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Kinsale RNLI Raft Race Bank Holiday Saturday

Lifeboats News Release

Volunteer crew from Kinsale RNLI will race against an estimated 15 other teams on Bank Holiday Saturday (30 July) in the annual Kinsale RNLI Raft Race.

The race starts at the Bulman Bar in Summercove at 1pm and finishes at the main slip by Kinsale pier.  Reigning champions 'The Dock' will not compete this year, leaving the way clear for a new team to claim the Kinsale RNLI Raft Race trophy made by Dominic Dolan of Kinsale Silver.

RNLI supporter and celebrity chef Martin Shanahan is master of ceremonies at the prize giving and Party on the Pier following the race.  Kinsale fishermen including Eamon O’Neill, Finbarr Desmond, Gearoid Fitzgerald, Mark Hurley, John O’Mahony and Johnny Walsh will supply ‘A Taste of the Sea’ to help raise funds for the RNLI. 

Martin says:  ‘Why not come to Kinsale this Bank Holiday Saturday for the best fun on the water as up to 20 teams compete in fancy dress in the Kinsale RNLI raft race followed by the famous Party on the Pier.  Our hardworking fishermen will be doing fish and chips on the pier and all they ask is that you donate generously to the RNLI. The pier is the best place to view the race, with live commentary from DJ Mark.  I will be on the water broadcasting live on Facebook so even if you are not in Kinsale, you can still join in the fun.  It’s a great day out for all the family so join us on the pier from noon on Bank Holiday Saturday.’

Local businesses have generously sponsored prizes for fastest raft, best fancy dress and the team raising the greatest amount of sponsorship for the RNLI.  Last year the Aquaholics team raised over €1,200 so the bar is set high for 2016.  Race sponsors include Canvas Works, CH Marine, Eli Lilly, Graepel Kinsale, Granny’s Bottom Drawer, Herbalife, ITW Sports Branding, Kinsale Boat Hire, Kinsale Good Food Circle, Mamukko, Musgraves, 1601 Off Licence, Victoria’s Antiques Cork and Vista Wine Bar.

Register in The Dock pub – on Friday (29 August) between 6 and 8pm with a free pint of Guinness for all rafters who lodge their sponsorship money.  This can also be done on Saturday outside the Bulman Bar from 10.30am.

The Kinsale RNLI lifeboat station will hold an Open Day on Sunday 31st July from 1.30pm.  Visitors are invited to meet the crew, see the lifeboat and learn more about the work of the RNLI. All welcome. 

For rules & regulations and sponsorship forms for the raft race email or call Tricia 083 1529282


Notes for Editor:
Fishermen pix - Kinsale fishermen preparing for the party on the pier in aid of Kinsale RNLI.
Finbarr Desmond, Gearoid Fitzgerald and John O'Mahony with Kinsale RNLI volunteer helm Nick Searls
Last year's winner - The Dock bar team are the reigning champions of Kinsale RNLI Raft Race
Fancy dress - Vista Bistro and Bar won Best Fancy Dress last year

RNLI media contacts
For more information please contact Tricia Tyson Kinsale RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer email: Tel: 083 1529282 or Niamh Stephenson RNLI Public Relations Manager Tel: 087 1254 124 / 01 8900 460 email or Nuala McAloon RNLI Press Officer Tel: 087 6483547 email:

Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen, Carrybridge and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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 or by email.


The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland