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June 1, 2005
Hovercraft’s first birthday celebrated with open day and party

Crowds flocked to Burnham-On-Sea hovercraft station this week when the crew celebrated the craft’s first birthday with an open day, fundraising event and party.

It’s exactly one year since the Spirit Of Lelaina went into service in Burnham and the occasion was marked by BARB, the group that oversees the hovercraft, opening its doors to the public.

Young supporters at the hovercraft open day [Pic: Mike Lang]Hundreds of supporters and holidaymakers flooded in over several hours to chat to the crew, hear about recent rescues and learn how the craft is launched.

The hovercraft was also taken to Burnham Holiday Village where visitors got the chance to see the life-saving machine up close and take part in a wide range of fundraising activities.

“We’ve had an incredibly successful two days,” said hovercraft chairman Alan Miller. “Hundreds of people came along to join us celebrate the craft’s first year in service. More than 400 orange wristbands were sold and more than £1,000 was raised in just 48 hours. We’re very grateful to all the super support.”

A celebratory party and barbecue for crew members was also held to mark the completion of the first year of service.

Funded by the crew and chairman, it was an opportunity for everyone to relax and look back at a successful year when over 65 people have been helped or saved by the hovercraft.

“It was held as a thank you to the crew for all their commitment and hard work over the last year,” added Mr Miller. “They are a fantastic team and do an incredibly important job.”


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