Guiding Bermuda Celebrates 104th Anniversary

February 22, 2023

Guiding Bermuda is celebrating the 104th anniversary of Guiding in Bermuda, with its annual Thinking Day being held.

A spokesperson said, “Guiding Bermuda is celebrating its 104th anniversary of Guiding in Bermuda, joining millions of Brownies, Rainbows, Girl Guides, Senior Units, formerly Rangers, and Boy Scouts around the world.

“This year marks the first live celebration of Thinking Day since the Covid-19 pandemic. The last two years have seen virtual Zoom celebrations due to quarantines and restricted gathering protocols.

“On Sunday, February 19th, members and friends of Guiding Bermuda turned out in full force to attend a Thinking Day service at the Bermuda Cathedral, followed by a march to the flag pole, where the Guide flag was taken down. The units marched back to City Hall for picture taking, followed by a tea party at the Cathedral, where Guides and Guiders from past and present joined for fellowship amidst an array of goodies.

“The actual Thinking Day falls on Wednesday 22nd, February.

“The following is a timeline of events taking place over the past 100 years.

  • 1919 – First local Association held at the Masonic Hall
  • 1919 – Sir Robert Baden Powell signed registration form for first Guide Company, the First Hamilton Guides
  • 1919 – First Hamilton Brownie Pack was formed but not registered until 1921
  • 1920 – Guides and Scouts were inspected by H.R,H The Prince of Wales during his visit to Bermuda
  • 1921 – First Hamilton Brownie Pack was registered
  • 1924 – Island President, Lady Asser
  • 1927 – Lady Asser, along with several women, raised funds to purchase property near B.H.S. grounds, deeded to be held in Trust for Guides and Brownies
  • 1928 – Camp held at Trunk Island
  • 1929 – Ranger Cadets were formed in February
  • 1930 – Lord and Lady Baden Powell visited Bermuda for their joint birthday, February 22nd. They stayed with Mrs. James Storrow. Thinking Day was born
  • 1931 – First Excelsior Company for Black Guides
  • 1963 – Lady Baden Powell visited the island. A joint rally was held with Guides and Scouts
  • 1938 – Rally at Government House
  • 1941 – Lord Baden Powell died and was buried in Africa
  • 1943 – There were over 500 girls in uniform
  • 1946 – A new and simpler uniform was introduced, suited for Bermuda climate
  • 1949 – Queen’s Guides were formed
  • 1950 – First two girls became Queen’s Guides
  • 1950 – Salvation Army Guards became Salvation Army Guides
  • 1950 – The Girl Scouts of America formed a troupe of Girl Scouts and brownie Scouts
  • 1951 – Lady Baden Powell visited Bermuda. A rally was held at Prospect Garrison Field
  • 1953 – H.M. the Queen and Prince Phillip visited Bermuda and Guides were allotted special places on the route. Sea Rangers piped the Royal Party ashore.
  • 1956 – Land Rangers were formed from the 1st and 2nd Excelsior Guide Company
  • 1957 – The Association became incorporated by the Bermuda Girl Guide Association Act 1957
  • 1958 – Girl Guide fair held. Willing Shilling week was introduced as a fund raising effort
  • 1959 – Mrs. Dudley Butterfield became Island Commissioner
  • 1960 – 50th.Anniversary of Guiding-Rally held at Government House
  • 1963 – Lady Baden Powell visited the island. A joint Rally with Guides and Scouts was held at the Lady Asser Hut
  • 1964 – Mrs. Joan Wilkie became the island Commissioner
  • 1965 – Commencement of Flag Pole Ceremony held on Thinking Day
  • 1966 – Islandwide Thinking Day rally was held at the BAA Gymnasium
  • 1966 – Duke of Edinburgh Award Schedule sponsored by BJCC came into being
  • 1968 – A new Guiding programme was introduced with handbooks
  • 1968 – Willing Shilling Week became Willing Hands Week
  • 1969 – Jubilee Year-An International Camp was held in July with 12 countries participating
  • 1969 – A census was taken with 1000 uniformed members
  • 1970 – The Bermudiana Award was designed for presentation to leaders for special services.
  • 1970 – Mrs. Wallace Olivey became Island Commissioner
  • 1980 – Mrs. Felicity Lunn became Island Commissioner
  • 1990 – Mrs. Florenz Maxwell became Island Commissioner. She introduced Rainbow Brownies for girls 5 to 7 years old.
  • 1990 – A birdbath that had been made by Lord Baden Powell was presented to the Guide Association by a relative of Mrs. Storrow The birdbath stands in front of the building.
  • 1995 – Mrs. Lynn Cann became island Commissioner
  • 1999 – International Camp held at Southside St.David’s
  • 2001 – Mrs. Ethel Liverpool became island Commissioner
  • 2004 – Girl Guide Association name was changed to Girlguiding Bermuda
  • 2005 – Guides buried a Time capsule to mark the 85th anniversary of Guiding in Bermuda. It will be unearthed at the 125th Anniversary in 2044.
  • 2006 – Mrs. Denise Woodhouse became island Commissioner
  • 2011 – Mrs. Shirleen Tucker became island Commissioner
  • 2015 – Mrs. Karen Trott became island Commissioner
  • 2019 – Celebration of 100 years of Guiding in Bermuda

“The current Commissioner of Guiding in Bermuda is Miss. Rosalind [Wally] Simmons.

“In addition to leading Girlguiding affairs, she assists Guiders and all units on the island. She also spearheads service projects and is presently working on professional development training for incoming Guiders.

“The Guiding community continues to honour the principles of Guiding and renders service to the community while cultivating exemplary character in all girls in the movement. They are presently recruiting leaders and girls to join all units. Interested individuals can register online at

“Association Secretary is Sally Irvine at 292-0675. Monetary donations are always welcomed to assist girls in need with uniforms, and assist units in purchasing badges, camping equipment and materials and crafts. The charity number for Girlguiding Bermuda is #34.”

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