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RNLI lifeguard season in the south west draws to a close

Lifeguards News Release

With the RNLI lifeguard season drawing to a close this Sunday (30 September), the charity is urging those still using the water to head to one of the 20 beaches across Devon and Cornwall with extended patrols into October.

Rescue board on the beach at Porthcurno


RNLI lifeguards on patrol at Porthcurno

For the first time this year those living and visiting south east Cornwall will not need to travel far to visit a lifeguarded beach, with the charity extending safety patrols on Seaton beach.

RNLI lifeguards will provide safety cover on Seaton, Praa Sands, Sennen, Gwithian, Porthtowan, Perranporth, Towan, Watergate, Mawgan Porth, Harlyn, Constantine, Polzeath, Widemouth and Summerleaze in Cornwall, plus Woolacombe, and Bantham in Devon on weekends and during the school half term (Saturday 20 October until Sunday 28 October).

Fistral Beach in Newquay, Porthmeor beach in St Ives, Sennen Cove and Croyde in North Devon will have full time lifeguard cover throughout the whole month, until 28 October.

Charlie Gillett, RNLI lifeguard supervisor for South East Cornwall says;

‘October typically sees bigger surf conditions and although the air temperature has dropped, the water temperature is still very warm as it’s been heated throughout the summer. As a result we see more and more people wanting to spend their time at the beach and in the water before the short winter days approach.

‘So we’re really pleased to be able to offer extended lifeguard patrols on Seaton beach for the first time this year. This gives those living or visiting south east Cornwall an accessible beach on which to enjoy their activity safely. We’d really encourage anyone planning on going in the water to head to Seaton or one of the other lifeguarded beaches around the region where lifeguards will be on hand to offer advice and keep people safe.

‘Where there are no flags, there is no lifeguard service. Those who can’t make it to a lifeguarded beach can help keep themselves safe by taking note of the safety signage at the entrance to the beach, going with a friend or telling someone on the shore where they are going, at the same time always being aware of the conditions and their own capabilities in the water. Those who enjoy walking and exploring the coastline should also check the local tide times.’

The lifeguards will be on duty on the selected beaches between 10am and 6pm until the clocks go back on Sunday 28 October when the operational hours will be reduced to 10am-5pm for the last day of patrols.

Note to editors

  • Attached is a photo of the lifeguards on duty at Porthcurno during September. Credit RNLI

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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.

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