For the Girl Guides of London and the South East, the Lord Mayor's Show is not just a big day out but the culmination of months of hard work. Everyone you see in their float has been studying and working for their Lord Mayor's Show badge.
The badge covers London history through traditional stories and games, quizzes and handicrafts, and includes an inspirational 'you can do it' section in which the girls study positive role models including the two female Lord Mayors of London. It's not an easy badge, but if your children (or you) would like to have a go here's a very small sample of the work they have to do:
- Find out who Gog and Magog are. Make papier-mâché statues or create a short mime or play of the story of King Brutus and Gog and Magog.
Find the answers to these London questions:
- Where can you whisper and be heard a long way away?
- What does the great bell of Bow say?
- Name a church other than St Paul's Cathedral that was designed by Sir Christopher Wren
- Dick Whittington was a Mercer. What would he have sold to the King?
- Find a patch of Roman London like the ruined amphitheatre under the Guildhall Art Gallery or the Billingsgate Roman House and Baths and learn what used to happen there.
- Look up at the Monument to the Great Fire of London, or even climb its 311 steps.
- Learn more about Helen Sharman, former girl guide, Mars bar scientist and the first British astronaut when she was only 27 years old.
- Find out about the two female Lord Mayors, Mary Donaldson and Fiona Woolf.
- Play a traditional London playground game like Oranges and Lemons or Duck Duck Goose.
The Guides are represented by a different troop every year and in 2017 it will be Surrey East. They have been preparing for months:
You can’t miss us. Not only will we be exuding awesomeness, but we are not alone! Months of hard work has ensured we will be parading alongside a crimson, waving lion - the county’s symbol. The lion originally forms the Surrey’s coat of arms, and while he gives us a sense of past and location, it also symbolises courage: a trait we should all champion in modern society. We do it to raise awareness of Girlguiding, to not only provide young women with an exciting platform to challenge themselves and benefit their community, but to ensure no girl thinks she is not ‘good enough’ and promote a positive, female image.Amy Lovell, organiser for Girl Guides Surrey East
Amy added that the Lord Mayor's Show float is about "what Girlguiding stand for; growth, confidence, community, resilience and girl power (Spice Girls, we still love you)."
The Girl Guides have been an integral part of the Lord Mayor's Show for many years because at the lunch break between outward and return processions they also distribute packed lunches to all of its 6500 participants. We would like to thank them for their years of support and wish them well in the 2017 Show.
You can follow the girls' preparations on twitter at @GGSurreyEast.