​Littlehampton Wave Life Saving Club celebrates members' achievements of 2023 at annual presentation evening

​Littlehampton Wave Life Saving Club celebrated all the members' achievements of 2023 at its annual presentation evening, some for the second time.
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Around 50 members, guests, family and supporters were welcomed to the event at St Andrew's United Reformed Church in Rustington last Wednesday.

It was the first time since the club was formed in 2019 that a presentation evening had been arranged exclusively for Littlehampton, as previous years it had been combined with the Horsham club.

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Chairman David Slade said the aim was to celebrate all that was achieved in 2023.

Littlehampton Wave Life Saving Club awards presentation eveningLittlehampton Wave Life Saving Club awards presentation evening
Littlehampton Wave Life Saving Club awards presentation evening

The club is open to anyone over the age of 12 who can swim at least two lengths. Those interested in joining to take instruction that may help save their own life, or the lives of others, can visit www.lwlsc.co.uk for an information leaflet or ask at The Wave reception.

Littlehampton mayor Freddie Tandy presented 74 proficiency medals and certificates to members, as well as certificates of appreciation to members, parents and other supporters who between them clocked up many hours of drowning prevention activity in the Littlehampton area on behalf of the Royal Life Saving Society.

Matt Williams, manager of The Wave, presented National Pool Lifeguard Qualification certificates to Olivia Kidd, Jack Bristow and Jude Morris, as well as a National Vocational Beach Lifeguard Qualification certificate to Jude.

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Members who received national honours in October in Coventry were presented with their awards again, 'so that the other club members and families could applaud those'.

Mr Tandy said it was an extraordinary achievement that so small a club, which had existed only since 2019, should be awarded two of the five RLSS National Honours Cups in the same year.

Ken White, a past RLSS UK president, had been unable to go to Coventry, so he attended the presentation event to present the Ken White Cup for Fundraising to Sophia Hendey.

He also presented ten RLSS members with the RLSS William Henry Award certificates, recognising 851 hours of volunteer activity, including instructing, administering and supporting outreach events.

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Debbie Hunt, current RLSS UK president, re-presented the Stanley Peck Cup Organiser of the Year award to David Slade and certificates of merit to Jude Morris and Sophia Hendey.Sophia also collected the Sussex Young Life Saver of the Year award, while Gary Cooke was presented with a Friends of the Society certificate recognising many hours spent performing as the club mascot, Norman the Newfy – and he was even on duty welcoming guests as they arrived.

Among guests was Cheryl Payne and her Newfoundland dog Bandit, who, along with other members of Newfs In Action, had visited the club for a beach event last August, where the trained dogs performed rescues of some of the delighted club youngsters.

David said: "Bandit was presented with a commemorative bib and was thoroughly spoilt all evening."

Cups and medals won in Sussex branch competitions in 2023 were re-presented by Sussex branch president John Stainer. He also announced the club speed competitions results as follows:

Ladies, 1 Tassia Wormald, 2 Olivia Kidd, 3 Sophia Hendey.

Mens, 1 Jude Morris, 2 Jack Bristow, 3 Ted Young.

Novices, 1 Tom Slade, 2 Faye Thompson, 3 Keris Ginnaw.

The Endeavour Cup for outstanding achievement was awarded to Belinda Barrington and the members elected Sophia Hendey to win the Club Member of the Year Cup.