Champion fundraisers who drummed up £100,000 are toast of lifeboat station

Champion fundraiser Sue Wharton Weaver with Hemsby Lifeboat's Dan Hurd

Champion fundraiser Sue Wharton Weaver with Hemsby Lifeboat's Dan Hurd - Credit: Ella Wilkinson

A fundraising champion and a pack of Christmas tree-pulling dogs have been given special praise by a lifeboat team.

On Sunday Hemsby Lifeboat held ceremonies to thank two of its main supporters over the years.

They saw the crew's new Atlantic 75 lifeboat named Sea Weaver in honour of Hemsby resident Sue Wharton Weaver, who over the last eight years has raised more than £100,000 for the independent lifeboat station.

There were also cheers as Hemsby Lifeboat's new shed was named Newfoundlands Boat House.

Members of the East Anglian Working Newfoundlands group with the new Hemsby lifeboat

Members of the East Anglian Working Newfoundlands group with the new Hemsby lifeboat - Credit: Ella Wilkinson

It was named after the members of the East Anglian Working Newfoundlands group, long-time supporters of the station.

The group's giant hounds help to raise money for the lifeboat team by carting Christmas trees to people's cars at the Elveden Estate in return for a donation.

The dogs also appear regularly at Hemby Lifeboat events.

The East Anglian Working Newfoundlands club with Hemsby Lifeboat crew at the new boathouse

The East Anglian Working Newfoundlands club with Hemsby Lifeboat crew at the new boat house - Credit: Ella Wilkinson

Ms Weaver, who raises funds through selling other people's unwanted items on, was surprised to find the lifeboat had been named after her.

And she was further stunned when she was taken out on the Sea Weaver to see how it has boosted the lifeboat station's lifesaving efforts.

Sue Wharton Weaver about to be taken out on the boat named in her honour

Sue Wharton Weaver about to be taken out on the boat named in her honour - Credit: Ella Wilkinson

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The new boat is easier to launch that its predecessor and is faster and can go out further to sea.

Ms Weaver said: " I am quite shocked. I think the boat should be named Community Spirit to recognise everyone's support in Hemsby."

The Sea Weaver is put through its paces

The Sea Weaver is put through its paces - Credit: Ella Wilkinson

Lifeboat coxswain Dan Hurd said: "Sue is absolutely great. What she does for the lifeboat means a lot to all of us here."

Coxswain Dan Hurd names the Sea Weaver

Coxswain Dan Hurd names the Sea Weaver - Credit: Ella Wilkinson

After seeing the Newfoundlands Boat House plaque being unveiled, Alec Peck, from the working dog group, told the station: "We feel proud and honoured you have displayed our name on this boat house."

Mr Peck also praised the crew for going out in all conditions to save lives at sea.

A newfoundland with the group's certificate of thanks

A newfoundland with the group's certificate of thanks - Credit: Ella Wilkinson

The ceremonies were made during Hemsby Lifeboat's first ever Christmas weekend market, which has raised thousands for the volunteer crew.

The station needs to raise £30,000 a year just to meet running costs. On average the volunteer crew are called out 30 times a year.

The station also thanked other supporters and firms who worked on the new lifeboat and shed with certificates and words of appreciation.