Dozens of people attended the AGM of Burnham-On-Sea’s rescue hovercraft charity BARB Search & Rescue on Friday (October 14th) when a busy year of activities was reviewed.

The charity’s volunteers gathered at Burnham and Highbridge Town Council Chambers in Jaycroft Road for the 30th annual meeting where they looked back at the past year’s wide variety of call-outs, modernisation and maintenance work and fundraising activities.

The charity’s treasurer Mike Ross, who has been in his post for 30 years since the formation of the charity, was thanked for his service as he retired from the role, passing on the position to his deputy Graham Hallsworth.

A cake was cut to mark the 30th anniversary of the charity by BARB Search & Rescue President Roger Flower, Chairman Mark Newman and trustees Tony Winterburn and Andy Brewer.

The Neville Jones Shield, named after BARB’s late founder, which is awarded to BARB’s volunteer of the year, was presented by current President Roger Flower to David Kemp following a vote by the crewmembers.

Long-service certificates were also presented to several of the charity’s volunteers including Mark Newman (20 years), Graham Hallsworth (15 years), Roger Burgess (10 years), Bob Smith (5 years), Michael Young (5 years) and Kath Allen (5 years).

Several local companies and individuals were thanked for their generous support of the organisation during the year, who included The Retreat Holiday Park, Berrow and Burnham Golf Club, Burnham’s Tesco store, Northam Farm Holiday Park, Burnham Bowling Club, the Ritz Social Club, Lyndon Bull, Mandy Bettany and Debbie Keates, Bridgwater Harley Owners Group, Tina Lowe and The Victoria Hotel.

Mark also thanked the charity’s fundraisers, crew and supporters for their dedication, with the volunteers putting in over thousands of hours of time every year.

Operations Manager Mike Lowe  also thanked BARB’s team for their commitment and close working with other services including Coastguards, RNLI, Police and ambulance service.

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