A MAN who has ‘dedicated his life’ to helping people cross the treacherous Morecambe Bay sands has been made a freeman of the city of Lancaster.
Cedric Robinson MBE, of Grange-over-Sands, has been granted the highest honour Lancaster City Council can bestow, in honour of 50 years of being a royally-appointed Queen’s Guide to the Sands.
He was recommended for the honour by Coun June Ashworth, as her last act as mayor of the city.
Coming from a family of fishermen, Mr Robinson, 81, spent time cockle picking as a youngster and as a result was asked to consider the guiding role.
He took it on in 1963 and over the years has led more than 500,000 people from one side of the bay to the other.
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Groups of up to 500 at a time flock to Arnside, where the walks to Kents Bank begin - and famous faces to have taken part include Rick Stein, Ade Edmondson and Prince Philip, who crossed the bay in 1985 by horse and carriage. Mr Robinson, who has no plans to retire, said: “I have known nothing other than the sands and I love them.”
“They just draw me. As long as I feel good I’ll keep going. People still have a job keeping up with me – I’m not a slow walker!”
Coun Ashworth said: “His dedication and enthusiasm to guiding people across such a unique part of the British Isles has been unstinting, and in doing a job he loves he has helped to raised millions of pounds for charity.
“He does his job for no financial reward, but simply for his love of the sands of Morecambe Bay.”