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RNLI lifeboat fund

exceeds £52,000 target

    Exclusive by Nicola Watson  

FUNDS raised for Withernsea RNLI’s new lifeboat the Mary Beal have exceeded the £52,000 target by £10,000. The fund for the new lifeboat stands at £62, 907.52 following a record-breaking year for the RNLI Humber and Holderness fundraising branch.

In May the Gazette reported how Withernsea RNLI launched a fundraising appeal for a new £52,000 lifeboat. Its existing D-Class inshore lifeboat, Henley Eight is nearing the end of her operational life, since going into service in 2009.

In order to replace Henley Eight, the RNLI asked the local fundraising committee in October 2017 to raise funds for the newer model.

Thanks to the family of the late Mary Beal, a £26,000 donation from Beal Homes kick-started the year-long appeal leaving the remaining £26,000 to be found with the help of local donors.

Now following a plethora of local events, the generosity of the community, donations and branch funding, the target has been smashed.

The new lifesaving vessel will be named in memory of Mary Beal, who was a keen supporter of the RNLI.

John Beal, non-executive director, and founder of Beal Homes, said: “The family and I are extremely delighted the new Withernsea lifeboat has achieved its funding target. It is a tremendous effort by all who have supported this worthwhile cause, which will be of great benefit to the local community.

“It is nearly a year since Mary Beal died and I know she would have been very happy to see her favourite charity so well supported. I believe it shows how popular and respected Mary was locally.

“The Beal family are very pleased to have played a small part in ensuring that Withernsea will get its new lifeboat on time.”

Chairman of the RNLI Fundraising Humber and Holderness branch, Malcolm Watkinson, said: “I am pleased to say that 2018 is the most successful year on record for fundraising. Bearing in mind that the RNLI asked the committee in October 2017 to raise sufficient funds to replace the existing ‘Henley Eight’ lifeboat in two years, we have completed this request in just over 12 months. The new lifeboat, Mary Beal, will go on station in 2019.

“The support has been quite fantastic with monies coming from all sources, legacies, donations, especially the popular community-based Betty’s Pots, community activities, box collections, and a variety of events put on by our hard-working crew and committee. On top of this we have had great support from the Withernsea Lions, The Buffaloes, Kingston and Wilberforce Masonic Lodge, Withernsea Choir, Kilnsea Caravan Parks plus many individuals.”

His words were echoed by Matthew Woodhouse, helmsman at Withernsea Lifeboat Station, who said: “Everyone at the station is ecstatic the £52,000 has been raised to fund the Mary Beal. We’d like to thank everyone who has donated towards the new boat, to have raised the money before the end of 2018 is remarkable. We also want to say a big thank you to our volunteer fundraising team. Their relentless efforts have been a big part of us reaching the £52,000 mark in such a short period of time.

“The boat is due to arrive in the summer of 2019, and the crew are already excited and the station’s management are already planning for her arrival.”

The Holderness Gazette - Serving News to the Holderness Region