Learn about RNLI's history at Chalke Valley History Festival

Lifeboats News Release

Visitors to Chalke Vallery History Festival will have the chance to learn more about the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

The festival, which runs from 27 June – 3 July, is a celebration of British history with talks, displays and re-enactments and will be held at Ebbesbourne Wake, between Salisbury and Shaftesbury.

The RNLI will be present during the week-long festival to give the public a flavour of the local lifeboat history. Visitors will be able to get up close to the static display of the historic RNLI lifeboat William Riley, and learn about the role it had in the local community.

There will be daily pop up talks next to the William Riley based on the history of the RNLI. These 30 minute talks will be delivered by a variety of people and take place from Tuesday 28 June to Saturday 2 July at 6pm and at 2.30pm on the last day of the festival, Sunday 3 July.

Along with this, the RNLI will have an interactive presence among other exhibitors in ‘museum row’ for the local branch of the charity, with representatives from the RNLI’s education and face-to-face fundraising teams. Activities will be aimed at engaging school children and the general public with the RNLI and how to stay safe at sea.

Community fundraisers from Wilton and Fordingbridge and Ringwood branches will be present, as well as members of the RNLI heritage and philanthropy teams.

David Welton, RNLI Heritage Manager, said: ‘We’re really excited about the festival and having the opportunity to engage people with the heritage of the RNLI. Founded in 1824, we’ve got a lot of history to talk about! The festival gives us the opportunity to show people the former Whitby lifeboat the William Riley, built in 1909. It’s not every day that you can see an historic lifeboat in the fields of Wiltshire.’

For more information on the RNLI’s involvement with the Chalke Valley History festival, visit the websites below.

RNLI media contacts
For more information please telephone Aysha Bryant, RNLI Communications Student Placement on 01752 854479 or email aysha_bryant@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.

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.