Category Archives: News

LIONS HOME ALONE CHRISTMAS COLLECTION

The Mersea Island Lions wish every one a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Please support our collection on Saturday 16th December 2017 to help supply dinners to the elderly and infirm who are alone on Christmas day. ALSO Feel free to attend our Presentation Night at Waldegraves on Friday 2nd February 2018 at 7.30pm. This is where the Lions present cheques to organisations and individuals from money raised through out the year by yourselves giving freely,. A big thank you.

VOLUNTEER DRIVERS REQUIRED

ARE YOU AGED BETWEEN 21YRS AND 70YRS WITH A CLEAN GROUP B LICENCE.

HAVE YOU CONSIDERED TO HELP THE COMMUNITY BY VOLUNTEERING TO DRIVE THE LIONS COMMUNITY MINI BUS FOR A FEW HOURS EVERY OTHER WEEK. 

THE HOURS ARE EVERY WEDNESDAY OR EVERY OTHER WEDNESDAY TO TAKE LOCAL PEOPLE FROM MERSEA TO COLCHESTER, LET THEM DO A COUPLE OF HOURS SHOPPING AND THEN RETURN. THE HOURS ARE 8.30AM TO 1PM.

OR EVEN EVERY TUESDAY OR THURSDAY OR EVERY OTHER TUESDAY OR THURSDAY 8.30AM TO 12PM COLLECTING PEOPLE FROM THEIR ADDRESSES TO AND FROM THE SHOPS ON THE ISLAND.

IF YOU CAN HELP AT ALL CONTACT THE LIONS ON 01206 385822

LIONS SUMMER SHOW 2017

The Lions Committee would like to thank all the S.M.I.L.E. Volunteers who helped make the Lions Summer Show a huge success. We were all pleased to Welcome and see all the members of the public who attended. Through out the day  all sorts of displays were put on with various types of Stalls, Arena Displays (the fun dog show was very well attended) Fire and Rescue (with their fat fire display)  The vehicles that attended this year was a great array of different types and ages of vehicles from 1924 to nearly present day. There were Tractors, scaled down cars, American hot rods and many more. Vintage Buses running people to and from the show, Children Activities  and plenty of refreshments. This was (so we have been told) that this was our best and well presented summer show yet. Looking forward to next year if so the date is 11th August 2018 If you have any suggestions or comments on this years show or maybe something you would like to see at next years show then send a comment by visiting our website and using the contact app or use the Transport Display web site. Thank you all again for your support.

Annual Cheque Presentation and Thank-You Evening Friday 3 February 2017

From Roy Chamberlain:

This is the evening when we make donations to local charities and deserving causes as a result of our fund-raising throughout the year. It is also the occasion when we are able to publicly thank our volunteers and those who sponsor our fund-raising events. Without their help we could not raise these funds, or carry out our work in the community. We call them S.M.I.L.Es – Supporting Mersea Island Lions Efforts.

Our President, Lion Christine Chamberlain, sent her apologies as she is awaiting major spinal surgery. Past President Lion Roy Chamberlain led the proceedings and introduced our distinguished guests Lions International 105EA District Governor Lion Nigel Folkard and his wife Marion, Zone Chairman Lion Sandie Briault and her husband Lion Tony, and the West Mersea Town Council Deputy Mayor Robert Jenkins and his wife Sue.

DONATIONS given to charities and deserving causes during the past year was over £13,000.

  1. £10.000 was presented to the following charities during the evening:-
    Essex Air Ambulance
    Mersea Island Packing Shed
    Mersea Island Explorer Scouts
    Mersea Island First Responders
    1st Mersea Island Guides
    Mersea Island Blind Spot
    Mersea Island Junior Rugby Football Club
    Mersea Island Junior Squash Club
    Mersea Island Methodist Church Toddler Group
    Mersea Island Free Church Toddler Group
    Mersea Island RNLI
    Mersea Island Festival
    Action for Family Carers
    Colchester Hospital Cancer Campaign
    Colchester Hospital Time Garden
    Tools with a Mission
    BikeActive
    Revitalise Respite Holidays
    Lions 105EA District Governor Lady’s Charity – Cystic Fibrosis
    Lions 105 District Centennial Project – Hearing Dogs
  2. Donations were also made to clubs and individuals during the past year when the Club had been asked for financial help. Some of the ways in which we have helped this year are:
    Taking a group of foster children to the Lions Children’s Fun Day at Gt Yarmouth Circus
    Children in Need
    RBL Poppy Appeal
    Supporting the Zone Wardens in their work with the School and Elderly on Mersea Island
    A Christmas Day lunch and tea for 31 people home-alone on Christmas Day
    A defibrillator sited at Cudmore Grove

The monies enabling us to support these worthy causes had been raised by:-

  • Manning the gate at a Waldegraves Car Boot Sale
  • Selling raffle tickets on behalf of the Mersea Food Drink and Leisures Festival
  • Round the Island All Terrain Race (half marathon), and 5 & 10 Mile Races
  • The Annual Lions Summer Show and Transport and Classic Car Show
  • Car-parking for the Colchester and District Scooter Rally
  • Selling mulled wine, mince pies and sausage rolls at Mersea Lights-up
  • The Christmas Street Collection for the Home-alone Christmas Dinners
  • Monies raised by letting out our beach-hut which is available for use in the community.

Waldegraves presented us with a cheque for £2,105. We are delighted to be working with them, we also appreciate their generosity and hospitality through out the year.

Once again we are most grateful to David Lord of Waldegraves Holiday and Leisure Park for enabling us to hold this annual event in the Wheatsheaf.  We are particularly indebted to Chris Parsons and all his staff who do so much to make the evening such a huge success.

Our Greatest achievement of the year?

Our new Lions Community Mini Bus which was parked outside during the evening

Our thanks to all who have made donations and helped make this possible.

The Lions have a new bus

The pictures above show Mersea Island Lions club President Mrs Christine Chamberlain receiving the keys to the bus from Chris Jeakins of H.W.Pickrell on Thursday 5th January 2017, Roy Chamberlain messing about as usual and members of the Mersea Islands Lions who collected the bus

Background
In 1982 Ralph Lukham saw the need for a community bus for the island. He approached Harry Kell ( Pam Baldwins father ), to see if he would organise the running of this project. He also approached our Lions club to see if we could purchase a bus with Harry overseeing the bus operation. So this is how our little white bus was born.

It was sponsored by local businesses advertising their companies to help cover the running costs. Tony Balwin advertised on the rear of the bus, but because it got so dirty nobody could see it, so he moved his advertising to the side of the bus where it was promptly hit by another vehicle making Tony feel perhaps the bus advertising was not a good idea!!!!!!

Harry Kell continued to operate the Lions bus service until in 1995 he became unwell and passed away at the end of that year. During this time the Lions changed the bus twice. Harry never joined the Lions but was made an honorary Lion because of his commitment to the Bus project.

A fourth replacement bus was purchased and ran until 2011. At this time a fifth bus was purchased and ran until we replaced it with our new bus January 2017

Present
As winter approached our present bus started to show more signs of its age – 12 years old and 110,000 miles.  Following a recent article about the need to replace the bus, our own funds were very generously topped up by donations totaling  £3,900 from Mersea Life readers, Mersea Town Council and East Mersea Village Hall. So the decision was taken to invest the money we had into a newer bus ( a brand new bus was still too expensive ).

The new bus is 5 years old with only 28,000 miles on the clock and has a one year guarantee. The bus can be driven on a car licence and has 17 seats, 3 more then our previous bus. Whilst we wanted to provide wheelchair access using a lift system we have as yet not provided this facility. We can provide access using ramps which are carried on the bus. Unfortunately advance notice of this requirement is needed as 4 seats have to be removed to allow one wheel chair and a second person on the bus to assist the driver in positioning the wheelchair on and off .

Our bus is not only used to transport Mersea residents to and from shopping and social club outings but can be loaned to any individual or organization for a donation to help with the running.

Drivers:- The Bus operates 5 days a week using volunteer drivers, each driver spending 3-4 hrs on their rostered day, usually mornings. Drivers are always needed, so if you have one or two days spare once a fortnight and would like to offer your services to
drive the bus, please contact The Mersea Island Lions on 01206 385822. This number can also be used to arrange a loan of the bus.

Mersea Island Lions club would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our past and present drivers for for their time and dedication whilst driving our “ Little White Bus”.

Mersea Community Services, Friday Fish and Chip Club using the bus for the first time.
Mersea Community Services, Friday Fish and Chip Club using the bus for the first time.

– Article and pictures by Lion Keith Bird (January 2017)