Largs Lifeboat Fundraising Branch welcomes Charles Hunter-Pease back
The Largs Lifeboat Fundraising Branch welcomed back the RNLI Chairman to speak at the Annual Lunch at the Willowbank last week.
This was his first Fundraising event in Scotland just after taking office in 2013, and the Branch was delighted he accepted another invitation as he completes his term. To mark his retiral which he says “is a handover, not a goodbye”, he was presented with a cake decorated with a model of the Largs lifeboat and the flag, which he cut with Cathy Holgate.
In his after-lunch speech, he spoke of the RNLI being launched in 1824 with the founding of a beach and rescue fleet, and went on to describe its development since—with the different class lifeboats, a seasonal lifeguard service, a flood and rescue service, the building of a Training College and the inroads made into its building and maintenance service, telling some amusing stories along the way. He also highlighted the recent Respect the Water campaign introduced because around 190 people drown in British waters every year and the RNLI are aiming to half this by 2024.
He reminded everyone that none of this would be possible without the volunteers and supporters who work so hard to raise funds and congratulated the Branch on its increasing achievements over the years. He said much comes from leadership which here over the last few years had “been exemplary and second to none”. In recognition of this, he presented Cathy Holgate, who has chaired the Branch for 11 years, with a certificate acknowledging her “invaluable service as a member of the Scottish Council and with the Branch”.
Cathy said everyone really enjoyed the event which raised over £1250. “The meal was excellent, the company enjoyable and Charles is a lively Speaker. I knew nothing about the award which was a complete surprise and I was very proud to receive it from the Chairman in front of so many volunteers and supporters who have worked alongside me over this time. You could say it was the icing on the cake!”
Key facts about the RNLI
The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and, in a normal year, more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.