A LEGEND of the local Scouting scene has taken up a new senior role as Regional Commissioner Designate.

Stephen McGrath joined the Scout movement as a Cub and worked his way through every section, achieving his Queen's Scout Award following expeditions through the Outward-Bound Trust.

Now the stalwart - who has held roles as section leader within a number of groups and had many district and executive appointments in Greenock District - is taking on a new challenge.

He said: "I am delighted to join the team that helps support Scouting for more than 4,000 young people and leaders throughout our five districts.

"There can be no doubt that the COVID-19 crisis has changed the way we Scout at the moment and I am delighted to see districts and individual groups embracing technology to keep Scouting important in the lives of young people.

"We may not be meeting just now and camps at home and abroad have been cancelled but the way we have been able to adapt with virtual camps and challenges to do at home has been inspiring."

Stephen, who was a leader with a Scout Troop in the USA while working overseas and served as a long-standing cast member of the Greenock Gang Show, succeeds John Storrie in the role after he resigned in April due to family reasons.

He said: "I want to thank both John and Stephen Allan for building strong foundations for the region on which I hope to build over the next few years.

"I look forward to engaging with leaders and young people across our region and to come and visit them when Scouting re-commences.”

Stephen, a former chief inspector with Strathclyde Police, added: "A large part of my learning in Scouting has come not just from my time as a leader but also as a parent.

"I have seen first-hand the development opportunities given to my own sons through the commitment and sacrifice of a number of leaders throughout many years, from weekly Scouting events to larger ventures such as regional expeditions at Blair Atholl and the World Scout Jamboree.

"Scouting is undoubtedly a force for good in the world and I can’t wait to play my part in supporting that however I can in West Region."

Scouts Scotland Chief Commissioner Andrew Sharkey said: "I’m delighted to welcome Stephen into the team and look forward to working with him over the coming years to further improve Scouting in West Region, building on the great work of his predecessors."