THE volunteers who formed the lifeblood of Ormskirk's Red Cross Society are saddened their centre is to be sold.
Philippa Burford, 63, who first walked through the threshold of 40 Derby Street over thirty years ago, was sat in an Ormskirk cafe when her daughter broke the news of the sale to her.
The Aughton woman's first thoughts were then for 96-year-old Red Cross legend Jean Ensor, who sat on the committee that bought the property for £2,000 in 1960.
Although the Red Cross have recently written to Jean to explain their decision to sell the building where generations of volunteers spent so much time, she remains annoyed by the move.
Manchester-based chartered surveyors WT Gunson have listed the Victorian property for sale at around £175,000, or for rent at £12,000 per year.
The Derby Street Red Cross centre will be familiar to the hundreds of volunteers who gave up their Monday and Thursday evenings to teach first aid to everyone from schoolchildren to cub scouts and swimming pool attendants.
Jean Ensor, who lives on Blackmoss Lane, said: “This is awful, and I do not think we can find anywhere else as suitable in the town centre.
“I first became involved in the Red Cross over 70 years ago, and I remember when we bought the building on Derby Street in 1960.
“In the 1960s we went on to develop strong links with Ormskirk Hospital.
“I would go along to Derby Street every Monday night, and we also held open evenings on Thursdays.
“We also visited most of the schools in the area.”