Whitby’s RNLI shop has been named the most successful in the country after exceeding £3 million in takings since it opened in 1958.
The shop was founded by Eric Thompson and opened as part of the Whitby RNLI Lifeboat Museum, with takings averaging around £500.
Eric’s son Pete Thomson then started helping in the shop in 1964 and annual takings reached about £700.
In 1985, Pete took over and became curator of the museum. He also looked after the shop and yearly takings reached £28,000.
Alison Thomson started to volunteer in the shop in 1989 and also took over the role of ordering stock. She was made manager in 1993 and annual takings rose to £58,000.
In 1999 accumulated shop sales since 1958 reached £1 million and in 2007 sales exceeded £2 million.
In 2008 the shop was fully refurbished and takings exceeded £200,000 in one year. Now the shop has passed its latest milestone, raising an amazing £3 million since 1958.