Ambassador has unique flag to fly for children’s cause

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BUSINESSMAN Mal Nicholson has been appointed as an ambassador of the Sailors’ Children’s Society charity – and has a unique flag to fly from his restored sloop Spider T to recognise his appointment.

His role means he’ll be flying the flag wherever Spider T sails, to raise awareness of the work done by the Hull-based charity, which has been looking after seafarers’ children since 1821.

He was asked to take on the role when Spider T, which is moored at Keadby, took part in this year’s Jubilee Pageant on the Thames – easily the largest vessel in the historic flotilla.

Mal said: “The society has never had a flag until now, and I’m pleased to have the only one. I was proud to fly it as we sailed up the Thames. Wherever we sail we shall fly the flag to raise awareness of the charity and the work it does, looking after 400 children up and down the country.

“They have in common that they come from seafaring families which have fallen on hard times. The society helps with books, clothes, holidays and finance for school and university. It’s a great safety net,” said Mal, who runs Trentside Classic and Sportscar, based in Burringham High Street.

“I’m really proud to have the society’s only flag aboard Spider T,” he added.

Built in 1926, the 200-ton Spider T is the last survivor of a type of working vessel built to carry goods up and down England’s east coast.

Mal saved her from being scrapped at the 11th hour, and has earned interest from around the world as a ship of global significance.

In 2011 she was awarded runner-up for the ‘flagship of the year’ award by National Historic Ships.