Banbury Lions Club member celebrates 50 years as volunteer

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A Banbury Lions Club member celebrates 50 years this week as a community volunteer in the town.

Vic Ince is celebrating the anniversary in conjunction with National Volunteers Week (June 1-7,) an annual celebration of the contribution millions of people make across the UK through volunteering.

Mr Ince, who is from Adderbury, joined Banbury Lions on June 1, 1970, and has played a huge role in organising many local events that have raised 'huge' sums of money for local charities.

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The events include the Horse Rides at Broughton Castle, the annual 'Children Singing for Children' concert (now run by Banbury Rotary Club), a Son et Lumiere at Broughton Castle, several Banbury Marathons and, perhaps most famously, the Old Time Music Hall. Created by Martin Blinkhorn and Graham Wilton, it ran from 1971 until well into the 1980's.

Vic Ince celebrates 50 years as a volunteer with the Banbury Lions ClubVic Ince celebrates 50 years as a volunteer with the Banbury Lions Club
Vic Ince celebrates 50 years as a volunteer with the Banbury Lions Club | other

This was an event that regularly saw Mr Ince both on the stage and busy behind the scenes.

He also organised the Diabetes Awareness Programme lectures, which were held at the Banbury Moat House Hotel – now the Banbury House Best Western.

Mr Ince was never shy to champion the work of the Banbury Lions abroad with early twinning visits to the Montdidier Club in France. The 1980s saw him take on a half marathon as part of his enthusiasm for fundraising.

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Then, in the year 2000, Mr Ince produced the concert at St Mary's Church called ‘Millennium Festival of Voices’ – a single choir with children from a large number of local schools to welcome the new millennium.

Vic Ince celebrates 50 years as volunteer with the Banbury Lions ClubVic Ince celebrates 50 years as volunteer with the Banbury Lions Club
Vic Ince celebrates 50 years as volunteer with the Banbury Lions Club | other

Mr Ince's milestone is unique in the club. His memories of the work he has achieved, in particular his year as president in 1999/2000, will be forever with him, as will the many stories he has to tell.

The current members congratulate him on his achievement and look forward to working with him for many years to come.

Lions president Graham Raven said: " I moved to Banbury Lions three years ago, but in this short time have appreciated Vic's undimmed enthusiasm and wise council in taking things forward.

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"The Lions motto is ‘we serve’ and along with all our members I congratulate Vic on his service over an astonishing 50 years. We look forward to celebrating with Vic and his wife Carol in person as soon as possible."

The Lions Club of Banbury was inaugurated in 1969, the local branch of Lions Clubs International, the largest Service Club in the World.

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