SCOUTS and Girl Guides took to the streets of Dorset in glorious sunshine on Sunday for their annual St George’s Day parades.

Hundreds of Scouts took part with events taking place across Bournemouth, Poole, Christchurch, Wimborne and Wareham in honour of St George, the patron saint of England and of Scouts worldwide.

Bournemouth’s event was the first to take place at 10am with Scouts and their leaders setting off from the clifftop behind the BIC with some youngsters proudly carrying shields featuring the red and white St George’s Cross as they went.

They then made their way through Pier Approach and Bournemouth’s Lower Gardens before congregating in front of the bandstand where awards were handed out.

Poole’s parade at 2pm saw around 600 Scouts take part in the event on Poole Quay. They made their way down the Quay and past a bronze statue of Lord Baden-Powell, the founder of the scouting movement.

Robert Baden Powell established the first scout camp on Brownsea Island in August 1907 with the sculpture on Poole Quay unveiled in 2008.

A ceremony then took place at the old lifeboat station where Scouts renewed their Scout Promise.

Roger Thresh, Poole’s Assistant District Commissioner, said: “It certainly was buzzing. There was a great environment and the little kids were waving their St George’s flags.

“Around 600 Scouts and leaders took part in the event, which is half of the district.

“It’s our biggest event out in the open and in public.

“We’ve seen growth in our district in the last five years.

“One lady came up to me and she said: ‘they looked really smart and had their shoes polished and looked very smart’, which was nice.

“People like to see the Scouts parade and so do their parents and grandparents and afterwards a lot of the children went off to get ice cream so it’s been really nice.”

Christchurch's event saw around 700 Scouts, Guides and leaders pack into the Priory after parading through the town’s streets.

The service, which was based on the World Scout Badge, was organised by Burton Scouts under their role of ‘duty group’.

Brett Jones, the District Commissioner for Scouting in Christchurch, said: “It went brilliantly, we filled the Priory with around 700 Scouts and leaders.”

He added: “When the sun is shining and you’ve got all the young people in front of you, it’s nice.”

During the service, awards were handed out to Explorer Scouts by the Mayor of Christchurch along with one young leader belt which was given to Nicola Penny.

A Silver Duke of Edinburgh Award was presented to Jack Ogden who also received the Chief Scout’s Diamond Award.

Matthew Nagel-Smith and Benjamin Nagel- Smith each received a Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award, while Abigail Root and Aiden Rosten-White were awarded the Chief Scout’s Platinum Award.

Brett said: “We’ve got about 100 Explorers in the Scouts in Christchurch and we gave out a few awards today. It was a special day and the youngsters get to see what the older ones can achieve.”