For the Year Ending 31st December 1921
In presenting the 55th Annual Report the Committee are pleased to state that the work of the Brigade has carried on with unabated interest. Fortunately there is no wreck service to report, watches have been kept when necessary and the monthly drills have been fairly well attended.
On October 22nd a strong gale from the North East, and a heavy sea caused a watch to be kept from 6 p. m. till 2 a. m. when the wind abated. The watch was well attended.
In April classes were formed for instructions in Rocket Drill and Ambulance. The classes were well attended for a time, but the attendance gradually fell off and the classes had to be finally abandoned.
On March 19th an interesting ceremony took place at Sunderland in connection with the St John’s Ambulance Brigade: the long and efficient service medals were given by the Grand Prior of the Order of St John were presented by Lieut-Colonel C. B. Palmer, Commissioner for this Northern District to Divisional Superintendent J. W. Buckland and First Officer C. E. Shaw, of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade Division, and Superintendent J. L. Fitzpatrick, of Readhead’s Works Division.
On Saturday, July 10th the Brigade attended a Church Parade arranged by the Comrades of the Great War Association. It was held in the South Park and was well attended by the Howitzer Brigade, Cadets, the Mayor and Mayoress and many of the Councillors and general public.
October the 2nd was the centenary of the death of Willie Wouldhave, the inventor of the lifeboat. The day was marked by a special service at St Hilda’s Church and the unveiling of a Memorial in the Churchyard. The service was attended by the Mayor and Corporation, the Volunteer Life Brigade and many representatives of the different public bodies in the town.
On the 19th of November the Brigade was inspected by Capt. Aplin, R. N., his Majesty’s Inspector of the Life Saving Apparatus, Brigades and Companies. The Brigade went through the Rocket drill under the command of Capt. Page, after which the Inspecting Officer presented long service medals given by the King for 20 years good and efficient service in the Brigade to the following:- Capt. C. E. Shaw, Brigadesman James Thompson. There was also a medal for Thomas Readford, who did not live to get it; this was received by his widow.
We regret the loss of two of our members by death during the year: Thomas Readford and Edward Thompson. They were both good Brigadesmen and constant attenders in stormy weather.
It will be noticed from the Balance Sheet that there is an overdraft at the bank amounting to £89 19s 3d as against £86 13s 8d at the beginning of the year. This is largely due to the fact that owing to the depression in trade we have not made our customary appeal for subscriptions to our Honorary Members. We now feel the necessity of asking our friends to assist us in reducing our liability. The Hon. Treasurer, Capt. Page, will be pleased to receive donations. It should be pointed out that an Annual Subscription of One Guinea entitles the donor to be an Honorary Member.