Lyme Regis RNLI lifeboat week 'a resounding success'
A soggy start with rain and high winds turned into a sunny finale and a huge success for lifeboat week in Lyme Regis.
And as the week came to an end last night the organisers - the Lyme Regis and Charmouth RNLI Guild - reported an early estimated total for donations in the region of £26,000.
The weather caused the postponement of the bathtub race and the swimming challenge, but both were held later and cancellations were few.
Chairman of the Guild Ken Lavery said:'The week was a resounding success and a tribute to all the volunteers who gave up their time in the planning process and during the week itself. Once again we have had tremendous support from the public and we have received many positive comments.'
Among the many successes, drawing huge support,, were the Army's Red Devils parachute display team, the popular wine or water raffle,the 'name the welly dog' competition and the tug 'o war across the harbourmouth which was started by Lord Julian Fellowes, creator of Downton Abbey who was aboard the harbourmaster's launch with his wife, Lady Emma.
A Madagascan tortoise stole the show at a packed Uplyme village hall presentation of snakes and exotic reptiles.
Six hundred hot dogs were sold by the lifeboat crew at their barbecue on the harbour slipway. And a local firefighter scored the first ever hole in one at the golf challenge on the harbour North Wall.
As the week came to a close last night with a spectacular fireworks display, one of the last events - the swimming challenge from Cobb Gate to the harbour- attracted a record entry of 100.....65 adults and 35 juniors.
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.