Public gets behind a fund raising project to restore historic lifeboat


The ongoing project to restore an historic Hastings lifeboat has enjoyed a good response from the public says Dee Day White.

The Cyril and Lilian Bishop was used to evacuate troops from the beaches of Dunkirk during the Second World War.

After going out of service she had been hidden away in a French boatyard after being bought by lifeboat enthusiast Simon Evans.

She was acquired earlier this year by Old Town stalwarts Dee Day White and Tush Hamilton.

Dee Day said: “The fund raising is going well for her restoration, mainly due to the public response of people donating in memory of their loved ones.

This is a lovely Hastings legacy and this time next year, people who donated will be able to sit by their own memorial, with their own thoughts and memories.

The work on her, putting right 85 years of use, and sometimes abuse, is coming along well under the control of our volunteer carpenter at the East Hastings Sea Angling Association compound by the RNLI boathouse.

“Please go along and take a look at the boat. She was the heart of the Hastings Old Town fishing community crewed solely by our fishermen.

Trade Paints, in the Old Town, have promised to supply all the paint, varnish and fuller for this grand old lady, which is wonderful news.

“Are there a few retired painters and decorators out there who could spare the odd hour or two on this project?

The main sponsor Skinners Sheds is organising a welcome home party for the boat shortly but in the meantime any offers of help, labour-wise or financially, would be greatly appreciated.”

Contact Dee Day and Bev on 07812 077008 or Tush and Pat on 07546 461302.

The estimated cost of restoring the lifeboat to her former glory is £15,000. She will eventually go on display in the Old Town.

Donations can be made payable to ‘The Macbean & Bishop Trust” and sent to the treasurer at 4, All Saints Crescent, Hastings TN35 5PD or paid in at any Santander Bank or through internet banking to Sort Code 090128, A/c 49444310.

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