While presenting a donation from a local charity to the RNLI in thanks for the rescue, he said: "You were there for them on that day, so they can be with us today.”
Cleethorpes RNLI were visited on Sunday, July 14, by representatives of Humberston North Sea Lions Club, accompanied by two girls recently rescued by the Lifeboat off Cleethorpes.
Brian Willey, founder and first president of Humberston North Sea Lions Club, wanted to thank the charity’s volunteer crew for rescuing his granddaughter and her friend just over a week ago, when they were trapped on a sandbank by the incoming tide.
Upon hearing of the rescue, Mr Willey instantly decided to donate £500 of the £1,000 he had been allocated by the Lions to donate to charities of his choice, upon completing 50 years of service to the Lions, to the RNLI. He had previously donated the other £500 to local animal Sanctuary, Puds.
When he had informed the current president, Paul Christofferson, of his decision and the reasons behind it, the current committee of the Humberston North Sea Lions decided to double the donation by offering a further donation of £500 on their behalf.
Speaking at the lifeboat station, Mr Willey said: “The Lions have had a long association with the RNLI in Cleethorpes, but I never expected to be in the situation where I am so personally grateful to you all. Because you were there for them on that day, so they can be with us today.”
Cleethorpes Lifeboat had rescued the girls from a sandbank near Cleethorpes Pier on July 5, when they were enjoying an afternoon on the beach unaware of the incoming tide. Within 20 minutes of their rescue, the sandbank had been completely covered by the tide.
Both girls accompanied the Lions Club this morning to see again the crew and lifeboat which had rescued them, and sat in the lifeboat for the presentation of the funds.
Andy Burden, Deputy Launch Authority at Cleethorpes RNLI, said: “We never expect or seek out thanks, reward or recognition for the work we do, but occurrences like today really do boost the morale of all our crew. We thank the Lions, and especially Mr Willey, for their continued support and wish them all the best. £1,000 is a significant sum which will be a great support to the running costs of our station, so will directly benefit the local community.”
Pictured: Representatives of Humberston North Sea Lions, and the two rescued girls, watch Founder and First President Brian Willey present cheques to crew member Matt McNally, watched by members of Cleethorpes Lifeboat Crew and Brian’s daughter, Lesley Codd.
For more information, contact Matt McNally, Lifeboat Press Officer at Cleethorpes RNLI, on 07771-797556
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 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and 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.
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