‘Jam jars out and fill them up!’

Fund-raisers supporting the appeal for a new lifeboat on the north Northumberland coast are encouraging people to get collecting in jam jars.

As reported in last week’s Gazette, the Amble Shannon Appeal won the reader vote to be the fifth beneficiary of the Jam Jar Army, which has raised more than £50,000 in its first four years.

Dozens of readers had their say on which of the six nominees they wanted to be supported by the campaign in its fifth year.

The voting was incredibly tight with the top three separated by just a few votes.

The five others in the running were Bailiffgate Museum, Alnwick; Berwick & District Friends of Dementia; Great North Air Ambulance; Hippotherapy Northumberland and Samaritans of Northumbria.

Amble Lifeboat Fundraisers (ALF), along with RNLI Amble Management Committee, have been set a target of raising £200,000 by July 2016 to bring a much-needed and modern Shannon lifeboat to Amble.

Margaret Kelley, Eileen Gray, Vivien Wade, Allan Wade, Sheila Ridley and Eleanor Cassidy of Amble Lifeboat Fundraisers who are the new beneficiaries of the Jam Jar Army.

Margaret Kelley, Eileen Gray, Vivien Wade, Allan Wade, Sheila Ridley and Eleanor Cassidy of Amble Lifeboat Fundraisers who are the new beneficiaries of the Jam Jar Army.

Eleanor Cassidy, vice-chairman of ALF, said: “We are highly delighted to have got the nomination for the Jam Jar appeal.

“It’s all to go towards our new Shannon lifeboat which is due in service in July 2017, but we have a lot of money to raise in that time – up to £200,000 – so this will be a fantastic help towards the appeal.

“Everybody get your jam jars out, fill them up and see how just much we can raise in this next year. Everybody please – jam jars out and fill them up.”

Fund-raising for the new Jam Jar Army campaign is set to start in earnest from now, with stickers for jars and posters coming soon.

Amble RNLI launched the fund-raising appeal in July last year to raise £200,000 towards the cost of their new lifeboat. In 2017, Amble’s current all-weather Mersey-class lifeboat, The Four Boys, will be nearing the end of her operational life and is set to be replaced by the newest member of the RNLI fleet, a £2million Shannon-class lifeboat.

The Shannon is the RNLI’s next generation all-weather lifeboat and is the most agile in the RNLI fleet.

It is the first modern RNLI all-weather lifeboat to be propelled by water jets and not propellers.

Capable of 25 knots, the Shannon is 50 per cent faster than the lifeboats it replaces, ensuring that those in need are reached more quickly than before.

The volunteers at Amble Lifeboat Station have a long and proud history of saving lives at sea.

A lifeboat station was first established in the town in 1842 and since then, Amble RNLI lifeboats have launched more than 1,100 times, rescuing more than 750 people.