Sail day raises £24,000 for RNLI

Lifeboats News Release

The annual RNLI sail day smashed its previous total, raising over £24,000 for the charity.


RNLI/Andy Berry

Penarth Atlantic Class and flotilla

Friday (16 June) saw 25 yachts lined up just off Penarth Pier for the annual Bill Davies Memorial Cup race, organised by the Cardiff branch of the RNLI and drawing on the support of local yacht clubs.

With near perfect sailing conditions the yachts, all given freely for the day by their skippers and provided by Penarth and Cardiff Marinas, Cardiff Bay Yacht Club and Cardiff Yacht Club, raced around various way points in the Bristol Channel. Generous sponsors paid to place crew members on each boat, with many of the boats having 8-10 people on board.

Marshalling the start was Penarth RNLI's Atlantic class lifeboat. The lifeboat escorted many of the yachts around the course, providing additional excitement and great photo opportunities. The lifeboat was soon joined by our colleagues on Barry Dock RNLI lifeboat, and the two lifeboats made for an impressive sight when they joined the flotilla of boats, all carrying the RNLI flag.

The sailors were all welcomed to Cardiff Bay Yacht Club for an after race buffet reception, raffle and charity auction, with generous prizes donated by many local organisations.

Jason Dunlop, Lifeboat Operations Manager for Penarth RNLI, thanked everyone for making the event such a huge success.

He said: 'Our volunteer crew members race into action when lives are at risk at sea. The generosity of the sponsors and supporters today will help the RNLI ensure our crews have access to the best training, equipment and support to ensure they are fully equipped for rescue. I should like to pay tribute to the work of the organisers, led by Mr Colin Lyons of Cardiff Bay Yacht Club, for making the event run so efficiently and providing us all with such memories.'

The Bill Davies Memorial Cup was presented to Joyride owned by Chris Watler of Cardiff Bay Yacht Club where the event was hosted. The sponsors of that boat were Berry Smith LLP whose guests were invited by Sian Reynolds. She said: 'We all thoroughly enjoyed the event, of course we were blessed with super weather and had a grand time.'

Notes to editors:

For more information please contact Andy Berry, Penarth RNLI Lifeboat Press Officer, on 07951 051128 or Chris Cousens, RNLI Press Officer, Wales and West, on 07748 265496 or 01745 585162 or by email on

RNLI/Andy Berry

Perfect conditions for sail day

RNLI/Andy Berry

Barry Dock Lifeboat escorting flotilla

RNLI/Andy Berry

Atlantic Class lifeboat

RNLI/Andy Berry

Yachts and Atlantic lifeboat

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, in a normal year, 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.

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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

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