A Clarion Scout campsite in the countryside, early 20th century.
The Clarion Scouts were formed in 1894 as an offshoot of the Clarion Cycling Club. Both organisations were inspired by the Clarion newspaper, a socialist weekly set up in 1891 by the Manchester-based journalist and socialist Robert Blatchford. Clarion Scouts were young socialist pioneers who cycled around cities and surrounding areas seeking to convert people to socialism. By 1896 the organisation claimed to have 120 clubs across Britain with 7,000 members.
Camping suited the ethos of the Clarion Scouts, whose members combined an enthusiasm for socialism with a love of the outdoors. In many parts of the country, the cyclists could stay in Clarion Youth Houses, forerunners of Youth Hostels.
Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Museums
bicycles, campers, camping, Clarion Cycling Club, Clarion Scouts, Clarion Youth Houses, cycling, cycling clubs, political activists, propaganda, ramblers, rambling, socialism, socialists, tents, youth hostels