RNLI launches Mayday appeal in anticipation of its 'busiest summer' 

28 Apr 2021 News

Aerial image of the lifeboat sand art on Scarborough beach in aid of the RNLI's Mayday campaign.

Image credit: RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is calling on supporters to take part in the Mayday Mile to raise money for its Mayday appeal.

The Mayday Mile challenges people to cover one mile in any way they like, between Saturday 1 May to Monday 31 May, whilst raising funds.

RNLI expects that large numbers of people are planning to holiday on the British coast, and that summer 2021 will be its busiest yet. Given this, the charity states that more funds are needed.

Therefore it hopes to at least match, if not surpass, last year's campaign which raised over £100,000.
Indeed RNLI was busier than normal in 2020, when coronavirus imposed similar travel restrictions.  
Last summer RNLI lifeboat crews saved 140 lives. This marks an increase of 32% from the year previous after coronavirus travel restrictions led to people flocking to the seaside.
The charity also reported 42 lifeboat launches per day over the summer period, which is almost double the number launched throughout the rest of the year.
Overall RNLI's rescue figures for 2020 show that 349 lives were saved by the charity’s lifeboat crews and lifeguards throughout the year. 

Giant sand drawing 

To kick off the campaign, a group from the RNLI worked with expert sand artists, Sand in Your Eye, to create a giant sand drawing on Scarborough Beach. It is inspired by a Shannon Class lifeboat, the newest class of RNLI lifeboat.
Adam Sheader, volunteer crew member, RNLI Scarborough, said: “It’s amazing to see the number of people we rescued last year across the UK & Ireland represented by this installation - it makes me very proud to be a volunteer crew member. For almost 200 years, we have answered Mayday calls across the UK and Ireland, and my fellow crew members have often risked their lives to help rescue others.
“Heading down to the coast or out on the water during the summer is a great way to have fun and stay active. But, if you are not careful, it's a lot easier to get into trouble in the water than you might think. I hope seeing the lifeboat, and knowing the number on the bow represents someone like them, inspires people to answer our Mayday call - after all no one knows when they might need our help.
“Through The Mayday Mile, we’re hoping to raise enough funds to keep crews and lifeguards kitted and trained to deal with emergencies – and to come home safe themselves. So please answer our Mayday call and help us to get one step closer to the happy, fun, and safe summer which we all deserve this year!”


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