College students and staff act of kindness supports St Abbs Lifeboat donations

Students and staff from Edinburgh College’s Engineering team have shown an act of kindness which will help the St Abbs Independent Lifeboat to continue receiving much-needed donations.

The independent lifeboat at St Abbs, which depends on donations from the community, visitors and other partners, sadly had its long-term donation box stolen earlier in the year.

Upon hearing this news, Engineering lecturer Terry Healy wanted to do something to help and replace the donation box with something more durable and as thief-proof as possible.

Terry approached Curriculum Manager Ross Milligan to ask if he could take this on as a project using materials no longer required for other College initiatives and enlist the help of his Fabrication and Welding students.

Terry, alongside Engineering technician Kevin Hunter, then met with a St Abbs Independent Lifeboat trustee for a site visit and to discuss their idea for fabricating a new donation box to be placed at the site.

Following a positive meeting and an agreed design in place, Terry and Kevin began the manufacturing process with their students at Midlothian Campus.

Lecturer Terry Healy said: “I have had a long affiliation with St Abbs having completed open water diver training there and many more dives there after qualifying. I wanted to do something to give back to the area and support this life-saving charitable cause.

“We tasked ourselves and our students with upcycling an old electric car charging point into the design agreed with St Abbs. Firstly, the students used cutting techniques to add a coin entry slot to the front face of the donation box, as well as manufacturing a weather guard around the coin entry slot to ensure the box remains watertight it was fixed at its location.

“They then added a rear access door with additional security measures added to make the door more secure.

“To complete the box, our students drew a sailboat onto a stainless-steel sheet before free-hand plasma cutting the sailboat to shape before adding a headsail and mainsail giving the boat a 3D-look of wind filling each sail.”

Sadly, due to the ongoing pandemic, manufacturing of the donation box had to cease during lockdown, and installation was put on hold until last week, when Terry and Kevin worked alongside the Lifeboat crew to install the new donation box at St Abbs Harbour car park.

In another act of kindness, McGregor’s Signs – a Dalkeith-based sign manufacturer contributed two Edinburgh College branded signs to signify the work done by College students and staff.

If you find yourself visiting St Abbs, please consider making a kind donation for a very worthwhile cause.

Congratulations to Terry, Kevin and our students for this amazing and kind work.

If you have any acts of kindness you’d like to share with us, email – we’d love to hear from you.