Bench unveiled in honour of Hastings Old Town community stalwart, Agnes

Agnes Nicol
Agnes Nicol

A bench has been installed in the Old Town in honour of a community stalwart, who died earlier this year.

The memorial bench was unveiled at a ceremony on Saturday (August 19) and dedicated to Agnes Nicol, who worked tirelessly for SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity, formerly known as Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association.

Her bench was one of several that were unveiled alongside a plaque at the site of the Cyril and Lilian Bishop lifeboat, known as the Ghost of Dunkirk at the top of All Saints Street.

Agnes died on March 14 this year at St Michael’s Hospice aged 79.

Her daughter, Amanda, said: “She was awarded an OBE due to her work for SSAFA.

“She was director of nursing in the London office after many years of health visiting.

“Agnes travelled widely with her job, wherever there were British forces families. She travelled to Nepal, Northern Ireland and extensively in Germany.

“SSAFA deals with welfare issues for these families, including after disasters, such as the Zeebrugge ferry disaster.

“Agnes was very humble about her work and her award, but was extremely dedicated as her staff will testify.

“It’s fitting that she is near a lifeboat involved in Dunkirk. She would have been very proud to be associated with it.”

SSAFA’s staff and network of 7,000 volunteers assist more than 90,000 people every year, from Second World War veterans to the families of young servicemen and women wounded or killed in Afghanistan.

Founded in 1885, SSAFA is the UK’s oldest national Armed Forces charity.

For more information about the charity, log onto www.ssafa.org.uk.

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