A warm sunny day greeted St Annes for the Carnival celebrations and the parade of the Carnival Queen. Ashton Gardens was bedecked with flags and bunting and arrayed with stalls of all shapes and sizes. The Masonic hall, now known locally as St Annes Palace, opened its doors to receive the Carnival Queen and her entourage. It also hosted members of Quadrant Lodge No 8044, who’s master Abdul Benashour was presenting a cheque for £300 to David Lowe, chairman of the Blackpool Branch of the Chernobyl Children’s Life Line (CCLL).
The link to this charity has been made through Jack Blackburn, a past master of Quadrant Lodge and a Past Provincial Senior Grand Warden of the Province of West Lancashire. Jack is also a member of Blackpool Rotary Club, who have been supporting CCLL for several years. When Jack approached the lodge members for further funding they were more than happy to support this worthy cause. Lodge treasurer Tony Hankinson was also on hand with the chequebook and David Lowe was mightily pleased with the donation.
CCLL have been providing holidays for children from the area affected by the infamous Chernobyl nuclear reactor explosion on 26 April 1986, which includes vast areas of Ukraine and Belarus. Some experts have predicted that the immediate area of the explosion won’t be fit for human habitation for nearly 20,000 years! The charity has been helping children from these areas since 1991 when founder, Victor Mizzi OBE, established it. Victor, who lives in Haslemere, Surrey, founded the charity to give child victims of the nuclear disaster recuperative breaks of four weeks in the UK, a commitment that continues to this day.
There are now several different branches (known as Links) across the country where children are hosted by local families and spend four weeks enjoying trips to major attractions. They also receive a full dental check-up and are well supported by back-up teams, which include welfare experts and interpreters. The next group of children will enjoy days out to Park View at Lytham, Blackpool Pleasure Beach, the Lake District and Fleetwood Town football ground, amongst other attractions.
Needless to say, providing this support is quite expensive and the overall cost for the next group will be in the region of £6,000, so David Lowe is always pleased to receive financial support from all sources. Please contact Jack Blackburn at Silverspoon1936@gmail.com for further information on donations and for the CCLL go to this link.