Morpeth Lions Club
Most of Morpeth Lions Club activities are centred locally, but the start of 2016 has seen members go international.
Lion Peter Wallum lives part of the year in the Philippines and at the start of January he headed north from Manila to the Morpeth Kinaragan Aeta School to present it with a cheque for £200 from the Lions.
Morpeth Lions has helped this school since 2002 after the village, near Mount Pinatubo, was destroyed by volcanic activity.
Peter generously added a further £100, and the school has now purchased a television set, a DVD player and a series of educational CDs. These are greatly appreciated by the staff and scholars.
Secondly, the Lions joined in Sanctuary Morpeth Network Day in aid of refugees and asylum seekers.
The Lions are specifically helping medical centres in camps in Lebanon for those fleeing the Syrian war.
Together with Norwegian, British and Lebanese Lions, the Morpeth Club is funding a scheme to provide prosthetic limbs for Syrian children who have lost limbs in the conflict.
On the day, some £730 was raised, which will be channelled through Lions International.
Thirdly, and closer to home, the Lions were able to help the Morpeth Harriers senior men’s team, who will be representing Great Britain in the annual Champion Clubs Cup Cross-Country championships in Kastamonu, Turkey.
To help them on their way to finding the £2,000 cost of the trip, Lion President Ian Brown presented the Harriers with a cheque for £200.
Sadly, it was not all good news for Morpeth Lions. The longest serving Lion, David Hicks has passed on to higher service.
David joined the Lions in 1974 and was President in 1986/87.
David was also well known locally through his business, Town and Country Cabinet Makers, and many local homes are graced with his restored furniture.
In Morpeth, David has a very visible local memorial as he rebuilt the hands of St George’s United Reformed Church clock, which are made of mahogany.
Until recently, he was active in all Lions Club activities, and his wood and metal working skills were often called upon by the Lions, particularly for props for various street collections.
The Lions will miss these skills, but most of all, will miss his wonderful smile and sense of humour.
David’s influence continues as a collection at his funeral raised £200 for the Morpeth Lions Club charity account.
The Lions Club is currently preparing for its next charity event.
This will be the Casino Night to be held at the Riverside Lodge, Morpeth, on Saturday, March 5. Tickets cost £15, including a supper and free draw. Tickets are available from Simon Pringle on 01670 513169.
Morpeth Lions Club meets at Morpeth RAFA Club, Wellway, on the second and fourth Tuesday of the month, at 8pm.