Okehampton and District Lions Club is hoping to attract new members to the club as it celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.

Lions membership among residents from neighbouring towns, such as Hatherleigh and North Tawton, has dropped slightly, so current members are working hard to encourage “new blood” to join the club, which supports local, national and international causes.

Throughout its 50-year existence Okehampton’s Lions Club has supported a wide range of local causes. The annual Lions Golf Day has run for 21 years and, during this time, raised a total of £120,000 for Little Bridge House, the Children’s Hospice South West home near Barnstaple. This year, the event will take place at Ashbury Manor House on July 3.

The Lions also provide practical help and often manage roadblocks for the town council at key events in the year’s calendar such as Remembrance Day and Mayor’s Procession.

The Okehampton and District Lions Club is just one of approximately 49,000 clubs worldwide. Internationally, there are around 1.4 million members across 208 countries.

The Lions Club was founded in 1917 by Melvin Jones, a Chicago businessman, who set up the first club to help tackle social problems caused by the First World War and industralisation.

Lions International is open to both men and women. Anyone wishing to join the club, should visit the website at www.okehamptonlions.org.uk/index.html or call 07964 152186.