This timeline has grown to include some Guiding milestones, because naturally Olave's life and Guiding are inextricably intertwined. If you know of any milestones which should be included on this timeline, please email me. As I find more information from various sources, this timeline changes. So please visit again.
Olave St Clair Soames is born in Stubbing Court, Chesterfield, England.
At the time of her birth, her mother was unsure if either of them would survive.
Also on this day, Robert Baden Powell celebrated his 32nd birthday.
|Robert Baden Powell runs the first Boy Scout Camp at Brownsea, England.|
The Girl Guides Association of the United Kingdom was formed for those
"Girl Scouts" who had presented themselves at the 1909 rally of Boy
Scouts in Crystal Palace, London. BP Asked his sister, Agnes, to write a
book for them, along the lines of Scouting for Boys. She became
the Association's first President.
The first Girl Guide groups start in various parts of Australia.
|1912 - Age 23|
Olave meets Robert Baden-Powell during a cruise on the Arcadian to the West Indies.
He was "The only interesting person on board!"
Girl Scouting begins in the USA, by Juliette Gordon-Lowe
BP and Olave with Juliette Gordon-Lowe
|1913 - Age 24|
January 14-March 1 Holiday Cruise with
BP - Algiers, Sahara, Carthage, Tunis, Valetta (Malta)
BPs mother dies
|Olave learns to drive, acts as BPs chauffeur - he didn't like driving|
Heather, eldest daughter, born
Olave is enrolled as a Guide.
Appointed County Commissioner for Sussex
First Commissioners' Conference, Matlock.
Olave sets up an International Committee and an Overseas Council
April - Betty born
Move to Horley after sale of Ewhurst Place after owner killed in war
Olave becomes Chief Guide of England
Olave receives the Silver Fish Award
Pax Hill purchased with a gift of $ from Olave's father
Olave forms the International Council - the forerunner of WAGGGS
Olave writes to women in Brazil, asking them to consider starting Girl Guides.
|First World Conference, Oxford|
|World Conference, Cambridge|
|Foxlease opened - first Guiders' training|
|1924 - Age 35|
The first World Camp at Foxlease, England. Forty countries
Australian states form the Federal Council of Girl Guides Associations
Thinking Day originates at the 4th World Conference in New York.
World Conference, Camp Edith Macy, USA
Three month tour of USA, visiting Girl Scouts
Six months in South Africa
World Conference, Parad, Hungary - where the World Association is
established, with offices
Lady BP visits Australia
August - Liverpool Jamboree
Pax Hill burgled, many souvenirs stolen
Another cruise to the West Indies, on the Alcantara.
Visit to the USA
July 16 1930
Presented with award Grand Dame of the British Empire by King George V
Our Chalet gifted by Mrs Storrow
Family economies introduced - staff reduced to five maids, two gardeners.
Olave's mother moves in. Shortly thereafter has a stroke and requires extensive care.
Visits to (January-June):
Olave's mother dies. Olave is left out of the will.
21st celebrations of Guiding - 5000 guides renew their promise at St Paul's Cathedral.
Olave receives GBE in Queen's Birthday Honours List.
Thinking Day Fund started
Visit to Malta
Heather makes her 'debut'
Guide/Scout Cruises begin on White Star Lines' Calgaric with 650 Guides and Scouts
Betty has emergency appendectomy
BP has prostate removal surgery, emergency blood transfusions,
Peter goes to South Africa to join the British South African Police
Olave attends 8th World Conference at Our Chalet, August
Chiefs cruise on the Adriatic to Gibraltar, France, Malta, Algiers, Lisbon.
Visit to Australia., stopping in:
Egypt, greeted by 1600 Guides, Scouts, Cubs, Brownies
Netherlands East Indies (Batavia, Samarang, Sourbaya)
BPs ill health continues. Visit Kenya to recover.
Betty marries Gervas Clay.
World Conference, Rattvik, Sweden
Visit to India (January to April) for Jamboree and country wide tour
5th World Jamboree, Holland
Gillian born to Betty in Rhodesia
Silver wedding anniversary celebrations
Visit to Kenya - BP ill again
Olave makes first TV appearance
Cruise to Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Belgium.
Visit to South Africa
World Conference, Ireland
|1939 - Age 50|
'Paxtu' completed, BPs move to Kenya in October.
Olave becomes Colony Commissioner of Kenya.
Acquire a hyrax as a house pet!
Olave decides to learn Swahili at the mission at Nyeri.
Betty's second baby born.
BP ill again.
Our Ark opened in London.
World Camp. Godollo, Hungary, where the World Flag was flown for the first time.
Outbreak of WW2
Family reunion in Kenya. Heather was in the ATS so missed the
BP ill again.
Guide International Service founded in Europe
World Conference in France - not held because of WW2
8 January. BP Dies at Paxtu, Kenya. Olave could not attend, spent
the day of the funeral weeping and walking "in agonised
grief". Olave was 51.
Thousands of letters from all over the world are sent to Kenya.
With niece Christian, goes on a 3 month tour of Africa in a truck
Depression set in on return to Nyeri.
Tours South Africa
Moves back to UK - very frightening cruise back through u-boat attacks.
No home- Pax Hill was occupied by Canadian troops. She was awarded a 'grace and favour' apartment in Hampton Court.
Birth of Heather's son Michael
Rationing bites hard. Olave entertains many ex-Scout servicemen
from all over the world.
Cycling became part of her life again to overcome crowded, limited, and slow transport.
Baden Powell Memorial fund appeal launched - Princess Margaret was the star in first fund-raising concert.
|1944 - Age 55|
Work starts to organise relief teams to assist in liberated areas
Continual touring of UK to "keep the spirits high and the ideals bright"
A V2 Rocket brings down ceiling of Olave's apartment in summer - she was touring the Midlands at the time.
Olave starts to learn French so she can go into Europe.
Lays wreaths at war memorials in towns all over France, Switzerland, Italy, Luxembourg, Belgium.
Agnes Baden Powell dies
diary (as noted in welcome booklet, visit to Australia 1958)
Olave with the Princesses of Luxembourg, and the Director of the World Bureau, in Luxembourg.
Olave begins world tour to raise funds to assist Guiding and Scouting to
resume in Europe
World Conference, Evian, France. World Badge adopted.
diary (as noted in welcome booklet, visit to Australia 1958)
World tour - 12 months!
Visits to Australia
With Brownies in the Botanical Gardens, Brisbane
All Africa Conference,
Olave with Mayor of Jaohannesburg
|1949 - Age 60|
Returns to Paxtu for solitary Christmas
Peter and family return to England to live
Visits to Malta, Italy, Greece and France.
From Olave's diary (as noted in welcome booklet, visit to Australia
|World Song adopted at World conference in England|
World Tour -
Lecture tour of USA and Canada
Hilda Baden Powell moves in with Olave, very frail following a fall.
World Conference, Dombas, Norway
Coronation Year - Olave hosts 128 Guiding and Scouting guests from
all over the world.
Appears in a TV special on Hampton Court
Lecture tour of USA - 42,000 miles in six months, 57 cities, 25 states, 158 talks!
Olave attends the World Conference in The Hague
World Brownie Badge adopted
Another tour of the USA - eight months, Canada (Niagara Falls Jamboree) 86 talks, USA 186 talks, Mexico.
|Tour of Africa - interrupted by Egypt/Israeli war|
50th Anniversary of Brownsea Camp - worldwide celebrations.
Olave presides at opening of Our Cabana, the Third World Centre
Olave visits Ghana, Sri Lanka, Australia
|Olave visits Australia, Malaya, Hong Kong, Philippines, Uruguay|
|1959 - Age 70|
Olave tours South America.
Receives 'Freedom' of the Cities of Panama and Reno!
Opens Our Cabana
Olave visits Nigeria, tours India, Pakistan
Golden Jubilee of Guiding
BP House in Kensington opens
Olave continues to host many houseguests.
US and Canada tour - Olave has a heart attack while on Price Edward Island.
Returns to England, fully recovered
Olave's brother Arthur dies
Olave's son Peter dies.
Olave visits Japan, India, Hong Kong, other parts of Asia
Our Ark moves to larger premises and is renamed Olave House.
Photo: Olave at the renaming ceremony on November 5.
Trinidad & Tobago
|1965 - Age 75|
|Olave visits Kenya|
Sangam, our fourth World Centre,
opens in Pune, India
Olave visits Philippines, to attend the Closing Ceremonies of the GSP's 25th anniversary held at the Luneta Grandstand
|Olave tours Australia.|
Attends 'Jubilations', Guiding's Diamond
Jubilee celebrations at Westminster Abbey on Thinking Day.
Jubilee celebrations in Finland, Belgium, Kenya, South Africa, USA, Denmark
|Diagnosed with diabetes, ordered to stop travelling!|
September Unveiled David Wynne's
sculpture of BP at Gilwell's International Centre.
|The Olave Rose is introduced|
|Her Autobiography, Window on my Heart, appears|
|Thinking Day Symbol introduced|
Death of Olave Baden-Powell, aged 88.
9 August Olave's ashes placed beside BP's at Paxtu.
Donations made in Olave's name were assigned to the building of the Olave Centre, in London.
|The Olave Centre opens, 31 July.|
I'm always happy to receive updated information about Lady Olave. Email me