Lions to celebrate centenary

Pictured (from left) gardening in Eslaford Gardens Chris Sharpe, resident, Lion David Chetwood, Lion Paul Sharpe and Lion Bob Coxhead.
Pictured (from left) gardening in Eslaford Gardens Chris Sharpe, resident, Lion David Chetwood, Lion Paul Sharpe and Lion Bob Coxhead.

Celebrations are being planned in the Sleaford area to mark 100 years, this year, since the founding of Lions Clubs International.

The Sleaford and district branch of the global goodwill organisation is set to honour the milestone, which is due to be reached on June 7.

Lions International was established in 1917 by a group of businessmen in Chicago to help the less fortunate in the city.

It has since grown to become the largest service club organisation in the world – its mission to ‘empower volunteers to serve their communities, meet humanitarian needs, encourage peace and promote international understanding through Lions clubs’.

On Sunday, June 11, the Sleaford and District Lions Club is planning to hold a Picnic in the Park event on the Recreational Ground, in Boston Road, to mark the centenary.

The event will run from 11am to 4pm and include activities and exhibitions for the young and old – the club encourages people to ‘just bring a picnic and join us’.

For more information, call 01476 575978 or 0845 833 9512.

Further afield, there will be other activities to celebrate Lions International’s 100th anniversary, such as a masked ball at Stoke Rochford Hall, near Grantham, and a ‘Bridge of Food and Lights’ across the Humber Bridge.

The Sleaford and District Lions Club was formed in May 1974 with 20 members (today, one founding member still attends club meetings and helps out with service activities when he can).

A spokesman said: “The club has, since then, been ever-present in the town and surrounding villages proudly living up to the organisation’s motto of ‘we serve’. The main purpose of Lions is community service, helping those people who are less fortunate than ourselves or have fallen on hard times. Every penny raised by the Lions is used for charity, nothing is taken for administration.”

The club raises money for worthy causes locally, nationally, and internationally through many activities, such as its ‘famous’ hotdogs at village fetes and the Sleaford Historic Car and Motorcycle Show, its Race Night held every October, and its Santa Sleigh at Christmas.

In addition to these fundraisers, the club also engages in social activities, such as meals, car treasure hunts, bowling, walks, concerts, and plays.

The local branch currently has 23 members, male and female, meeting at Sleaford Cricket Club, in London Road, on the first and third Tuesday of each month at 8pm.

Anyone interested in joining, should call 0845 833 9512 to find out more.