Monday, April 30, 2018

Baden Powell's Rolls Royce and Caravan from 1929.

Baden Powell was presented with a Rolls Royce and Caravan at the 1929 World Jamboree (the 3rd world jamboree) held at Arrowe Park, just outside Liverpool, the 21st Birthday of Scouting

At the Jamboree Baden Powell was honored with a number of gifts including a Baronetcy by King George V, and took the title of Lord Baden Powell of Gilwell.

Other gifts included a set of Braces and from the 50,000 Scouts of the world attending, a very special gift of a Rolls Royce Car and a touring Caravan (his old car broke down often, 2wice at the jamboree, and had to be towed home) paid for by pennies donated by scouts around the world

The presentation consisted of Rolls Royce and a Eccles Caravan as well as a check and a portrait by David Jagger.

The Car got the nickname of Jam Roll because it was a Rolls Royce presented at the jamboree and the caravan was called Eccles. Eccles was the name of the caravan manufacturer, but an Eccles is also a type of fruit filled pastry.

Jam Roll is a 20 horse power Rolls Royce, chassis number GVO-40, it was one of the last 20hp chassis to be made. The car was fitted with a custom made 'D' back limousine body that was made by Page and Hunt, it was one of only a few made by the coach builders for Rolls Royce, and it was the last body they made before changing their name to Abbott

The order for Jam Roll was a rush order with the chassis card marked "Urgent 6/8 weeks" The order was placed on the 21 June 1929 and the completed chassis delivered to Page and Hunt on the 19 July. Further noted on the Chassis card state "if this car is not complete by the date of the jamboree R-R to loan car for one day for this occasion" The car was presented to BP on the 10 august 1929 only 50 days after R-R received the order.

A unique feature of Jam Roll is the radiator mascot rather than having the typical "Sprit of Ecstasy" (The Flying Lady) that takes pride of place on a Rolls Royce radiator, Jam Roll had a custom-designed mascot that incorporates the Scout arrowhead and Scout motto "Be Prepared"

Lady Baden Powell sold Jam Roll in 1945 and it passed through nine owners when Ben Grew brought the car in 1986 with 53,000 miles.

For a look at how much work was needed to get it running after so many collectors had neglected it (shame on them)

Of the 294 men and women selected to be astronauts since 1959 to 2005, more than 180 have been Scouts and of the 27 men to travel to the moon on the Apollo 9 through Apollo 17 missions, 24 were Scouts, including 11 of the 12 men who physically walked on the moon's surface, and all three members of the crew of Apollo 13 misson, that had it's oxygen tank expload meaning the landing misson had to be aborted.


  1. What Boy Scouts? Today they became "Scouts BSA" No longer the Boy Scouts. Baden Powell must be vomiting in his grave. The Rolls and it's coach should be painted the color of ashen.

    1. It's a damn shame... let it either perish from a lack of interest, or whatever, but don't mess with what was once an icon of simple instruction in skills and challenges that built incredible experiences for boys. All the politically charged nonsense of the past 30 or so years has messed with what was once simple, and straightforward.
      I was a tenderfoot before our troop dissolved due to lack of adult interest in keeping the scouts active in my neck of the woods. I've since read "Scouting on Two Continents" by by Frederick Russell Burnham, and the "Sons of Daniel Boone" by Dan Beard. I recommend both highly.
      Damn shame that the girl scouts never managed to do right by girls, and fulfill their mission by giving girls and women something as good or better.