Skegness Mayor launches new charity supporting bus display

He’s driven countless buses as a Stagecoach employee but now as the Mayor of Skegness, he’s appearing in quite a different capacity.

Coun Jim Carpenter today launched a promotional campaign supporting his two mayoral charities with the unveiling of a new vinyl bus livery.

The Mayor and Mayoress of Skegness Coun Jim Carpenter and Kath Cullen pictured by the new bus display.

The Mayor and Mayoress of Skegness Coun Jim Carpenter and Kath Cullen pictured by the new bus display.

Images of Coun Carpenter in his mayoral chains appear on either side of the bus alongside branding for the St Barnabas Hospice and Boston Women’s Aid - his two chosen charities for the coming year.

Launching the new advertisements at Tower Esplanade this morning, Coun Carpenter said:“Hopefully anybody seeing this vehicle riding around the Skegness area will donate to what I think are two worthwhile charities and the bus will have served its purpose,”

Representatives of each charity also attended to show their thanks to Coun Carpenter and Stagecoach in raising the profile of their cause.

Deputy team leader at the St Barnabas Hospice Louise Garwood explained how Coun Carpenter’s fundraising efforts would be used to help terminally ill patients at home during their final days.

“We want to ensure that the people of Skegness have access to the best quality palliative care in their own homes” she said.

“It’s also about letting people know that they have a choice about where they can die and it doesn’t have to be in hospital.”

Boston Women’s Aid, which provides the victims of domestic abuse with support and security through their time of need, will also be benefiting from the mayor’s year of fundraising.

Charity manager Lynn Mitchell says the offer couldn’t have come at a better time.

“Boston Women’s Aid are absolutely thrilled to be chosen by the new mayor one fo his two charities,” she said.

“We are also really grateful to Stagecoach for running with the ball and supporting us as well.

“What we are so please about is the chance it has given us to highlight to the victims of domestic abuse in the Skegness that there’s help available for them.”

The charity has been looking after troubled families for the past 27 years and in 2012 alone helped 59 women and 78 children in the local area.

Lynn says there has been a ‘huge increase’ in demand for the charity following changes to the benefits system - but despite this need, her funding has gone down.

“We are constantly looking for new streams of funding nut we are very reliant on public donations,” she said.

Stagecoach has offered to produce the special bus advertising in honour of Coun Carpenter’s long history with the bus company to wish him and his charities success during the mayoral year.

Operations manager at Skegness depot Mark Mageean said: “Jim has been a long serving Stagecoach employee and we wanted to do something to recognise the fact that we are proud he has become mayor and also to help his charities.”

The special bus will serve the number one route around Skegness or the number two route, which travels up the coast between Skegness and Chapel St Leonards.

Coun Carpenter hopes it will inspire more people to donate to the two causes, which have so far already taken their share of £1646 raised at his Mayor’s Ball last month.

He has thanked all the business for donating prizes for the raffle and auction and those that took part.