NORTH Down MP Lady Sylvia Hermon paid tribute to the partners of the lifeboat crew and the work of the fundraising committee when she presented long service awards to six members of the team: Peter Alcock, Alfie McCulla, John Ashwood, George Thomson, Murdoch and Evelyn Bennett.
“When your loved ones are called away in the middle of the night there is always the fear they may not return,” she said.
“No matter what your creed, the colour of your skin or where you come from the lifeboat crew is ready to take a risk to save you. For that we must all be very grateful.
“I am conscious that a former Co Down MP Sir Walter Smiles lost his life on the journey home from Westminster in the Princess Victoria disaster of 1953.”
Lifeboat operations manager Alan Couser made a special presentation to Lady Sylvia in recognition of her support and an extra special ‘award’ was received by coxswain Philip McNamara for an unusual rescue operation triggered by a bunch of party balloons.