29 December 2017

    The idea of a commemorative book outlining the Lighthouse Club Hong Kong’s 30 years in existence was mooted at a committee meeting as far back as 2011, maybe even earlier. Having been planned, originally, to coincide with the Club’s 30th anniversary last year, some of you may be wondering why it took another year to actually have the book in print! Well, there’s only two words to answer that: John Battersby.

    Committing himself to writing the book, John asked Janey Rogers to follow up with the Regional branches for their contributions in June 2015. A variety of stories, of differing styles and lengths, started trickling in and Janey realized that she was going to have to do some serious editing. John, in the meantime, had an idea of what he wanted to write about but, as we are all aware, absolutely no time in which to do it.

    And so, at the beginning of 2016, Janey was “volunteered” to research and write the whole book. The starting point being none other than Eddie Ward, the founder “father” of the Lighthouse Club. We’re sure that most people have heard that the Lighthouse Club was formed back in 1956 in the UK. What may not be known is that Eddie, among others, was attending a plant exhibition arranged by the Ministry of Public Buildings and Works at Gosforth Park, Newcastle Upon Tyne in the North East of England. At that time, Eddie was Managing Director of Auto Diesels, which was fortunate for the exhibitors as he was able to supply portable generating sets to overcome a sudden lack of electricity due to a power cut at the exhibition site. This demonstration of camaraderie, this “consideration for others” is what led to most of the exhibitors, among them Eddie Ward, deciding to form a club which could meet in between exhibitions and continue to share the friendly, co-operative spirit despite being in competition with each other.

    We know the rest of the story: a group of exhibitors were staying at the Rex Hotel in Whitley Bay, south of Newcastle, and trying to decide on a name for their new Club when one of them happened to look out of the window – and straight at St Mary’s Lighthouse.

    Some 61 years later, the Lighthouse Club in the UK, the Construction Industry Charity, thrives, with 21 regional clubs in England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic. Some 16.5 million Pounds Sterling has been distributed to 15,500 construction workers and their families.

    Hong Kong’s story is only half as long as that of the UK but its activities are nonetheless noteworthy. Currently, around HK$2,000,000 is being disbursed every year around the region to a variety of people in need. 100% of donations received goes towards helping people within the construction industry. Every dollar from the sale of this book also goes towards our Benevolent Trusts. We look forward to receiving your orders!


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    About The Lighthouse Club, 30th Anniversary in Hong Kong and Asia!