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Swim Safe launches in Tyne and Wear this summer

Lifeguards News Release

Swim Safe, the free national outdoor swimming and water safety programme for children, returns to Longsands and Sandhaven beaches this summer.

Children taking part in free Swim Safe sessions

RNLI

Children taking part in free Swim Safe sessions

The Swim England and RNLI partnership offers free sessions to 7 – 14-year-olds teaching children how to swim outdoors and what do if they get into trouble in the water. The sessions are being held at Longsands Beach, Tynemouth, running from 6 to 18 August, and North Bay in Sandhaven, South Shields from 25 July to 4 August.

Matt Thompson, Swim Safe coordinator for Longsands and Sandhaven, says: ‘Children love swimming outdoors, but swimming in the sea, rivers or lakes is very different to swimming in a pool, where most children learn. Swim Safe is a free, fun activity that teaches kids lifelong skills that will help them enjoy open water safely.

‘Parents and carers are also encouraged to get involved and find out more about how their children can stay safe at the beach and by the open water. Places are free to book at swimsafe.org.uk and children only need to bring their swim suit and a towel.’

Children aged 7­–­­­14 who can swim at least 25 metres can take part. Wetsuits and swim hats will be provided for the session and all young people will get a free goody bag and T-shirt.

Swim England and the RNLI launched Swim Safe in 2013 at a single venue in Cornwall. Now in its sixth year, Swim Safe has grown to include 29 locations across the UK hosting sessions for the public and local schools.

The sessions are delivered by local partners, including community groups, leisure providers and local councils.

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.

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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.