The RNLI has recognised two stalwart fundraising volunteers at Hoylake and West Kirby RNLI with its esteemed long service badge.
James and Christine Lodder have volunteered together in support of the RNLI over several decades and were both recently presented with the lifesaving charity’s 30-year badge by Area Lifesaving Manager Lee Firman.
The couple have always had an interest and passion for the sea and the RNLI. They moved to Wirral from Stratford-upon-Avon in the early 1980s and began volunteering at the Hoylake and West Kirby Lifeboat Open Day nearly 40 years ago, selling RNLI souvenirs and counting the money raised through bucket collections.
They quickly became involved in other fundraising at the lifeboat stations, with James joining the Fundraising Committee in 1985 and later becoming Fundraising Treasurer and Station Treasurer.
Over the years, James gave many talks about the RNLI’s maritime search and rescue work to local Rotary, Round Table and other groups, as well as in local schools.
Christine also helped out at many RNLI fundraising events and assisted with the emptying of the charity’s collection boxes from local businesses and organisations.
James served as Treasurer during the high-profile £2 million fundraising appeal for Hoylake RNLI’s new boathouse and Shannon class all-weather lifeboat from 2007 to 2009.
He later became Chairman of the Hoylake and West Kirby RNLI Management Group and after this role, James continued as a member of the Fundraising Committee with the couple supporting numerous fundraising events. Although James retired from the committee earlier this year, the couple will continue in their support for the RNLI.
James was awarded the RNLI’s prestigious badges of service at silver and gold for his dedicated volunteering.
Speaking about the recognition for their long service, James said, “It’s been an honour and privilege for both Christine and me to have worked with such an amazing charity through such exciting times in the two stations’ history, including the funding and building of the new lifeboat and boathouse at Hoylake.”
Following the presentation, John Curry, Chairman of the Hoylake and West Kirby RNLI Management Group, said, “We were delighted to invite both James and Christine along after a management meeting where Lee Firman, the Area Lifesaving Manager, presented them each with a thirty-year badge.
“Our two stations know that James and Christine will always have an interest in their operations and will never be far away. We wish them the very best.”
Image: James and Christine Lodder’s long service to the RNLI was recognised with the presentation of their 30-year badges. Credit: Hoylake RNLI