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Lifeboats prove to be a shining light for fundraising at Ramsgate RNLI

Lifeboats News Release

This Christmas will see not just one, but three RNLI lifeboats lit up in Ramsgate Royal Harbour as part of the town's festive illuminations, which last year raised £400 for the charity.

The Ramsgate Royal Harbour lit up last Christmas.

RNLI/Steve Burton

The Ramsgate Royal Harbour lit up last Christmas.

This will be the fifth year boat owners in Ramsgate Royal Harbour have lit up their boats in December to raise money for Ramsgate RNLI. This event has attracted television coverage worldwide and people travel from Europe and all over England to witness it.

As well as being home to Ramsgate's Trent class life boat Esme Anderson, additional lifeboats are also occasionally seen in the harbour. These boats are part of the RNLI's relief fleet, inshore and all-weather lifeboats sited around the UK and the Republic of Ireland ready to go into action when station boats need to be taken off service for repairs, updates or maintenance.

The relief Mersey class lifeboat Lady of Hilbre is currently stored out of the water and ready to support Margate lifeboat station, which also has a Mersey. While on standby it has been decorated with lights.

This year a relief Trent class lifeboat, the Dora Foster McDougall is also being based in Ramsgate to provide cover not only for the town's lifeboat, but also for Sheerness and Gorleston-on-Sea lifeboat at Great Yarmouth.

On hearing that the lifeboat was due to arrive the Ramsgate Illuminations Committee asked if it was possible to moor the Dora Foster McDougall in a previously dark area of the harbour to provide a wider coverage of illuminations.

Jon Rudd, Divisional Maintenance Manager for RNLI, was at the station at the time and was happy to oblige, happy knowing that the lifeboat would not only provide a beacon of light during the illuminations, but would also be a beacon of hope to all mariners if its services are required at sea.

'If you are free over December we can recommend a trip down to Ramsgate to see the lights and the lifeboats!' said Ramsgate volunteer Press Officer Karen Cox. 'Without the support from all of our volunteers and the public we cannot do our job of saving lives at sea as we are entirely funded by public donations. This is a great chance to see the Christmas lights - and raise money for the RNLI at the same time!'


Media Contacts:

Karen Cox Volunteer Press Officer email (07779) 848431.

Paul Dunt RNLI Regional Media Officer London and South East. Email (07785) 296252

The relief fleet Mersey class lifeboat 'Lady of Hilbre' lit up last year.

RNLI/Sarah Hewes

The relief fleet Mersey class lifeboat 'Lady of Hilbre' lit up last year.
Ramsgate's all-weather lifeboat 'Esme Anderson'.

RNLI/Nigel Hefford

Ramsgate's all-weather lifeboat 'Esme Anderson'.

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 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.

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.


The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland