1933 – Jubilee

BB Jubilee celebrations 8th to 11th September 1933 in Glasgow.

The celebrations took place in a couple of locations over the weekend in Glasgow. Not just to mark the 50th anniversary of the founding of the first Boys’ Brigade company by Sir William Alexander Smith but also a celebration of the successful approach adopted by the Founder in keeping the attention and enthusiasm of the Boys  between leaving Sunday School and when they re-joined the church congregation as adults.

The Founder had found a way to keep the interests of ‘the Boy’ and to keep a strong connection with the Church alive.

The 1st Glasgow Company in their first year had 30 Boys, by 1898 the Brigade had grown to 468 Companies, helped spread by Boys from the early Companies, enthused by the movement and promoting the BB to the Churches they had later moved to. Other church denominations e.g. Catholic, Jewish and Church of England, saw the advantages to their own congregations in adopting a youth movement of their own based on the non denominational BB ideals,  By 1932, according to records, there were 1518 BB Companies throughout the world having a total of 85,033 boy members.

This milestone in the age and success of the BB led to the Jubilee Celebrations being organised,  The Glasgow Battalion officers, current and retired, acted as hosts and helpers assisting the visitors to ensure no-one missed any events.

– at Officer level – a weekend gathering involving the Glasgow Authority’s participation in hosting events,

Friday – a civic reception for visiting officers, Bus tours around the city of Glasgow.

Saturday – as well as there being the Jubilee Meeting of the  Brigade Council, a massed Review and Display was held at the Queens Park recreation field – Reviewed by H.R.H. Prince George, the March Past of the massed Pipe and Brass Bands and seventeen Batallions, around 30,000 Officers and Boys strong, took 45minutes. Later this was followed by a Dinner and social Jubilee gathering at the St Andrews Hall, Glasgow. A sealed casket,  containing a message from the Boys of 1933 to those of 1983 and mementos of the Jubilee was presented to the gathering to be kept until opened in 1983 at the centenary.

Sunday – a great Church Parade and open-air Service or  ‘Conventicle’ of Thanksgiving.

Monday – excursions by special steamers for officers and boys on the Firth of Clyde.

– at Boys level – a large International Camp was organised at Dechmont near Cambuslang. with invites to 2 Boys to represent every BB company in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. There were representatives from the BB abroad.  The Boys took part in the Saturday Review, Sunday’s Church Parade and the excursions to the Kyles of Bute passing Tighnabruaich where the first BB camp took place.

Media Files



1933 Commemorative Biscuit tin

This Boys’ Brigade Commemorative biscuit tin (with biscuits) was available throughout 1933 to commemorate the Jubilee of The Boys’ Brigade. The tin was designed so that once empty, it could be used to store a BB pill-box cap, belt and haversack.

The Boys’ Brigade Archive Collection.

Jubilee Links

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