A DEDICATED scout leader has retired from the top job after five years at the helm.

Peter Bennett has finished his term as Commissioner for Greenock and District.

Mr Bennett, 64, said it was 'an honour 'to lead the district at this level and is leaving it in good shape.

He said: "I've enjoyed my role. It has been a rivilege to represent the district.

"There have been a lot of challenges but the good has outweighed the bad.

"The number of our members is continuing to rise.

"We don't need to attract young people to be wanting to join the scouts, it is getting the adults to lead the groups that is the ongoing challenge.

"We don't have waiting lists in the district and we are happy to welcome volunteers for as often or as little as possible and we will find a role for them to fit into the programme.

"We also rely on a lot of other local organisations to assist us."

Mr Bennett has been a scout leader for over 40 years.

His love of scouting began when he joined the cubs as a Greenock schoolboy .

He has always been associated with the 70th Greenock and District Scout Group and progressed through the different sections he always maintained the weekly link with his own group.

Peter has worked with hundreds of young people over the years and says it is a joy to see them develop and progress.

Mr Bennett said: "The adults who lead the Scouts aim to give young people adventure and fun and if we achieve that it is very satisfying.

"It is very rewarding to see them gain a Queen's Award or Chief Scout Award."

The scout leader lives in Gourock with his wife Ruth who is a Beaver Scout Leader and they have a son and daughter and granddaughter.

He has been all over the world with the scouts, helping to widen young people's horizons.

He said: "I've been a unit leader in the World Scout Jamboree and a leader in Scottish National trip to North America and events in Denmark."

Peter says the highlight of the last five years was seeing the scout district develop.

Mr Bennett, who enjoyed a retirement dinner at the Tontine Hotel and has been replaced by Bernie McGuinness, paid tribute to the hard work of leaders and volunteers who have assisted him.

He said: "You can't fulfil the district commissioner's role without the support of fellow leaders.

"It's a team effort."