Sheffield Scout Archives




Canon Ernest Rawlins

"Scouting in Sheffield and South Yorkshire has lost a stalwart champion and a dear friend, through the death in his 90th year, of Canon Rawlins.

He was in Holy Orders for nearly 60 years, and all of them in the Diocese of Sheffield - Curate at Walkley and New Edlington; Vicar at Norton Lees, Mexborough and Goole; and finally, Canon of Sheffield Cathedral. And wherever he went, he took with him his dedicated enthusiasm for the Scout Movement.

As soon as he arrived at St Mary's, Walkley, his first curacy, in 1922, he started a Scout Troop - the 147th - and next year a Cub Pack, and was both Scoutmaster and Cubmaster! In 1925, he left Sheffield for four years, and then returned as Vicar of St Paul's, Norton Lees. Here he was hailed with delight by the Scouts - one of whom, is recorded as saying to his friend (later to become the Dean of Manchester!)— "We've got a wonderful new Vicar at our Church - he takes us hiking in Derbyshire". Here is evidence of one of his greatest gifts - a care and love for young people, illustrated in so many ways - innumerable Scout Camps; the youth centre at Hollowford, and his delightful sense of humour and twinkling eye.

In 1937, he left Norton Lees for Mexborough. But he maintained his warm-hearted connection with the 46th, whom he invited at regular intervals to week-end camps with the Scouts of his Mexborough Parish. After eight happy years at Mexborough, he became Vicar of Goole, where - to his disappointment - he couldn't become GSM of the Parish Church Group, as the Church Lads Brigade was already in possession! So he became Assistant County Commissioner for West Yorkshire, and encouraged Scouting widely in the area. It was, too, at Goole that he introduced one of his curates to the challenge of Scouting - so that Rev Charles Sunderland had a great Scouting career before him when he left Goole for Sheffield!

When Ernest Rawlins retired as Vicar of Goole, he returned to Sheffield, to a very active semi-retirement as Canon of Sheffield Cathedral. In Sheffield, he continued his devoted service to Scouting - this time in the Rivelin District, with his old friend, 'Wiggles' Smith. He became a member of the Rivelin Executive, and later President. He was a faithful member of the City Executive (despite his increasing arthritis) until his last illness

From a Tribute in Scout News