My Sur­rey Week­end

Fol­low­ing 23 years of ser­vice in the Army Air Corps, Ash Vale lo­cal Scott Kelly re­cently be­came the 409th Beefeater at the Tower of Lon­don. We caught up with the tower’s new­est re­cruit to find out about his ideal Sur­rey week­end

Surrey Life - - Inside -

The Tower of Lon­don beefeater from Sur­rey

As a Yeo­man Warder, my week­ends don’t al­ways fall on a Sat­ur­day and Sun­day but I wouldn’t have it any other way, it’s truly a unique job which I’m in­cred­i­bly priv­i­leged to do. Away from the Tower of Lon­don, I love to un­wind by go­ing on long walks in the Sur­rey Hills with my six-year-old Alaskan Mala­mute. There are so many green spa­ces, from Box Hill to Leith Hill, it re­ally is a dog’s par­adise and we love dis­cov­er­ing new ar­eas – prefer­ably close to wa­ter for her favourite pas­time, swim­ming.

I have two young daugh­ters, Lau­ren and Olivia, who keep me on my toes. En­cour­ag­ing them to have some down­time from their phones and to en­joy the fresh air is a chal­lenge, but hav­ing so much pic­turesque scenery on your doorstep cer­tainly helps. We have some lovely lo­cal dog-friendly pubs near us and a hearty post-walk lunch is al­ways an en­joy­able thing to do after work­ing up an ap­petite.

From an early age rugby has al­ways been a part of my life. In re­cent years I’ve been spend­ing any spare Satur­days on the pitch with my lo­cal team just across the bor­der at Farn­bor­ough Rugby Club. I love the so­cial side of the sport; it’s like hav­ing a sec­ond fam­ily around you. We oc­ca­sion­ally have away fix­tures in Sur­rey so it’s a great way to hit the road and ex­plore the county and meet fel­low rugby fa­nat­ics.

I re­cently swapped my car for my first ever Harley David­son mo­tor­bike, which makes for easy travel to and from the Tower of Lon­don. When I’m not in my bike leathers, you will find me on duty at the tower in my iconic uni­form. Liv­ing and work­ing in a fa­mous fortress in the heart of the cap­i­tal is truly awe-in­spir­ing and fills me with an enor­mous amount of pride. I work shifts to cover the 21 dif­fer­ent du­ties that take place on a daily ba­sis, along­side 36 other Yeo­man Warders [Beefeaters]. This in­cludes the Cer­e­mony of the Keys, a clos­ing cer­e­mony that has taken place ev­ery night at the Tower of Lon­don with­out fail for at least 700 years.

A key part of my day is learn­ing word-for-word the ‘Story’ – the 8,500 word script of the fa­mous Yeo­man Warder tour of the tower. When it’s per­fected, I can then lead my very own Yeo­man Warder tour around the site.

There are some real his­tor­i­cal gems in Sur­rey too, in­clud­ing Hamp­ton Court Palace, which falls un­der the same in­de­pen­dent char­ity that looks after the Tower of Lon­don – His­toric Royal Palaces. I’m look­ing for­ward to get­ting my his­tory fix with a trip over there soon!

‘It’s truly a unique job, which I’m in­cred­i­bly priv­i­leged to do’

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