Photos thanks to Mike Jukes (top) and Jimmy Baikovicius (bottom).

Ryde Rotary Club has been gifted more than a thousand pounds – thanks to a little help from my friends music legend Sir Paul McCartney.

President of the club, Mike Jukes, was handed a cheque by ex-Rotarian Phil Hancock at a meeting at Yelf’s Hotel on Tuesday (29).

Phil used to work as a sound engineer at London’s famous Abbey Road Studios and, at some point in the 1960s, was given a limited edition album by the former Beatles star.

Mike says it was not until recently that that record resurfaced again:

“Phil found the album during a clear out when he and his wife moved house and it made him think about an unfulfilled wager he had made with another former Ryde Rotarian, Mike Turner, now sadly deceased, to donate some money to Ryde Rotary.”

Recalling the deal, Phil then decided to do something about it and contacted Sir Paul.

He apparently told him of his plan to auction the album to raise funds and suggested that a signature on the sleeve would help increase its value.

Luckily, the Liverpudlian let it be known that he supported the idea:

“Sir Paul readily agreed and confirmed that he would be happy for the proceeds to be distributed to charities and good causes in the Ryde area.

“The amount received at auction enabled Phil Hancock to present a cheque for £1,500 and there were sufficient further funds for Phil to make generous donations to two other charities close to his heart.”

Mike admits the story is “quite bizarre” but says it is just the ticket for Ryde Rotary.

The Islander even wrote Sir Paul a letter thanking him but has yet to receive a response:

“I’m not surprised about that and I’m not sure how closely Phil Hancock still knows him… I understand from Phil that Sir Paul personally reads and appreciates this correspondence but I wouldn’t have expected to get a personal letter back from him, he’s a very busy man!”

The money donated to the club will now be distributed to local charities and some international causes.