Byline: Countdown to Christmas with RNLI advent ‘prize-winner’ calendar
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This year in the lead up to Christmas the RNLI is set to launch its on-line advent calendar. The charity is inviting people to visit its website ( from 1–25 December for a chance to win a two-night break for two at The Lifeboat College in Poole* – a residential, waterfront venue.

The online advent calendar, which is a first for the RNLI, is due to launch on 1 December and aims to give people an insight into what goes on inside the charity that saves lives at sea.

Head of Central Fundraising Richard Popper says:

‘We decided to create a fun and festive way to learn more about the charity in the lead-up to Christmas – traditionally a time when people think about giving to charities. We wanted to remind everyone that volunteer lifeboat crews across the UK and Ireland are on-call 365 days of the year, and for the first time this year there will also be one team of RNLI lifeguards on duty over the Christmas period patrolling Boscombe’s new surf reef.

‘So when people are sitting down enjoying their Christmas lunch, RNLI crews are ready to respond whenever needed – sometimes having to miss their Chirstmas pudding!’

He added:

‘People will be able to visit the website each day and test their knowledge of the RNLI while getting into the festive spirit. Each window will display a different aspect of the charity from lifeboats to the charity’s national SOS day in on 29 January 2010. It will also give people the chance to link to other interactive pages on our website, like our crew pager alerter function, which shows when lifeboats are launched, or our RNLI shop to get last minute gifts and cards.’

Everyday during the run up to Christmas people will have a chance to enter the competition to win the break for two at The Lifeboat College, which is based at the charity’s headquarters in Poole, Dorset. Opened in July 2004, the Lifeboat College is the home of RNLI training – with 60 bedrooms that all have stunning waterside views of Poole harbour.

Notes to editors *The prize includes a two-night stay for two people at The Lifeboat College in Poole, Dorset, including breakfast.


Byline: Charity receives major accolade for excellence
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Three Royal National Lifeboat Institution lifesavers attended the British Quality Foundation UK Excellence Awards at the Intercontinental hotel (London) last night (Thursday 22 October) to receive the Recognised for Excellence award on behalf of the RNLI. The charity scored a five-star rating in its award category – a rare achievement for a first-time entrant.

The three RNLI lifesavers, Dave Turnbull (Swanage RNLI mechanic), Mike Grocott (Bournemouth RNLI lifeguard manager) and Janet Kelly (Tower RNLI station manager) received the award at a ceremony that was attended by HRH The Princess Royal and presided over by Alistair McGowan.

The award was made in recognition of:

  • The competence, motivation and clarity of focus that RNLI people possess
  • The lifesaving, preventative and societal differences the RNLI makes
  • The way the charity constantly adapts and strives to improve

Anjie Rook, RNLI Special Projects Manager, who manages the continuous improvement strategy for the charity explains:

‘The RNLI is extremely proud to receive this award as it is a reflection of our approach to continuous improvement. The charity’s people, both volunteers and staff, and all our processes and systems, are achieving our aim of saving lives at sea. Importantly it also shows we focus and learn by reflecting upon our results and asking how we can do things better – constantly reviewing to improve.’

Mark Bell, Levels of Excellence Manager at the BQF adds:

‘Achieving the award at the top five-star level is a great achievement, even more so as this was the RNLI’s first submission. Excellence is clearly well embedded in the culture of the RNLI, and I hope that they continue their journey of excellence.’

Notes to Editors


1. HRH The Princess Royal shakes hands with Dave Turnbull, Swanage RNLI mechanic and Anjie Rook, RNLI Special Projects Manager, with Adam Ryder (EDF Energy) looking on.

2. RNLI representatives L-R, Mike Grocott (Bournemouth lifeguard manager), Janet Kelly (Tower station manager) and Dave Turnbull (Swanage mechanic), receive the award from Melissa Rancourt (EFQM Director, Brussels).

Information about the award to the RNLI

  • In awarding the award at the five-star level, the assessors highlighted the following key organisational strengths: 
  • Leaders have developed a systematic planning and strategy process which produces plans over a 20 year horizon at appropriate levels within the organisation, and are actively involved in the management system
  • Senior leaders are actively involved with all customer groups
  • A clearly articulated set of Purpose, Vision and Values with which policy and strategy are aligned
  • A comprehensive competency framework is in place across the Operations directorate
  • A systematic approach to managing finances is evidenced by the comprehensive budgeting and reporting systems which cut across all aspects of the business and through all layers
  • Staff course satisfaction with training has significantly beaten target and been sustained at a high level for over 3 years
  • RNLI has obviously considered many approaches to improving its environmental impact such as ground source heats pumps in all new lifeboat stations, solar collectors on lifeguard units and is beginning to develop measures and performance data based on these activities

Information about British Quality Foundation (BQF)

The BQF, a not-for- profit membership foundation is the primary source of information for organisations in the UK looking to excel in their market and in their business. BQF is the custodian of the EFQM Excellence Model and runs the UK Excellence Award. Founded in 1993 by the DTI and UK businesses leaders, BQF is now the UK hub of excellent organisations of all sizes in private, public and voluntary sectors. The British Quality Foundations Recognised for Excellence awards is based on the EFQM Excellence Model.

The EFQM (originally called European Foundation for Quality Management) was founded in 1988 by leaders from fourteen companies who were convinced that a new membership organisation, based in Europe, was necessary to promote higher standards of management through shared knowledge and mutual recognition. Subsequently the mission and membership base of EFQM has been extended, as enthusiasm for its values and frameworks grew in the public sector, into small and medium sized enterprises, and to other organisations around the world.

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact Julia Sylvester, RNLI Public Relations Officer on 01202 663184 or 01202 336789 or email


Byline: A marathon, a cross-channel swim, an education presenter and a burlesque show – four very different ventures, but all undertaken by one person and for one purpose; to raise funds for the RNLI, the charity that saves lives at sea.
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Now, the RNLI is awarding London-born Chantal Carr with an Individual Supporter Award for her unfaltering dedication to raising funds and awareness of the charity’s lifesaving work. 

Chantal, from Edmonton, North London, has run two marathons in aid of the charity, an interest in which she inherited from her father Bob Woollett, who sadly passed away in June 2007. Since then, she has progressed to attempting a cross-channel swim – a gruelling and dangerous experience which sadly ended only seven miles from the French coast. 

Not content with just raising funds, Chantal is also helping teach a younger generation about the RNLI, having signed up as a Volunteer Education Presenter, visiting schools and youth groups to talk about the RNLI’s work. A working mum with two young sons, Chantal realises the importance of teaching others about how to stay safe on or near the water.

And, in a first for the RNLI, Chantal now performs around the country in a burlesque show in the guise of Bettie Wishes – a unique fundraising venture that has seen her and her friends performing their cheeky show in a number of pubs and clubs around the country.

She says: ‘My dad was a great supporter of the RNLI and wherever we went on holiday we would visit the lifeboat station and shop. We had no direct links to the sea, living in London, but my dad knew the importance of the lifeboats and the courage of the volunteer crew members; he taught my sister and I to appreciate that.

‘When he died five years ago, I set up a Forever by the Sea tribute fund for him. The great thing about the tribute fund is that all my Dad’s friends and family can give to it in whichever way suits them best; not all of them are as mad as me and want to run marathons!’

Gemma Nightingale, Legacy and In Memoriam Co-ordinator, said: ‘Chantal is an example of what is great about our volunteers; selfless, committed and courageous. The £4,500 she has raised for the RNLI by crossing the channel and her numerous marathons make her an inspiration to all. Furthermore, her enthusiasm in educating young people and igniting people’s interest in our charity makes her a true ambassador the RNLI.’

The award is announced today on London Lifeboat Day, the RNLI’s fundraising day where 200 fundraisers hit the streets of London to rattle buckets and raise awareness of the four lifeboat stations in the capital – which are based at Tower, Chiswick, Gravesend and Teddington. 

The award will be presented to Chantal at the RNLI’s annual awards ceremony at the Barbican Centre in London on 23 May, 2013.

Notes to editors

• The RNLI’s annual presentation of awards takes place at the Barbican Centre in London on 23 May. Medals for gallantry are presented to crew, volunteers and lifeguards. Fundraisers and corporate partners are also recognised for their contribution to the charity.
• A short film about Chantal’s story will be available on the RNLI’s Press Centre after the awards ceremony on 23 May.
• Other recipients of RNLI Supporter Awards will feature on RNLI social media channels in the coming weeks, and will use the hashtag #ProudOfOurCrowd. 

Media contacts

For further information, please contact:
• Lauren Hockey, Public Relations Officer, on 01202 336194 or by email at
• Tim Ash, Public Relations Manager (London and the East), on 0207 6207 7426 or 07785 296252 or by email at
• Philly Byrde, Press Officer (London and the East), on 0207 6207 7425 / 07786 668825 or by email at


Byline: RNLI, the charity that saves lives and energy
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The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is taking new measures to become more environmentally friendly with the help of over 200 energy monitoring devices.

The energy monitors have been donated to the charity free of charge by company Current Cost and will be distributed to the 235 RNLI lifeboat stations around the UK and Ireland over the next six months.

By installing a monitor in a station, staff and volunteers will be able to identify where energy is being wasted.

The monitors form part of the charity’s push to become more energy efficient, which will also help to free up vital funds.

Jo Jones, Environmental Manager at the RNLI, said: ‘The RNLI is working towards balancing its lifesaving work with its environmental responsibility.

‘The added benefit to this is that the RNLI can potentially save money in the process, which is a huge incentive. Our aim is to change habits towards energy use across the charity to reduce consumption.’

The new energy monitors will show how much electricity is being used in the station and what appliances cost the most to run.

Users can also monitor their energy spend over a period of months to help them identify where savings can be made.

Martin Dix, founder and director of Current Cost, has been a long-time supporter of the RNLI.

Mr Dix said: ‘I am immensely pleased that we can support the RNLI using our energy monitor. It’s a device that will continually help them to save money, and of course reduce their environmental impact.’

The RNLI has also been looking into the cost effectiveness of using renewable and low carbon technologies at lifeboat stations.

Last month, the charity turned on its first wind turbine in Aith, Shetland.

Notes to Editors

  • Current Cost is a business that began in 2004. It aims to change people’s habits when it comes to energy.
  • Current Cost has partnerships with the government, the EU, leading utility companies and NGOs across the UK and worldwide.
  • For more information go to

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact Joanna Quinn, Public Relations Officer on 01202 663510 or email or contact RNLI Public Relations on 01202 336789.


Byline: As new RNLI lifeguards take to the shingle at Littlehampton on Saturday 4 May, they will do so in the knowledge that they are looking after the 200th beach to be patrolled by the charity.
Page Content: Run on behalf of Arun District Council, the RNLI service will see two beach lifeguard units stationed at the town’s main beach near Harbour Park and near to the East Beach café. Lifeguards will be equipped with the latest water rescue and casualty care equipment, including rescue tubes, spinal boards and defibrillators.

Senior Lifeguard Manager Darren Lewis said: ‘Today is a proud day for the RNLI in Littlehampton. As the charity that saves lives at sea, we are delighted to be establishing our 200th lifeguarded beach in a town that has a long-held association with the RNLI. Building on the expertise we have developed through 12 years of providing beach patrols, our new lifeguards have been training hard in preparation for the season’s opening on Saturday. They will work closely with our colleagues at the lifeboat station to provide a seamless rescue service from the beach to the open sea.

‘The service will be run under the watchful eye of Lifeguard Supervisor Oliver Cona, who already saves lives as a volunteer crew member on the Littlehampton lifeboat.’

After a period of intensive training in rescue techniques and casualty care, lifeguards will patrol both beaches at weekends from 4 – 25 May, then daily until 8 September. They will be on hand from 10am to 6pm to provide beach safety advice and first aid, as well as assisting anyone who gets into difficulty in the water.

Nigel Lynn, Chief Executive at Arun District Council said: ‘This is great news for the local community and for the thousands of tourists who visit Littlehampton each year, and is the result of a great partnership between the RNLI and Arun District Council.

‘We are extremely proud to be the 200th beach to be patrolled by the RNLI, a fantastic charity which helps to save hundreds of lives every year.’

The RNLI began first provided lifeguarding services in south west England in 2001, and in the following years the service has steadily expanded across the UK and Ireland. In 2012 RNLI lifeguards responded to 14,519 incidents and assisted 16,414 on some of the UK and Ireland’s busiest beaches.

The RNLI’s new Beach Finder app enables users to search the UK for lifeguarded beaches and read up on local hazards. With real-time weather updates from the Met Office it also removes any doubt over whether to pack the umbrella or the sun cream! The app is available to download for Apple or Android devices at


RNLI media contacts

For further information please contact Philly Byrde, RNLI Press Officer, on 07786 668825 or or

Tim Ash, RNLI Public Relations Manager, on 07785 296252 or

For urgent out of hours enquiries, please contact the RNLI Duty Press Officer on 01202 336789.

Notes to editors

The RNLI encourages anyone planning a trip to the beach to follow these top tips:

1. Wherever possible swim at a lifeguarded beach and always swim between the red and yellow flags.
2. Never use inflatables in strong winds or rough seas.
3. Check tide times before you go.
4. If you get into trouble, stick your hand in the air and shout for help.
5. If you see someone else in trouble, tell a lifeguard. If you can’t see a lifeguard, call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard.

For more information visit


Byline: On one of the first sunny days of the season Eastbourne RNLI were tasked in two separate incidents to recover yachts with engine failure
Page Content: In the first incident the all-weather lifeboat (ALB), whilst returning to station from a routine Sunday morning’s training exercise, was diverted to Pevensey Bay following a report that a yacht had lost engine power and required assistance to return to harbour. A lifeboat crewman was put aboard the casualty vessel to rig a towline; the 35ft yacht with 4 people on board was then towed to the safety of the marina locks at Sovereign Harbour

Later in the day the ALB was again tasked to a yacht with engine failure. A 32ft yacht on passage to Brighton with four people on board was unable to make way against wind and tide whilst attempting to round Beachy Head. Dover Coastguard was alerted to the situation and requested the assistance of the volunteer lifeboat crew. Quickly on scene the ALB took the yacht under tow back to Sovereign Harbour.

An RNLI spokesman later said it’s a timely reminder at the start of the season for all boaters to check their engines and safety equipment before putting to sea after the long winter layup.


Byline: Mini visit toTorbay to raise funds
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Stevie Mann has embarked on a tour of Lifeboat stations around the UK to raise money for a new Inshore Lifeboat.

About the trip The trip will commence at 11am on Tuesday the 1st September 2009 at Lands End. It will take 41 days to complete traveling some 4,279 miles and visiting 165 lifeboat stations. I will be calling at the lifeboat stations between approximately 10am and 4.30pm Monday to Saturday. This will leave time to catch up in the event of any hold up and allow some time to meet up with other minis. *The last day visiting lifeboat stations is on Sunday 11th of October 2009. Please note: This trip is not about myself, it is about minis and the R.N.L.I. and it requires the help of mini clubs, mini enthusiasts and supporters of the R.N.L.I. I would like for other minis to come and join in parts of the run if they can. It would be helpful to be informed in advance of any clubs that would like to come and join in, that way I can put it on the web site who, when and where etc.

Stevie visited the Torbay station onSaturday 10th October & was met by the station president, ex Coxwain Arthur Curnow, who thanked him  for his efforts .

Contact:   to donate


Byline: RNLI Flood Rescue Team return from major European training exercise
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Twelve members of the RNLI Flood Rescue Team, supported by Goodyear, have now returned home after taking part in the European Union’s biggest ever emergency exercise.

The exercise, which cost more than £1.5 million and was funded by the EU, involved teams from the UK, Poland, Germany, Sweden, Estonia and The Netherlands.

Its aim was to simulate the effects of a tidal surge that devastated the UK and Holland in 1953 resulting in over 2,000 fatalities.

The UK came close to a repeat of that disaster in November 2007, when sea defences on parts of the East Coast came within centimetres of being overtopped.

The exercise, called FloodEx, was launched on Monday 21 September 2009 at the Fire Service College in Gloucestershire.

Attendees included the Rt. Hon Jacqui Smith MP, emergency planners and members of Parliament, alongside national government officers from a range of departments.

The exercise began at 4:30 on Tuesday morning (22 September) with four convoys departing from the Fire Service College, travelling through the Channel Tunnel, into France, Belgium and then onto the Netherlands with a Dutch police escort. The first convoy arrived at the FloodEx base camp around 6:30pm and the last later that evening.

Every morning, crews were briefed about that day’s rescue scenario, which included tasks like moving heavy pumping equipment into remote locations and setting up pumping stations; rescues from contaminated water; mass decontamination of flood victims, and communications with EU colleagues. Much of the action was captured by international film crews and reporters including the BBC.

RNLI team member Jason Webber, from the charity’s Bridlington Lifeboat Station, said: ‘It was an excellent exercise. Working with other agencies is very useful. It’s also very close to how we had to operate during the floods in Gloucester in 2007, when we had to work alongside the Fire Service.’

The RNLI Flood Rescue Team, which is supported by Goodyear, were the only team of volunteers from a charity invited to attend the event. The RNLI supplied two of the seven swift-water rescue trained crews and boats taking part in the exercise.

Hereford and Worcester Chief Fire Officer Paul Hayden, who led the UK’s response to the exercise, said: ‘I have received a number of very positive comments about the professionalism of the UK contingent throughout this exercise, which gave UK teams a chance to practice their skills under realistic and challenging conditions, working alongside colleagues from a range of fire and rescue services and voluntary organisations.’

CFO Paul Hayden continued: ‘This has been a fantastic opportunity to test the improved flood response training and coordination arrangements we have developed in the fire and rescue service since 2007. The EU spent in excess of £1.5m on this exercise to make it both realistic and challenging for all concerned. Not only would this scale of exercise been difficult to organise at a local level, but our success in attracting EU funding has enabled us to do so without cost to local council tax payers. Overall our involvement working alongside our EU colleagues was a major success.’

Notes to editors:

Footage (broadcast quality) has been filed with PA. Direct link:

Official FloodEx website:

About the RNLI Flood Rescue Team:

  • Formed in 2000, the RNLI charity’s Flood Rescue Team (FRT) is available at 24 hours notice to deploy anywhere in the world where waterborne search and rescue is needed due to natural disaster. 
  • The RNLI FRT is also a declared facility to the UK Government via the Department for International Development (DfID). RNLI FRT members are all either serving volunteer lifeboat crew members or operational RNLI staff who volunteer to be a part of the team.
  • The RNLI FRT depends on donations from the public and from organisations such as Goodyear to fund specialist training and equipment.
  • The RNLI also has representation on the Flood Response National Enhancement Programme (FRNEP), which is being lead by Defra in England and is responsible for delivering a new flood rescue capability. Floodex provides an opportunity to test the new arrangements being put in place for major flood responses across the UK.

About Goodyear:

  • Goodyear is helping to fund specialist training and equipment for the RNLI Flood Rescue Team.
  • Goodyear is one of the world’s largest tyre companies. Goodyear employs about 70,000 people and manufactures its products in more than 60 facilities in 26 countries around the world. 
  • Goodyear’s innovations have set automotive standards for more than 100 years. Goodyear has been the pioneer of the innovative safety technology known as RunOnFlat, which allows a driver to continue on a journey with a punctured tyre. Goodyear is the world’ s leading manufacturer of RunOnFlat tyres, with applications on various BMWs, the award winning Mini, Mercedes-Benz high performance cars, Opel and other brands. Additional Goodyear RunOnFlat fitments are on the horizon, as the company’s designers are working with multiple automobile manufacturers on more than 150 RunOnFlat projects.
  • For more information on Goodyear and its products, visit


Byline: Seatown RNLI lifeguards and volunteer lifeboat crew rescue grounded yachtsman
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RNLI lifeguards and the volunteer lifeboat crew from Seatown responded to a 34-foot yacht that ran aground off Seatown South beach yesterday afternoon (Monday 10 May).

The single-handed yachtsman was planning to anchor off the beach for some lunch when a line became caught round the propeller. Unable to restart the engine, the boat drifted onto a sandbar and ran aground.

The RNLI lifeguards patrolling Seatown South beach had seen the situation unfold and after radio communication from Portland Coastguard were tasked to attend the scene.

RNLI lifeguard Kevin Stewart responded on the team’s Rescue Water Craft (RWC). When Kevin reached the casualty, he initially declined any help as he was confident that, with the tide rising, the boat would soon be lifted clear of the sandbar.

The RNLI lifeguards continued to keep watch and 40 minutes later, the strong southwesterly wind had pushed the yacht closer to the shore so Kevin responded on the RWC again. As he approached, a big wave pushed the yacht even closer into the beach and the skipper accepted that he required help.

At this point, Seatown’s volunteer RNLI lifeboat crew were tasked. Tom Jones, RNLI volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager at Seatown, explained how the volunteer crew helped the stranded yachtsman.

He said: ‘The crew were paged at around 4.30pm and responded immediately in the inshore lifeboat. The helmsman was able to get in close enough for one of the crew to get onboard the yacht and secure a towrope. With Kevin standing by on the RWC, the crew gently pulled the yacht clear of the beach until he was in enough water to put his sails up and get away under his own steam.’

Notes to editors

  • Footage of the incident can be viewed at and is available from the RNLI PR office on the number below.
  • Photo shows Seatown RNLI inshore lifeboat pulling the yacht clear of the shore. Credit RNLI.

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact Ann Baxter, RNLI Lifeguard Press Officer on 07888 818 671 or or Paul Smith,


Byline: Charity auction to help Rowland RNLI save lives at sea
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An auction of promises at Rowland’s Grand Hotel next Wednesday (27 May) could raise more than £5,000 for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

The lifeboat charity’s Rowland branch has been planning the event for more than six months. Among the 50 promises and items up for auction are a trip in a hot air balloon, four tickets to a Rowland United match, a personalised birthday cake and six hours of ironing.

Rowland RNLI Branch Chairman David Stewart said more than 100 tickets for the auction have already been sold, but a few are still available.

He added: ‘The auction should be a great night out as well as a big fundraiser for the RNLI. Even though our town is more than 50 miles from the coast, the people of Rowland are great RNLI supporters and I’m hoping as many as possible will come along and support the charity’s volunteer lifeboat crews.

‘Local businesses and individuals have been generous, donating both their time and some fantastic lots for our auction. People can bid for the chance to get their ironing or cleaning done by some of the RNLI’s Rowland fundraising volunteers, or for some of the wonderful lots listed for auction.’

The auction starts at 7pm and is being held in the main function room of the Grand Hotel, High Street, Rowland. Tickets cost £5 and are available from the hotel or by calling Mr Stewart on 01234 245111.

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact Rowland RNLI Branch Press Officer, Joan Williams on 01234 239876 or on 07777 618922.