A surprise thank-you for super fundraiser Nancy

PUBLISHED: 06:30 17 August 2016

Nancy Thompson being given a card and flowers by representatives of Exmouth's RNLI.

Nancy Thompson being given a card and flowers by representatives of Exmouth's RNLI.


A pensioner who began crocheting for the RNLI to ‘keep out of mischief’ raised £4,000 for the charity.

Experienced knitter, Nancy Thompson, 89, of Colvin Close, Exmouth, raised the cash by making and selling 519 crochet hats.

The retired businesswoman, who has been volunteering at the charity’s shop for 21 years, was celebrated by crew members and volunteers at the charity’s annual fish and chip dinner.

She said it came as a surprise to her that her hobby became a fundraiser.

“I enjoyed it. It kept me out of mischief, but I didn’t set out to do it,” she said.

“It is one of these things you do. It just happened and carried on.”

Nancy became involved with the RNLI when a rowing friend convinced her to volunteer for them. Although she has stopped crocheting due to arthritis in her wrists, she has no plans to give up her work in the shop.

Nancy was overwhelmed to be acknowledged by others.

She said: “The reception was a total surprise. They gave me a big thank-you card with over 60 signatures on it from volunteers and the crew.”

Coxswain Steve Hockings Thompson praised Nancy’s hard work.

He said: “We are so lucky that Nancy has raised this money for the station. She is exceptional with the amount she has single-handedly raised.

“Without people like Nancy, we would not be operational. It costs over £250,000 to run Exmouth lifeboat station annually. On behalf of all the crew and our families, we would like to thank Nancy for her tireless fundraising.”

The food at the event was supplied by Krispies fish and chip shop.

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