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RNLI volunteers receive awards

The Duke of Kent presents the RNLI Silver Badge for fundraising to Joyce Ross of the Ladies Guild. Please credit: Adrian Don/RNLI

The Duke of Kent presents the RNLI Silver Badge for fundraising to Joyce Ross of the Ladies Guild. Please credit: Adrian Don/RNLI

A Berwick woman has been honoured with a silver badge in recognition of her fantastic fundraising efforts for the RNLI.

Joyce Ross, of Lovaine Terrace, was presented with the award by the Duke of Kent on his visit to Berwick lifeboat station last week.

She has worked tirelessly to raise funds for the RNLI for more than 14 years.

“I was honoured to get the award in the first place but to receive it from the Duke of Kent was great.

“He had a few words with the ladies’ guild too and was keen to hear about the work we do.”

Joyce got involved through friends on the committee and since then has been secretary, chairman and treasurer.

She has organised many fundraising events, including abseiling, bungee jumping and the annual Flag Week.

“I abseiled off the viaduct behind Carr Rock a few years ago,” said Joyce, “and my two daughters did the bungee jump - I was too scared though!

She added: “The ladies’ guild have raised a lot of money over the years, about £20,000 last year alone.

“It’s a lot of hard work but it’s worth it and we also have a bit of fun along the way.”

The Duke of Kent, who is president of the RNLI, was on a two day visit to lifeboat stations in Northumberland. He began at Blyth and Newbiggin and moved on to Craster where helmsman Martin Browell received an award for 20 years of dedicated service.

He then had a tour of the RNLI Grace Darling Museum in Bamburgh where he chatted to the volunteers who keep it open to the public throughout the year.

His Royal Highness also managed to fit in an unscheduled visit to Seahouses where he witnessed the crew in action after they were called out to help a kitesurfer in difficulty.

The Duke saw the all-weather and inshore lifeboats being taken to the launching slip by the volunteer crew who had assembled in minutes to the pager alert. However, as the boats were turning to enter the water, Humber Coastguard cancelled the launch as the kite surfer had been found safely ashore.

Seahouses lifeboat operations manager Ian Clayton said: “I think some thought we had stage managed the call out, but it could not have been better timed for the benefit of our royal visitor!”

He was given a guided tour of the station and met crew and volunteers.

 

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