History of the region.

In 1971 the area of North East England comprised of the following counties;

Durham ,Northumberland, North Lincolnshire, Sheffield, New Teeside, York City, York Central, Yorkshire North Riding, Yorkshire West Riding North West, Yorkshire West Riding South and Yorkshire East Riding.

A News Release was issued from The Girl Guides Association stating the following;

New Methods of Administration For the Girl Guide Movement in England

Owing to the great increase in numbers over the last years, England has become too big for direct administration. In future, from January 1 1971                                                                

England will be divided into six regions, with a Chief Commissioner at the head of each, with the same standing and responsibilities as those of Scotland, Wales and Ulster, and all to be members of the Executive Committee of the Council of the Girl Guides Association.

Each Region will have an office, with appropriate staff, and a team of advisers serving the needs of the Counties in the Region. County Commissioners, Division and District Commissioners, will remain unaltered.

The focal point for all nine Regions of the United Kingdom and their staffs will be the Chief commissioner of the Girl Guides Association (at present Mrs. Derek Parker Bowles) and commonwealth headquarters.

The Association envisages these changes will bring a closer and better service to all members of the Movement.

The present membership of the movement in the U.K. numbers 744,509   North East England 91,813 members                                                               

Mrs Owthwaite having held the position as representative for the North East, with a unanimous decision of all the nominating County Commissioners was appointed Chief Commissioner for N.E.E.

In 1973/4 called ‘the years of the boundaries’ due to the re-organisation of local government boundaries, 15 counties were created from the previous 11 areas.

The counties were as such;

  1. Northumberland
  2. Newcastle
  3. North Tyneside
  4. Durham
  5. Cleveland
  6. North Yorkshire North East
  7. North Yorkshire West
  8. North Yorkshire South
  9. Humberside North
  10. Lincolnshire North
  11. West Yorkshire North
  12. West Yorkshire South
  13. Leeds
  14. South Yorkshire
  15. Sheffield

In 1977 West Yorkshire North divided into West Yorkshire North and West Yorkshire West, taking the number of counties up to 16. In 1989 Durham county divided into Durham North and Durham South making 17 Counties and in 1996 Humberside North was renamed East Yorkshire.

To date 2024 we still have 17 Counties.


1973-1978 The Countess of Scarbrough

1978-1986 Deda Outhwaite

1986-1991 Greta Fowler

1991-1996 Elizabeth Hull

1996-2000 Julia Guest

2000-2005 Jane Garside

2005-2014 Brenda Parke

2014-2022 Pat Cliffe

2022- Angie Goddard

Chief commissioners

1971-1977 Deda Outhwaite – read Deda’s blog here

1977-1984 Greta Fowler

1984-1989 Jane Garside

1989-1994 Pat Cliffe

1994-1999 Jenny Leach

1999-2004 Angie Goddard

2004-2009 Jo Taylor

2009-2014 Hilary Cooper

2014-2019 Alison Gordon

2016-2019 Jill Webb

2019-2024 Linda Grant

2024 – Wendy Howard

The three crowns region badge

Anglo Saxon Britain consisted of seven kingdoms. During the seventh century the two northern kingdoms of Deria (modern day Northumberland and Cumbria) and Bernica (modern day Yorkshire and Lancashire) merged to form Northumbria.

Edwin was the King of Deira and Bernicia from about 616 until his death. He converted to Christianity and was baptised in 627, after he fell at the Battle of Hatfield Chase, he was venerated as a saint.

Edwin was crowned as the king of Northumbria in York Minster on Easter day 627. The three crowns represent the three kingdoms, Deria, Bernica and Northumbria.

The region standard

The standard was designed to represent Girlguiding in North East England. The standard includes the following insignia, the Girlguiding trefoil and the arms of England’s patron saint being followed by legendary arms of Edwin, the Anglo Saxon King who first united this area. Beyond the Motto, the roundel of Saint George fighting the dragon, symbolises the triumph of good over evil for which Girlguiding strives.


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