Pensioner with happy childhood seaside memories leaves lifeboat biggest ever legacy

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A PENSIONER who enjoyed happy childhood holidays at an East Yorkshire beauty spot has left its lifeboat the largest ever legacy in its history.

Former Government chauffeur Irene Child, from Rawdon, West Yorkshire, died in February aged 78.

She left the bulk of her estate, almost £370,000, to Flamborough Lifeboat in her will.

Flamborough RNLI Treasurer Paul Arro said: “I would like to express the sincere gratitude of everyone at the Flamborough Lifeboat Station for this most generous and truly magnificent bequest. We think it is the largest legacy ever received at the station and will be put to good use in providing continued lifeboat cover around the Headland.”

Miss Child, who had no children, had spent many caravan holidays at Flamborough with her parents during her childhood and continued to enjoy visiting the area as an adult.

She was a Government driver in Leeds during her working life, and drove officials around the country.

Her friend and former colleague Susan Spray said Miss Child loved to travel and was a talented artist.

She added: “Irene enjoyed painting the places she visited and had a great affection for the beautiful Flamborough Headland.

“She had always planned to leave a legacy to the RNLI at Flamborough and I’m sure she would be delighted to know what a big difference her gift will be making to the volunteer crew members there.”

The money will probably go towards the annual running costs of the station - of around £90,000 a year - and could also help pay for the refit of the current lifeboat, the Elizabeth Jane Palmer.

The lifeboat attends around 35 to 40 incidents a year, and has 20 members of crew and six tractor drivers, all of whom are volunteers.

They attend everything from people being cut off by the tide, to boats suffering engine failure and cliff rescues.

Three weeks ago it rescued three kayackers who got into difficulty around the north of Flamborough Head.