Preserving history is a worthwhile and fascinating aspect of Howdens' community involvement...
The Clacton-on-sea depot recently donated £250 to account holders, Frinton Restorations, to help refurbish a 19th century motor lifeboat, the James Stevens No.14. Chris Byford-Smith, whose grandfather had been second coxswain for the boat, worked on the restoration and is now one of its five skippers. Brian Jennings helps to co-ordinate fundraising pleasure trips, and is company secretary for the Frinton & Walton Heritage Trust, which preserves historical knowledge of the Walton area in Essex.
In 1998, the trust bought the lifeboat. Its long history includes working as a fireboat during World War Two, as well as being an important vessel for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), rescuing 227 people between 1900 and 1928.
In 2012, the boat confirmed its part in nautical history when it sailed as part of the Royal Jubilee pageant in flotilla headed by the Royal Barge.