Suzanne Squirrell (née Blunden)

Joined 1984

Ilford Nursing Cadet Division, London

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Black and white photograph of four people cooking sausages on a barbeque. They wear chefs hats and aprons. The Duke of Edinburgh is speaking to them.
HRH The Duke of Edinburgh watches as Scouts cook a record-breaking sausage over 9-miles long at the Great Party, Hyde Park, 1987 Image courtesy of the Museum of the Order of St John
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So, memorable events. The Great Party in 1987, which was the Centenary of St John, and I was one of a handful of Cadets that was asked to escort the Duchess of Gloucester around Hyde Park. Which was great because you were escorting her around, not so great because you didn’t get to see everything, but we had a little bit of time at the end to run round. Some of my friends that we knew that were in Scouting, they’d got pulled in to cook the sausage, so there was this world record that we hold for cooking the world’s longest – not us, sorry, I should say the Scouts hold because they did the cooking, it was just this giant sausage, they were just feeding people all day long with this sausage. We basically took over the whole of Hyde Park, it was huge. And it’s also where we launched Badgers, so like I said, when I say literally I was there when Bertie was born, I was, I do remember Bertie being born. Because we didn’t really have Juniors around at the time, there wasn’t really a Juniors programme when I first started, it was a little bit hit and miss, so it was really a way for St John to say actually we want to properly engage with this younger audience and have a specific programme and a specific name for them.

Excerpt © Suzanne Squirrell