’ Brigade was founded in Glasgow on 4th October 1883 by Sir William Alexander Smith. From this one Company formed in Scotland, the BB has grown into a worldwide movement having worked with millions of children and young people for over a century and in 2008 we celebrated our 125th Anniversary.

A full and detailed history of The Boys’ Brigade called First For Boys written by Donald M. McFarlan can be found on the national Boys’ Brigade website.

What we do today

To learn more about the activities and adventures we offer today click on the relevant section for you or your childs’ age group from the selection below.


AGES: 5 - 8

Leader: Michael Payne


AGES: 8 - 11

Leader: Iain Strachan


AGES: 11 - 15

Leader: Phil Lowles


AGES: 15 - 18

Leader: Barry Precey

Our Object

The Object of The Boys’ Brigade is:

“The advancement of Christ’s kingdom among Boys and the promotion of habits of Obedience, Reverence, Discipline, Self-respect and all that tends towards a true Christian manliness.”

Our Founder Sir William Alexander Smith, included in our Object “The Promotion of habits of Obedience, Reverence, Discipline, Self-Respect and all that tends towards a true Christian manliness” and that has not been changed.

What has changed is how we go about promoting that object. We recognise that the influences surrounding our young people are not always helpful and that too many lose control at great cost to themselves, their families and the community. The answer is to catch the energy and enthusiasm of youth and to channel it purposefully.

Our Motto & Emblem

Our emblem is an anchor. The Boys’ Brigade Motto is:

“Sure & Steadfast”

The motto is taken from the Bible,
the book of Hebrews, Chapter 6, Verse 19.

Company History

The history of 3rd Basingstoke Boys’ Brigade

 Maybe some of you reading this remember the history because you were part of it or maybe you are in one of the photographs in our Photo Gallery. Please click this link to visit our Ex-Members page.

This is a history of 3rd Basingstoke Boys’ Brigade Company from its foundation in 1965 right up to the present day.


Due to privacy restrictions, this history will not contain the names of boys who were members (unless they went on to become officers) and will therefore focus on the Officers who kept the company running and the important events which shaped the course of our history.

The photographs included here are taken from our company archives and a complete collection of all our full-size photographs can be found in our Photo Gallery. In accordance with our policy, there are no pictures of individual boys, however, there are plenty of group shots in addition to pictures of our leaders. Maybe there are some faces you recognise because you were a member of the 3rd in the past. Ex-Members are encouraged to view the Ex-Members page and contact us with stories of their time at the 3rd.

First off please accept our apologies if any detail is incorrect in this history. The dates were taken from the very confusing and occasionally incomplete archives of the company. We have made every effort to get the details correct and include every officer throughout our history. If you do spot anything which is incorrect or something which should have been included then please contact us.

Note on ranks: W/O = Warrant Officer. Lt. = Lieutenant.

Key Dates

1854 – William Alexander Smith born (27th October)
1883 – BB Founded in Glasgow (4th October)
1886 – First BB Camp (Tignabruaich)
1908 – Scout Movement Formed (by Baden Powell, developed from the Boys’ Brigade)
1909 – William Alexander Smith knighted (July)
1914 – Sir William Alexander Smith died (10th May)
1933 – Jubilee Celebrations
1955 – St Andrews’ Church built
1964 – 2nd Basingstoke Girls’ Brigade founded (December)
1965 – 3rd Basingstoke Life Boys’ founded (January)
1966 – 3rd Basingstoke Boys’ Brigade founded
1983 – BB Centenary Celebrations
1993 – 2nd Basingstoke Girls’ Brigade closes (February)
1993 – Junior Section 75th Anniversary (previously called ‘Life Boys’)
2006 – 40th Anniversary celebration of 3rd Basingstoke
2008 – 125th Anniversary of The Boys’ Brigade
2009 – 3rd Basingstoke temporarily move to Trinity Church (September)
2011 – St. Andrews’ Church is demolished and construction of the new church begins
2012 – Construction of the brand new St. Andrews’ Church is completed
2012 – 3rd Basingstoke return to the brand new St. Andrews’ Church (November)

Company Captains



Dates from/to

Peter Waite 1965 — 1967
Brian Hands 1967 — 1969
Robert Crouden 1969 — 1986
Martyn Waters 1986 — 1987
Walter Brown 1987 — 1991
Adrian Fuller 1991 — 1993
Trevor Barnes 1993 — 1996
Barry Precey 1996 — 2007
Theresa Strachan 2007 — current
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The object of the Boys Brigade is: "The advancement of Christ's kingdom among boys and the promotion of habits of obedience, reverence, discipline, self-respect, and all that tends towards a true Christian manliness"

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