Brightlingsea shanty group The Motley Crew took to the town’s centre on Saturday morning (March 5) to to sing for Ukraine – and raised over £900.
Decked out with specially-made scarves in Ukraine flag colours, the crew – who’ve been singing together for over 20 years – sang their traditional tunes outside the Brewer’s Arms pub while their SWAGS (Shanty Wives and Girlfriends) rattled collecting tins.
In just over an hour on a cold, damp morning, a total of £915.03 was collected for DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal – a lot of it in £10 and £20 notes.
“We were just amazed by the response,” said Motley Crew bosun David Bridle. “People were almost queuing up to donate – it just shows how much people want to help the people of Ukraine.’
The collection was made more poignant when a young Ukrainian came up and thanked the crew profusely – saying that his parents were still in the war-torn country. “We were all deeply touched,” said David. “What we were doing was such a small thing – but his obvious concern for his family and his heartfelt thanks left us all deeply touched.”
The latest fund-raising effort isn’t the first time the crew has helped good causes. It’s raised around £25,000 for the RNLI and last year recorded ‘Get that Jab and Go’ – a shanty promoting Covid vaccinations – for the NHS.