Mersea Island Boxing Day Dip 2017 raises vital funds for RNLI
Crowds flocked to the Monkey Beach on Mersea Island in the biting cold wind of Boxing Day morning to cheer on 138 hardy souls gathered in swimming attire and fancy dress and braced for a chilly dip in the cold North Sea.
The Mersea Island Boxing Day Dip is celebrating its twelfth year, and has so far raised in excess of £33,000 for the RNLI.
Fancy dress was judged by the RNLI mascot Stormy Stan who arrived in the West Mersea lifeboat, Just George. Three winners were chosen from a medley of outrageous costumes (including a smattering of Santas, a bumblebee and Banana Man).
The prize for the best man went to Gary Petley for his cheerleader costume, the best lady was Ceri Daniels for her Sammy the Seal outfit and the best child was Jesse Elson for dressing up as Father Christmas.
The Victory kindly provided mulled wine and hot blackcurrant juice to fortify the dippers, Tesco donated mince pies, and Lynn and Heather from the Poop Deck sponsored the tea tent - providing hot refreshments to sustain everyone.
Two Atlantic 85 lifeboats were in attendance Just George from West Mersea and the flank station’s lifeboat, David Porter MPS, from Clacton RNLI.
Stormy Stan entertained the crowds, along with lifeboat helmsman Jason Dale with his 'cracking commentary'.
Monkey Beach on Boxing Day was a sight to behold. West Mersea Lifeboat station and the RNLI would like to thank everyone for joining them for a 'British dose of invigorating madness for a worthy cause.'
RNLI Media contacts
For more information please contact Leafy Dumas, RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on: 01206 386507 or 07761 303597. Or email: email@example.com
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.