- Written by Katherine Nichol
- BBC News, Isle of Man
The Isle of Man’s Lieutenant-Governor and his wife have praised the dedication of the island’s “world-class” volunteers.
Sir John Lorimer and Lady Philippa are patrons of 69 charities, from Beach Buddies to the Royal British Legion.
Mrs Philippa said the generosity of people who gave so much of their time to charity work was “amazing”.
“They are the best volunteers in the world,” she said.
She goes on to say, “When you look at people doing work, and then you look at them doing charity work, and then you look at them again, they’re doing something else. ” he added.
“They’re not just volunteering for one thing, they’re volunteering for about five charities.”
Echoing this sentiment, Sir John praised people for their generous donations to charity, including topping the British Legion’s Poppy Appeal per capita in 2023.
“This shows that Manx people are incredibly generous,” he said.
Reflecting on the past 12 months, Sir John said the couple’s second year in their roles on the island had been an “amazing” year.
On the official side of the proceedings, he said the highlight was attending the coronation of Charles III at Westminster Abbey in London.
He was attending as a representative of the Isle of Man King and said it was an “extraordinary honor and privilege” to attend the ceremony alongside First Minister Alfred Cannan and others.
As for the island itself, he said the couple’s tour of the island’s 17 parishes has proven to be a good way to see what makes each community on the island “vibrant.” Ta.
He said his ambition to visit each primary school on the island was almost complete, and it was “interesting but also great fun” to meet so many young children and “amazing” teachers.
On a personal level, he said completing the Parish Walk was “very important and had quite a long-lasting effect on my legs in particular”.
Mrs Philippa said the couple had completed more than 300 sessions since completing their New Year’s swim on January 1, 2023, and that the cold water swim around the island’s coast had been a personal highlight. .
“I met some really interesting and fun people to swim with and saw all kinds of wildlife. I swam with a pod of dolphins and swam with minke whales off Port Skillion.” she said.
But the couple agreed that a trip to Calf of Man was a joint highlight, just before the summer season started.
Sir John said: “It just gave us some time, we were there for about 24 hours and there was virtually no one there except for the observers at the observatory.
“And we were able to spend some time learning what they were doing, especially in terms of bird calls. We were hearing the calls of short-billed shearwaters and Manx shearwaters.”
He said the island was in many ways a “microcosm of the rest of the island” and showed how lucky the islanders were.
“It was such a positive visit that I plan to visit again at a similar time next year to recharge a bit and prepare for a busy summer,” he added.
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