Irish Scout Jamboree

From Maynooth Scouts Heritage


Year Jamboree Location Dates Camp Chief Notes
1977 Jamborora Mount Melleray, Co. Waterford 26 July – 4 August 12,000 to 20,000 Celebrating the Golden jubilee of the Catholic Boy Scouts of Ireland. Scouts from Ireland, Italy, Norway, France and the US attended the camp. The Girl Guides were also represented. The theme for the camp was Irish history, with the subcamps being named after seven Irish kingdoms: Aileach, Caiseal, Cruachan, Dal Riada, Deise, Eamhain Macha, and Tara. The Chieftains and Horslips played at the camp.
1982 Lakelands Co. Fermanagh This was the largest Scouting event to be hosted by Fermanagh Scouts.
1985 Portumna Co. Galway 30 July – 8 August 10,000 To celebrate International Youth Year the Scout Association of Ireland hosted the event with help from the Catholic Boy Scouts of Ireland, and the Scout Association of Northern Ireland. President Patrick Hillery opened the jamboree and 23 different countries were represented. Torrential rain fell during the summer which accounted for extremely muddy conditions.
1989 Gosford Co. Armagh 25 July – 4 August Wilson Lambe 3,000 The Scout Association of Northern Ireland hosted this jamboree with help from the Catholic Boy Scouts of Ireland and the Scout Association of Ireland. 24 countries were represented including Japan, Canada and the US. The Prince Edward, Duke of Kent visited the site.
1993 Ballyfin Co. Laois 27 July – 5 August Kiernan Gildea 7,000 Scouting Ireland CSI hosted this jamboree with help from the Scout Association of Ireland and Scout Association of Northern Ireland. Scouts from Ireland, Australia, Canada and 15 European countries attended. Officially opened by President Mary Robinson with Patrick Mayhew.
2008 Jamboree 2008 Punchestown, Co. Kildare 2–10 August Christy McCann 12,500 Scouting Ireland's first international Jamboree, celebrating 100 years of Scouting in Ireland. Scouts from Ireland, Canada, the US, Europe, Aisa and Australia attended. The jamboree was curtailed due to adverse weather conditions on 9 August, and no closing ceremony was held.

Ballyfin '93[edit]

Ballyfin '93 was an Irish Scouting Jamboree which took place in the grounds of Ballyfin College, Co. Laois, between 27 July and 5 August 1993.<ref name="Maynooth">Template:Cite news</ref> It was hosted by the Catholic Boy Scouts of Ireland, with the support and assistance of Scouting Ireland SAI and the Scout Association in Northern Ireland (a branch of the Scout Association in the UK). It was the third of four such jamborees rotated among the three Scout Associations in Ireland. Portumna '85, and Gosford '89 preceded it, while it was followed by Lough Dan '97. The jamboree song "The Spirit Lives On" was a version of that used for the 15th World Scout Jamboree in Canada in 1983. The campsite was split into seven subcamps for Scout Troops, Cub Scouts and staff, each named after an Irish Lake/Lough:

  • Cara, (Lone-Patrols). Sub-Camp Chief: Dominic Byrne, CBSI
  • Conn, Sub-Camp Chief: Brian Meyers, SI SAI
  • Corrib, Sub-Camp Chief: Fra Cassidy, CBSI
  • Derg, Sub-Camp Chief: Declan McCann, SI SAI
  • Eske,Sub-Camp Chief: Barbara Scoutt, SANI
  • Ouler, Sub-Camp Chief: Gerry Glynn, CBSI
  • Strangford, Sub-Camp Chief: Dermot McCurdy, SANI.
  • Lein (Staff). Sub-Camp Chief: Myles O'Brien, SI SAI

One of the highlights of the jamboree was a charity fundraising day in aid of UNICEF. As it took place on visitors' day, troops and staff set up stalls to raise money by selling items of food, or with novelty competitions.

Punchestown 2008[edit]

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Jamboree 2008 was Scouting Ireland's first international Jamboree that was held from 2 until 10 August 2008. It took place on the grounds of the Punchestown Racecourse, County Kildare, Ireland. The aim of the Jamboree was to celebrate one hundred years of Scouting in Ireland. Over 12,000 Irish and overseas Scouts attended.<ref name='irish times 1'>Template:Cite news</ref> The camp chief for Jamboree 2008 was Christy McCann.<ref name='herald 1'>Template:Cite news</ref> The Jamboree was curtailed due to adverse weather conditions on the ninth of August, and no closing ceremony was held. Subcamps were evacuated at speed, with many foreign or long distance troop being forced to shelter in the Punchestown Racecourse bar.

Punchestown Racecourse was chosen to host the Jamboree, having previously hosted the Creamfields, Witnness and Oxegen music festivals, and as such has often been used as a campsite for large numbers, however never for a duration of 10 days.

The jamboree opened with a bang on the second, with the opening ceremony being held using the same stage as the World Jamboree 2007. The celebrations team kept everyone thoroughly entertained until the arrival of Camp Chief Christy McCann who travelled to the opening ceremony in a coast guard helicopter. The flags of the attending countries were raised and the ceremony finished with a fireworks display.

Jamboree 2008 had its very own official radio station, called "Jam FM". The station broadcast on 95.9 FM and online to Local Kildare and west Wicklow areas via Three Rock Mountain. The format of the station was mainly commercial pop/rock and indie and with some talk. The station was headed by Robbie Daly (Station Manager), David Kelleher and Denzil Lacey (Assistant Station Managers). Presenters included, Stephen Daly of FM104 and Dublin's Q102.

File:Jamboree subcamp badge pin.jpg
A full set of Subcamp badges accompanied by a full set of Subcamp pins forming a diamond

The campsite is split into a total of nine subcamps; six of these subcamps have been allocated to attending Scout groups and cub/macoimh packs. One subcamp has been allocated to Venture groups. One subcamp has been allocated to the families of staff. And the final subcamp has been allocated to Staff members.<ref>"Jam...", The pre-Jamboree Newsletter, Issue 2</ref>

Each subcamp is named after Irish geographical or heritage sites. Subcamp chiefs are also listed:
File:Jamboree element.jpg
The six elements logos that were placed all over the campsite and were printed on staff T-shirts, many sub-camps did not have this facility

The Beaver Day and Visitors Day were canceled due to torrential rain and flooding.<ref name='Leinster Leader'>Template:Cite news</ref>

File:Camp Chief Challenge Pin.JPG
Camp Chief Challenge Pin

The Camp Chief Challenge was the most popular activity to take part in. This was a challenge set by the Camp Chief Christy McCann. It included doing activities in order to collect points. Anyone that managed to get 100 points or more was able to get the Camp Chief Challenge Pin. The easiest tasks were worth 5 points like getting the Camp Chief's signature, attending a Scouts' Own or visiting an information stand in the village. The hardest task, which was worth 20 points, was to have a meal with another troop/pack/unit.


A Beaver and Cub Scout event over a long holiday weekend in June. Cub Scouts camp over-night for 3 nights and Beaver Scouts join, initially for the last night, but since 2012 for 2 last nights.

  • JamÓige 2009: 29 May – 1 June. 4,250 attended in Dalgan Park, Co. Meath. Deirdre Butler was camp chief.<ref name="annualreport09">Template:Citation</ref>
  • JamÓige 2012: 1–4 June. 4,600<ref name="annualreport12">Template:Citation</ref> attended in Ardgillian Castle, Co. Dublin. David Kessie was camp chief.<ref name="cavancubs">Template:Cite web</ref>
  • JamÓige 2016: 3–6 June. 4,500<ref name="JamÓigeFacebook">Template:Cite web</ref> attended in Pallaskenry, Co. Limerick. Stephen Halpin was camp chief.<ref name="JamNuacht">Template:Cite web</ref>

Future events[edit]

  • 2018: Jambo-Rí '18.<ref name="SIJ18">Template:Cite web</ref> In 2014, Scouting Ireland's National Management Committee announced the intention to hold a jamboree in 2018, in preparation for hosting the World Scout Moot in 2021.<ref name="futureSIcamps">Template:Cite web</ref> The name of the jamboree is a play on the word Template:Lang-ga which means high king in Irish. Kiernan Gildea is camp chief and will take place over 9 days in July 2018 at Stradbally Hall near Portlaoise in the midlands of Ireland.<ref name="SIJ18a">Template:Cite web</ref>
  • 2020: JamÓige 2020.<ref name="futureSIcamps"/>
  • 2021: World Scout Moot hosted by Scouting Ireland.<ref name="futureSIcamps"/>
  • 2022: Jamboree/National Campsite Event.<ref name="futureSIcamps"/>