A big well done to Malcolm Somner, from our Milton Place, who has received a very special accolade from the Royal National Lifeboat Institution - the Bronze Badge.
The badge is only given to those members of the charity who have shown outstanding dedication to the organisation's efforts to save lives at sea.
As chairman of the Littlehampton, Arundel and Bognor Regis Fundraising Branch in West Sussex, Malcolm has played a key role in that respect. In the five years that Malcolm has been chairman, the annual funds raised for the RNLI by his branch have increased from £30,000 to nearer £80,000, and his goal now is to move that up to six figures.
Malcolm said: I am honoured to receive such acknowledgement from the RNLI, but running the Lifeboat Station is very much a team effort.
There are nearly 100 volunteers involved at Littlehampton RNLI Lifeboat Station alone, which includes the boat crew, shore crew, boathouse attendants, shop staff, education team and fundraisers to mention a few.
I come from a family with a history of involvement in either the Royal Navy, Merchant Navy, Coastguards or RNLI and I am proud to be a part of such an amazing organisation dedicated to saving lives at sea.
With an average of more than 80 call outs per year, it costs around £100,000 per annum to keep the Lifeboat Station active and the crews safe, properly equipped and fully trained. The money comes solely through donations from the public and businesses.
Malcolm received the award in front of an invited audience of around 300 guests at Littlehampton RNLI Lifeboat Station, and pictured are (from left): Charles Hunter-Pease OBE (Chairman of the RNLI), Malcolm Somner and Captain Mike McCartain OBE (Littlehampton RNLI Lifeboat Station Chairman).