Former fisherman Cedric, who led hundreds of thousands of walkers through the quicksand of the bay and helped raise millions for charity, died Friday – just weeks after losing his devoted wife Olive.
Cédric held the title of 25th guide from 1963 to 2019, when Michael Wilson was named his successor.
Michael and his partner Joanne, on behalf of the entire Guide Over Sands Trust curating team, said on Saturday: “No words can be written to explain how we all feel.
“Yesterday evening, at the age of 88, our beloved Cédric Robinson closed his eyes for the last time, Cédric is now at peace and is with his wife Olive who he missed so much.
“We ask that family and friends have some privacy during this difficult time.
“In 2019, Michael took over from Cedric Robinson as guide and Michael said ‘these are big shoes to fill’; the best memory this year is when Cedric joined us for the naturist walk and when we asked him about his ‘he was getting out of his tractor, he just replied “no, I have the best view from here!”
“It was and always will be an honor to be your friend, Cedric had a huge following and we know this news will make the community shed tears as you read this.
“Cédric joined us this year on the sand even though he was retired, he continued as long as he could; now Cédric it’s time to put your sandy feet back and keep an eye on us from up there .
“Your team of old and new marshalls have thought about you Cédric’s world.
“Charlie horse will be groomed with Katie your cat, don’t mess around too much up there, find Olive and be at peace.”
“We love you Cedric and thank you for everything and hold on tight.
“Be at peace and sleep well.”
Tributes have poured in since Cédric’s death.
“Cedric was a truly remarkable man,” said his biographer Lindsay Sutton, who wrote his life story “Les Sables du Temps” in 2019.
“He never really got over losing her. He loved Olive and he was devastated when she passed. It broke his heart.”
Cedric, who was appointed MBE in 1999 for his work in Morecambe Bay, had been in poor health for some time.
He only retired from the historic role of Queen’s Guide to the Sands in 2019, at the age of 86. He had held the title, which dates back to 1548, for a record 56 years and received the princely sum of £ 15 a year.
Cedric’s unparalleled knowledge of Morecambe Bay has protected thousands of charity walkers every summer, helping them avoid dangerous quicksand and dangerous canals.
Each walk took over three hours and he always kept a good pace in front of his supporters until he was eighty.
He has also guided many celebrities through the perilous sands, including Melvyn Bragg, Bill Bryson, Sir Harry Secombe, Judith Chalmers, Victoria Wood, Sir Ian McKellen, Matthew Kelly, David Bellamy and Chef Rick Stein.
He even obtained the royal command to accompany Prince Philip on a crossing of the bay on horseback and carriage in 1985.
“The two became good friends after this adventure,” said Lindsay, who accompanied Cedric on hundreds of walks across the bay as an assistant.
“He knew every inch of this bay and he lived for it. He couldn’t wait to get out there to guide charitable fundraising groups every two weeks throughout the summer.
“He had been a fisherman on foot, on horseback and in cart and then in tractor since the age of 14, fishing for shrimps, mussels and flatfish. His father and grandfather were both fishermen before him. Surprisingly, Cédric has never been by boat. once and he said he didn’t like it.
The Duke of Edinburgh asked Cedric to act as his guide when he crossed the sands of Morecambe Bay from Silverdale to Kent’s Bank with a horse and carriage in 1985 – the first time in over 130 years.
“He and Olive led a fairly frugal life – their cottage had neither central heating nor double glazing.
“Olive was nine years older than Cedric and over the past few years she suffered from memory problems and he more or less became her full time caregiver. He always called her ‘my beautiful Olive’.
“During his tenure as Queen’s Guide to the Sands, he pioneered Fundraising Walks Through Bay and took thousands of walkers through Arnside Bay to Grange-over-Sands .
“He realized the fundraising potential of the bay and has grown steadily since then. He is responsible for the immense sums of money, millions, raised for charity.
“I first went with him over 30 years ago and have done it hundreds of times since. Surprisingly, Cedric had triple heart bypass surgery in his forties, but he was as strong as a beef.
“He led a very healthy life, eating fresh fish and sand fire. He had a horse, cattle and chickens. He didn’t travel – he never went abroad. He once said. that he had taken Olive to Scarborough, they had enjoyed themselves, but he preferred Morecambe.
“When I wrote the book I saw it as a labor of love. It was the testimony of a truly remarkable man – the last of his kind.”
Cedric received an honorary degree from Lancaster University in 1996.
In 2013 he was awarded an honorary scholarship from the University of Cumbria, and a year later he was awarded the honorary freedom of Lancaster.
And in 2013, Cédric also won the Ambassador Award at the Visitor newspaper Sunshine Awards.
A spokesperson for Morecambe Lifeboat said: “We are saddened to learn that our friend Cédric Robinson has passed away at the age of 88.
“Cedric has dedicated his life to Morecambe Bay leading over six thousand charity walks and raising an incredible amount of money for charity.
“As a station, we were honored that Cédric attended our recent christening ceremony for our inshore lifeboat. We will always remember Cédric for his sense of humor, which has never left him.
Steve Wilson, Lifeboat Operations Manager, said, “Cedric has been a huge supporter of Morecambe RNLI, bringing together several thousand people to support us over the years.
“He has also featured Morecambe RNLI in several of his books and attended most of our special occasions, bringing his unmistakable sense of humor and extensive bay experience. He will be sadly missed by all crew.”
“Cedric, find your Olive, put your feet up and watch over your beloved Morecambe Bay to ensure everyone’s safety.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with his friends and family at this sad time.”
Bay Search & Rescue said, “The Bay has lost its greatest friend and advocate, a man who cared for, respected, and educated the thousands of people he guided through her.
“We offer our condolences to the family and friends of Cédric Robinson MBE.
“Cedric helped BSAR in the late 1990s by finding the team its first base in the old fire station of the former Kent’s Bank Hotel, Grange over Sands.
“His passing is a huge loss to the region and all who knew him, we are honored to have known him.”
Cedric’s Marches have raised thousands of pounds for charity each year, including Lancaster’s St John’s Hospice, which paid tribute by stating: “Everyone in St John’s Hospice sends their love and support to Cedric Robinson’s family.
“Cedric has led many walks through the sand, guiding hundreds of our supporters to safety every year. He will be sorely missed.”
Cédric and Olive leave five children.