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Fireworks washout is blow for lifeboat

PUBLISHED: 09:13 08 November 2008 | UPDATED: 12:13 03 July 2010

DISAPPOINTMENT: Caister Lifeboat chairman Paul Garrod

DISAPPOINTMENT: Caister Lifeboat chairman Paul Garrod

They hoped it would only be the glittering fallout from fizzing fireworks that would rain down over Caister beach last weekend.

But Saturday's planned big event in aid of lifeboat funds turned out to be a dry-land disaster for the crew whose efforts were washed out by wintry winds and rain.

They hoped it would only be the glittering fallout from fizzing fireworks that would rain down over Caister beach last weekend.

But Saturday's planned big event in aid of lifeboat funds turned out to be a dry-land disaster for the crew whose efforts were washed out by wintry winds and rain.

Caister lifeboat chairman Paul Garrod said the lifeboat leant heavily on the big money spinner which in some years raises £8000 but only coined £200 on Saturday.

“We were all there from 8am to set up the bar and the barbecue and the fireworks' boys were there first thing as well. But it got to about five or six in the afternoon and it was awful on the beach. We let the children's display off at 7pm and the main display was going to be at about 9pm but the fireworks people said no way. It was a great shame. Speaking as chairman I am gutted for the crew who put a lot of work into it and disappointed to have let people down. But if we can ask people to bear with us we will keep the fireworks which were sponsored by eon and have a separate event early on in the summer. We do not do it for the reward but we would like to take some money.”

Keeping afloat the country's only all-weather lifeboat independent from the RNLI costs £120,000 and means Mr Garrod is more dependant than ever on the sales of a new hardback book The Rescues of the Caister Lifeboats which includes vivid descriptions and images.

Meanwhile Filby benefitted from a fine weather window for its fireworks display on Sunday. The previous day's heavy rain meant people couldn't park on the waterlogged field as planned but more than 400 people enjoyed the event which raised almost £1000 towards the village hall fund.

Adrian Thompson said he was pleased with the turn out and the sum raised which pushed the total to so far to £50,000.

“It started off in 1999 and every year we have increased the amount of fireworks and still make a bit of money. People were very good about the parking and I would like to thank Filby Bridge and the residents of Church Lane.

The next fundraising event is on November 29 with a Christmas Fair. And on December 13 and 14 Filby is hosting an open village event with hanging baskets decked with lights and festive cheer with mince pies and carols round the tree. Mr Thompson said the yuletide theme was a departure from the summer flowers which had made Filby famous adding another string to blooming bow.

The Rescues of the Caister Lifeboats is available priced £30 from Palmers, the Mercury office at 169 King Street, Books Inside in Market Gates and Jarrolds of Norwich or from Paul Garrod on 07775 604668.


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