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Diplomatic cycling mission raises more than £1,000 for RNLI Wells-next-the-Sea

Lifeboats News Release

Cycling couple Jon and Claire Davies have completed their marathon 250 mile cycle ride from the Foreign Office in London to Wells-next-the-Sea in Norfolk to help raise money towards buying a new lifeboat for the RNLI.

Jon and Claire Davies arrive in Wells after their ride

RNLI/John Mitchell

Jon and Claire Davies arrive in Wells after their ride

Jon Davies, Director of the Diplomatic Academy and his wife Claire, a ministerial Speechwriter at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office left Tower lifeboat station in the capital on Friday 19 May and cycled via RNLI lifeboat stations at Southwold and Lowestoft on the Suffolk coast before reaching their destination in north Norfolk.

The couple arrived at the boathouse in Wells just twenty minutes after their scheduled time of 1:00pm today (Tuesday 23 May) and were greeted by members of Wells lifeboat volunteer crew.

On the last leg of their trip from Southwold in Suffolk, they were joined by Claire’s brother, Mark Dixon who cycled with them from Norwich. So far they have raised £910.80 but after Gift Aid that figure should swell to over £1000.

The RNLI is a cause close to the couple’s hearts. Jon is a trustee of The Lifeboat Fund, the Civil Service charity that supports the RNLI. The Fund is marking its 150th anniversary with an appeal to raise over a million pounds towards a new state of the art lifeboat Shannon class lifeboat for the Norfolk station.

The Lifeboat Fund - a charity of the Civil Service, BT and Royal Mail - has raised money for 52 lifeboats over its 150 years. Five boats and a hovercraft bearing a Civil Service number remain in service with the RNLI. The new Shannon lifeboat at Wells will be Civil Service number 53.

The Fund has pledged to raise £1.1 million towards the cost of the lifeboat for RNLI Wells-next-the-Sea. It will replace the 25 year old Mersey class lifeboat Doris M Mann of Ampthill which is nearing the end of her RNLI life. The new Shannon uses water jet engines instead of propellers making her more manoeuvrable and agile in difficult seas. She can be launched and recovered from the beach using specially designed equipment.

Jon and Claire said they were pleased to have completed their trip and will now return to London by train to join the Foreign Office Welly Walk tomorrow (Wednesday 24 May) – part of the RNLI’s Mayday campaign - which aims to raise £750,000 to help fund vital kit needed for our lifeboat crews.

Jon and Claire can still be sponsored at:

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/JON-DAVIES17

Note to Editors:

Jon and Claire are happy to be contacted on (07501) 084697 or (07768) 514525.

RNLI media contacts

For more information, contact Paul Dunt, RNLI Press Officer, on 0207 6207416 or 07786 668825 or paul_dunt@rnli.org.uk. Alternatively, contact the RNLI Press Office on 01202 336789.

John Mitchell, Wells-next-the-Sea Lifeboat Press Officer Wells-next-the-Sea Mob: 07831 103 166 Tel: 01328 710882 jmitchell@hotmail.co.uk

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 237 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 180 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.

Jon and Claire celebrate with the crew of the Wells-next-the-Sea lifeboat

RNLI/John Mitchell

Jon and Claire celebrate with the crew of the Wells-next-the-Sea 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 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.

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