RNLI shop becomes best in the country with record sales

The team at Whitby's RNLI shop
The team at Whitby's RNLI shop

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.