RNLI to share lifesaving tips and raise vital funds throughout Tour de Yorkshire

Lifeboats News Release

Lifeboats, lifeguards and yellow welly land art will help the RNLI showcase its vital lifesaving work during the Tour de Yorkshire this week.

The RNLI is the official charity partner of the Tour de Yorkshire, which coincides with the RNLI’s national fundraising campaign, Mayday.

Highlights of the RNLI activity during the three-day race include:

o In the start and finish areas of each stage (Beverley; Settle; Otley; Doncaster; Middlesbrough; Scarborough), members of the RNLI Community Safety Team will be providing vital safety advice from their Respect The Water vehicle to help people stay safe on or near the water.

o In the Fanzone at the end of each stage (Settle; Doncaster; Scarborough), the charity will be setting a challenge for spectators - people can have a go at cycling half a mile on a static bike and then get into RNLI crew kit as quickly as possible, just like RNLI volunteers may need to do if they cycle to the lifeboat station when they are called out for a rescue. A Proform Fitness Tour de France bike used for the challenge has been donated by Icon Health & Fitness

o RNLI volunteers will be out in force all along the race route to talk to the public about the work of the RNLI, collect donations and sell yellow welly Mayday pin badges.

o An RNLI lifeguard vehicle will take pride of place in the Tour de Yorkshire publicity caravan each day, which sets off two hours before the race starts. Lifeguards will be giving away RNLI flags and stickers to spectators.

o In Whitby, the RNLI all-weather lifeboat George and Mary Webb will be positioned close to the swing bridge to greet the cyclists as they ride through the town. RNLI mascot Stormy Stan will also be at large.

o In Scarborough, the RNLI all-weather lifeboat Fanny Victoria Wilkinson and Frank Stubbs will launch to welcome cyclists at the end of the race.

o RNLI Lifeguards will be on beaches at Scarborough and Whitby, keeping visitors safe between 10am and 6pm during the event.

o At Thorp Arch, a giant RNLI Mayday yellow welly will appear in a field along the route on Friday, as part of the Tour de Yorkshire’s Lining the Route land art competition.

o In Helmsley, there’ll be a knitted RNLI ‘yellow welly trail’ around local businesses, with a prize for the person who finds the most wellies.

Amy Casbolt, RNLI Community Fundraising Manager, said: ‘Being the Tour de Yorkshire’s charity partner is a huge opportunity for the RNLI and we can’t wait to see the cyclists line up at the start. Throughout the Tour, our volunteers will be helping turn Yorkshire yellow with Mayday wellies and land art, while some of our lifeboat crews will be getting in on the action, on the water at Whitby and Scarborough.

‘We’d like as many people as possible will pop by to say hello, perhaps talk to us about water safety and have a go at our cycling challenge. And as it’s RNLI Mayday, we hope visitors will be generous when they see one of our collectors and will wear their yellow welly pin badges with pride as they watch the riders race by.’

The RNLI has nine lifeboat stations in Yorkshire and provides a lifeguard service on 14 beaches. All funds raised for Mayday through the Tour de Yorkshire partnership will be used to support the RNLI’s lifesaving service in Yorkshire.

For more information about volunteering for the RNLI during the Tour de Yorkshire, email fundraising@rnli.org.uk or call 0300 300 9908.

1. Sir Gary Verity, Welcome to Yorkshire Chairman, with RNLI crew members on board Whitby all-weather lifeboat. Credit SWPix
2. An RNLI yellow welly. Credit Nigel Millard.

Media contacts
For more information please contact Alison Levett, RNLI Public Relations Manager, North, on 07786 668912 or at alison_levett@rnli.org.uk. Or Clare Hopps, RNLI Public Relations Officer, North, on 07824 518641 or at clare_hopps@rnli.org.uk 

Notes to editors:
Tour de Yorkshire is a Welcome to Yorkshire (WTY) / Amaury Sport Organisation (A.S.O.) race in association with British Cycling which holds a 2.1 European Tour UCI Classification.

The Tour de Yorkshire is an annual international race with a new route through Yorkshire each year. It forms part of the legacy of the historic Yorkshire Grand Départ of the Tour de France 2014, along with the Yorkshire Bank Bike Libraries which aim to offer every child in Yorkshire access to a bike.

Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or or by email.