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Duke of Cambridge visits Tower RNLI to discuss male suicide issue

Lifeboats News Release

The RNLI today welcomed the Duke of Cambridge to London’s Tower lifeboat station for the launch of a multi-agency taskforce aiming to help tackle the issue of male suicide, the single biggest killer of men under the age of 45 in the UK.

The Duke was met at the charity’s floating lifeboat station, nestled next to Waterloo Bridge in central London, by volunteer and full-time members of the Tower RNLI lifeboat crew, along with representative from other frontline organisations who are often the first on scene in dealing with self-harm related incidents.

Earlier in the day the Duke of Cambridge led the inaugural roundtable discussion of the male suicide prevention coalition, convened by the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) and made up of representatives from National Rail, RNLI, Highways England, British Transport Police, the National Police Chiefs’ Council, Chief Fire Officers Association, Association of Ambulance Chief Executives, Samaritans and Lynx.

You can find out more about the taskforce here

Following the visit, Brian Robson, RNLI Community Safety Manager, said: ‘The impact of suicide on society, communities, families and individuals cannot be underestimated. The RNLI is pleased to be a part of this hugely positive partnership focussing on preventing male suicide in particular.

‘Our charity is committed, through collaboration and partnership working, to help raise the profile of this issue, reduce suicide in, on and around the water and by doing so contribute to preventing suicide in the UK as a whole. We are looking forward to the work ahead.’

David Norman, Tower RNLI lifeboat station helmsman in London, said: ‘Suicide attempts and self- harm are a big part of what we deal with on the River Thames in London. It’s something our full-time and volunteer crews have to come to terms with dealing with.’

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.

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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