70-mile Anglesey swim set to boost funds for new north Wales lifeboat
An arduous swim around Anglesey’s coast is set to help raise funds for a new RNLI lifeboat in memory of a young crew member.
Liane Llewellyn-Hickling is due to swim 70 miles non-stop around the island next week, and is hoping to boost a fund for a new lifeboat in memory of Holyhead RNLI volunteer Craig Steadman, 28, who tragically died last year in a motorbike accident on the A55.
Experience endurance swimmer Liane, 34, an NHS physiotherapist who is originally from Bradford, has already swam the English Channel (there and back!) in 27 hours; around St Kilda in the Scottish Hebrides, Windermere and Coniston Water in Cumbria, Loch Ness, and around the Isle of Wight . She was also part of the celebrity swim across the Irish sea in 2011, which involved celebrities such as Ronan Keating and Pamela Stephenson.
But she is now set for her latest challenge as she prepares to swim around her ‘second home’. Tides and weather permitting, Liane is set to complete the challenge in around 24 hours between 18-21 August, aided by local adventure kayakers Nigel Dennis and his partner Eila Wilkinson, who will act as her guides. Nigel and Eila have been heavily involved in plotting the course and working out tides and timings for the swim, as well as aiding Liane with her training.
Liane will set off from Swint Beach, Moelfre, and swim clockwise around the island, encountering rocky headlands such as North and South Stack, Penmon Point and the difficult currents of the Menai Straits.
Speaking at a talk held at Holyhead Sailing Club on Friday evening, Liane said she wanted to give something back to the community which has been so welcoming to her and her husband Chris.
'I unfortunately never met Craig personally, but from what I hear he was an outgoing crew member who everyone locally knew. I’ve met a lot of the crew and know how much they give to the community, and wanted to use my swim to help the RNLI raise the money for a new boat.
Holyhead RNLI have been given the challenge to raise £24,000 towards the fund for the lifeboat, which will be based in Barmouth, where Craig often holidayed as a child.
The open waters around Anglesey will provide many challenges for Liane, but previous swims, in particular her English Channel two-way swim, have shown she has the endurance and ability to rise to the challenge.
A justgiving crowdfunding page has been set up where supporters can donate. People can also send donations directly to Holyhead Lifeboat Station, where they will be added to the fundraising appeal.
RNLI media contact
For more information Eleri Roberts, RNLI Public Relations Manager on 01745 585162 / 07771 941390 or email Eleri_Roberts@rnli.org.uk.
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.