Dreich weather fails to dampen spirits at Tobermory Lifeboat Day
The dreich weather failed to dampen spirits at Tobermory RNLI’s annual Lifeboat Day with locals and visitors raising £5,000 to help save lives at sea on Sunday 12 August 2018.
Lifeboat Day kicked off at the slightly earlier time of 1100 and Tobermory RNLI’s Severn class lifeboat, Elizabeth Fairlie Ramsey, arrived at the pontoons in style with volunteer crew member, Alexander ‘Wee Jock’ Anderson piping on the bow accompanied by Tobermory Womble. The lifeboat was then opened for visitors to explore and to meet the crew. Ashore, there was a free RNLI lifejacket clinic and sea safety stand and an array of stalls and games. Tobermory Coastguard Rescue Team and the Scottish Fire and Rescue were also on hand with equipment displays. Music was provided by Who Shrunk The Pianist and the Tobermory High School Pipe Band. Alasdair MacCrone acted as Master of Ceremonies for the whole afternoon.
With everyone getting up an appetite, the BBQ was extremely busy and this year visitors had the opportunity to ‘surf and turf’ as there were prawn cocktails available in ‘Respect The Water’ reusable plastic pint glasses. Organised by Lindsay Macdonald at the Pier Café, more than 800 prawns were very generously donated by local fishermen and shelled by some of the crew. Unsurprisingly they sold out within an hour.
During the day, Alasdair MacCrone led a tribute to the late Ronnie Campbell MBE, former Chairman of the Ross of Mull and Iona RNLI Fundraising Branch, with a minute’s enthusiastic applause from the crowd in recognition of his contribution not only to the RNLI but to the island community.
Later in the afternoon, there was a series of rescue displays. The lifeboat’s daughter craft, the Y Boat recovered casualties from the water and the crew also ‘rescued’ experienced kayaker and Deputy Launching Authority Nick Ray from his kayak. Volunteer Crew Rose Skelton demonstrated how to ‘Float To Live’ part of the RNLI’s ‘Respect The Water’ campaign which urges people to fight their instinct to swim if they fall into water and try to float until the cold water shock passes. The day closed with the infamous raft race and the raffle.
Tobermory RNLI Fundraising Group Chair Nettie Wood said: ‘We’d like to thank everyone who supported us whether by donating raffle prizes or helping out, as well as those who donated so generously on the day. We have raised a fantastic £5,005.33 which will help save lives at sea.’
Notes to editors
For further information, please contact Dr Sam Jones, Tobermory RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager on 07747601900 or Gemma Macdonald, Regional Media Officer for Scotland on 07826 900639.
Video of the Elizabeth Fairlie Ramsey being piped to the pontoons will be available shortly.
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.