Ahead of the pack in trust's challenge
MEET 11-year-old Matthew Wilcock... a handy person to have around while adventuring in the great outdoors.
When it comes to building rafts, swing on a rope or making a mud slide, then Matthew's your man — for the Sketty Scout has just completed the National Trust's 50 Things To Do Before You're 11¾ challenge.
He is also believed to be the first person in the Swansea area to tick off all 50 challenges.
The scheme was launched by the National Trust last April as a nationwide campaign to encourage sofa- bound children to take to the outdoors and enjoy classic adventures — from skimming stones to building dens.
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Matthew said: "It is great to go outdoors, complete fun challenges and get exercise, and you get a real feeling of achievement when you complete these goals.
"There's so much more to life than staying inside doing or making things, watching television, going to the cinema, playing on my computer or on my game console."
As for his favourite challenge he said: "I enjoyed the raft challenge the most, I was able to do it while visiting Bluestone in Pembrokeshire with my family.
"Climbing a tree was the easiest challenge because I had already done it loads of times, but finding a geocache was quite difficult because you need the right equipment."
His dad, David Wilcock, said: "He is the first in his pack to complete the challenge and the National Trust, who had to make a personalised certificate for him, said that not many people had done it at all."
An equally proud Akela, (Cub Scout leader) Viv Lewis, who helped switch Matthew onto the challenge, said: "The list was hugely varied, some wacky, some useful, but a lot of fun.
"We are extremely proud of him. He used his initiative and with his dad's help he achieved the lot.
"I don't know of anyone else locally who has done that.
"It goes to show how resourceful our cub scouts are."
The challenge is still open to youngsters with a spokesman for the trust saying: "We're hoping that the nation's children will embrace the 50 things and start having their very own outdoor adventures with their family."