New Billingshurst club president launches campaign in drive for new members

The new president of the Billingshurst and District Lions Club has initiated a campaign to encourage more people to become members in order to further help the community.

Monday, 16th August 2021, 12:20 pm

Richard Melchio – who took up office on Thursday, July 1 – is hoping to bring in people of all ages to use their skills, knowledge and ideas to help raise funds for worthwhile causes in the area.

Richard said: “Since joining the Lions, I have met, without exception, a bunch of very likeable, well meaning and fun people, who are only too eager to go out of their way to help, particularly the young and vulnerable. I find it’s always more enjoyable to give than receive.”

The club – which says it is still young at heart after 46 years – has produced a leaflet as part of the drive for new members, particularly with all the building development in Billingshurst bringing new people into the area.

Billingshurst and District Lions Club's outgoing president, Viv Diggens, congratulating Richard Melchio with the now familiar elbow bump, as he hands over the president’s chain of office for the new Lion year SUS-211008-111808001

To spread the word, members are including the leaflets into a book of every customer to its Jengers Mead charity second hand bookshop which has helped raise substantial amounts in the past 18 years.

The Lions also raise significant funds through its charity golf day, Christmas carolling with Santa’s ‘flying bedstead, and at schol and village fetes.

The club says it prides itself on providing help and assistance in the community, and its primary objectives include fundraising, offering financial support to any local person or organisation with a specific need, and providing financial and practical help to primary schools, pre-schools, residential homes and community schemes.

Richard says there are many ways to get involved: “There is ample scope to choose and to further the activity you would enjoy doing in bringing your skills, experience and new ideas to the club, but, most importantly, doing what you would like to do in the time that you have available.”

The club says positives to get from joining include satisfaction from using your skills and experience to benefit the community, pleasure in seeing the result of your efforts, and the chance to meet new friends.

Richard said: “It’s not all work and no play – the club normally has a full and varied social calendar, including visits to places of interest, evening meals, skittles, walks and a casual lunchtime get-together once a month.”

To join, call Viv Diggens on 01403 752068 or visit