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Downham Market Freemasons raise more than £3,000 for RNLI





Downham Freemasons have raised more than £3,000 for the charity that saves lives at sea.

Clive Oldham made the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) his chosen charity during his year as master of the town’s St Winnold Lodge.

Mr Oldham and members of his family had breakfast with some of Hunstanton's volunteer RNLI crew before a tour of the station, and were were joined by John and Carole May, who bid more than £100 for the VIP tour, in a charity auction organised by the lodge.

Scarlett Oldham, aged nine, presents a cheque for £3,200 to Hunstanton RNLI Lifeboat operations manager Rigil Kent. Picture: RNLI/Chris Bishop
Scarlett Oldham, aged nine, presents a cheque for £3,200 to Hunstanton RNLI Lifeboat operations manager Rigil Kent. Picture: RNLI/Chris Bishop

“My wife's grandfather drowned at Southend in 1947 and the lifeboat went out to recover his body,” said retired engineer Mr May, 83.

“Ever since we got married we've been donating, we've always supported them because of what they did.”

Mr and Mrs May were shown around the station's hovercraft and lifeboat houses by lifeboat operations manager Rigil Kent. They also toured the station's operations room and found out more about the work of the crew and the roles of some of the many volunteers who help keep them ready to launch 24/7, whenever they are needed.

Retired NHS worker Mrs May, 80, said: “It makes you realise how much of their own time all these people give. The crew go out in all weathers and everything has to be maintained and checked afterwards.”

Afterwards, Mr Oldham's granddaughter Scarlett, aged nine, presented a cheque for £3,200

Mr Kent said: “They're raised £3,200, which is a phenomenal effort. They really enjoyed the tour and it was great to be able to thank them in person for thinking about us.”



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