RNLI launches Christmas fundraising appeal as service is busier than ever over festive period

The RNLI is launching a major fundraising appeal this Christmas as demand on the service over the period continues to grow.

Friday, 13th December 2019, 3:00 pm

Last year, RNLI volunteers along the east coast of England experienced their joint busiest festive period (December 24 - January 1) since records began.

There were 19 lifeboat launches along the east coast from Christmas Eve to New Year’s Day, compared with just two launches 40 years ago.

In 2018 there were instances of the RNLI helping the public in Scarborough and Filey over Christmas.

Scarborough RNLI lifeboat house.

On Christmas Day last year, a man was helped to safety by lifeboat crew in Scarborough.

The inshore lifeboat was dispatched on the rescue operation at 3.15pm after a man was cut off by incoming tide.

He was found on rocks at Scalby Ness and was dropped at the Sands slipway where the Coastguard were waiting.

Last Boxing Day, the Filey inshore lifeboat was launched to assist the Coastguard and Yorkshire Ambulance Service in rescuing a 65-year-old woman who had fallen on Filey Brigg and suffered serious shoulder injuries.

The RNLI lifeboat crew were able to transfer the woman back to Coble Landing to be cared for by paramedics.

The charity is now issuing a call for help as it faces a ‘Perfect Storm’ with more people than ever needing its help, meaning public support is crucial.

Nationally, RNLI volunteers launched to the rescue 155 times during the festive period last year compared with just 21 callouts in 1979.

Since 1979, RNLI volunteers have rescued 1,453 people and saved 299 lives.

To ensure the RNLI can continue this lifesaving work this Christmas and into the future, the charity is running a major fundraising appeal, The Perfect Storm.

The aim is to raise £1.8 and recruit 12,000 new supporters across the country.

While many people will be thinking about presents, turkey and time with the family, the dedicated RNLI volunteers from 238 lifeboat stations across the UK and Ireland will be ensuring their yellow wellies and lifejackets are ready for when the call comes and will be ready to drop everything at a moment’s notice to save lives at sea.

Since 2000, many of those needing help are often just visiting the coast rather than those out on vessels or watercraft.

The RNLI’s Perfect Storm appeal has been launched in response to major challenges the charity is facing.

In 2018, the RNLI’s financial resources dropped by £28.6m, while its crews are busier than ever.

To support the RNLI’s Perfect Storm appeal this Christmas, helping to ensure the charity’s brave volunteers can continue saving lives at sea, visit www.rnli.org/ThePerfectStorm