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Holyhead demolition prize raises more than £10,000 for charity

The demolition of the chimney stack at Prosperity Parc, Holyhead, has now been completed following a unique prize draw giving a lucky member of the public the opportunity to bring down the landmark, raising over £10,000 for the RNLI.

The winner Geraint Williams, originally from Anglesey and now living in St Asaph, enjoyed a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to join the team at Stena Line this Wednesday (20th March) and press the button to signal the bringing down of the Prosperity Parc chimney stack, with behind the scenes access to witness the demolition in real time.

The winner was joined on the day by representatives from Stena Line as well as members of the RNLI crew from Holyhead Lifeboat Station.

Geraint, a former North Sea commercial diver born and bred in Aberffraw had wife Lyn by his side as he pressed the button which changed the Holyhead landscape forever. He said:

‘I rarely win anything but when I saw the opportunity to be part of something so significant and support the RNLI, I had to enter. I knew so many people who work on the site especially during the boom days, it’s an iconic structure and helping to bring it down really has been something special.

‘My work in marine and diving services means that I regularly come into contact with the RNLI and can’t think of a better charity to benefit from the prize draw. I’m thrilled the draw raised so much money for charity and really am overwhelmed to have been given this privilege.’

Stena Line and the RNLI would like to thank all those who entered the prize draw. With over 900 entrants, the Crowdfunder surpassed its target of £10,000 in just seven days, raising invaluable funds for the organisation in memory of a much loved and highly respected member of Holyhead RNLI crew, Iwan Williams – who passed away last year.

All funds raised will go towards saving lives at sea to celebrate and commemorate Iwan’s long service and outstanding achievements and bravery as a RNLI volunteer at Holyhead and around the Anglesey coastline. For more information about the RNLI visit rnli.org

Holyhead RNLI volunteer coxswain Tony Price and RNLI volunteer Steph Price were present for the demolition. Tony says:

‘We are absolutely thrilled to have raised over £10,000 in this most unique way and are incredibly grateful to Stena for offering us this opportunity. Every penny will go towards ensuring our volunteer crew at Holyhead can continue saving lives at sea. The fact we’ve raised the money in Iwan’s memory is even more special and a fantastic legacy to a man who gave so much to our station. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Holyhead community for getting behind this fundraiser, we’re grateful to every single person who bought a ticket to win this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

‘A huge well done for Geraint for being chosen as the winner. It was a real pleasure to stand at his side today to watch him push a button which will change the Holyhead landscape forever. It is a moment I don’t think we’ll ever forget.’

Stena Line are working to draw up plans for a vibrant new future on Prosperity Parc, which will act as a hotbed of innovation, skilled jobs and global investment. Wednesday’s demolition of the chimney stacks reflects a key milestone in this next chapter of Prosperity Parc, clearing the site for works to commence.

Ian Davies, Head of UK Port Authorities for Stena Line said:

“We would like to express our huge congratulations to the winner of the prize draw. We have been humbled by the response from the local community. Raising the target amount in just seven days is a great testament to Iwan’s legacy and will provide critical support to the important work the RNLI does. Today is a landmark day for the future of Prosperity Parc and we are excited to continue to engage with the community as we bring forward this much needed investment.”

Anglesey Council Chief Executive, Dylan J Williams, said, “This is a positive milestone as both the County Council and Stena Line work in partnership to deliver the Anglesey Freeport project. It is good to see commitments turning into action and we look forward to seeing a planning application submitted for site redevelopment.

“Whilst this is a new chapter, we should not forget that sad day in 2009 when the old Anglesey Aluminium works closed, and employees discarded their hard hats as they left. We are now, thankfully, on the cusp of new investment and employment on this important and historic site.

“Together, Anglesey Council and Stena Line will work to ensure that Prosperity Parc now creates its own positive economic and social legacy. We hope to see it become an integral part of our Island’s regeneration and economic future, providing much needed local jobs for local people.”

Dylan J Williams added, “Today’s demolition of the old chimney was a real spectacle. I’m grateful to Stena Line and everyone who contributed to making the event safe, successful and such a great fundraiser for the RNLI.”

Anyone wishing to donate to Holyhead RNLI can visit: www.justgiving.com/page/holyhead-rnli-2024