RNLI volunteers in Cornwall prepare for another Christmas on call

Lifeboats News Release

Volunteer RNLI lifeboat crews from Cornwall’s 14 lifeboat stations will be on duty this festive season, ready to launch and answer the call for help. As they call on the public to support the RNLI’s lifesaving work this Christmas, many are reflecting on previous Christmas events

RNLI/Austen Bannister

Fowey RNLI volunteer Amelia Luck with brother Oli Luck and Dad Adam Luck

that were interrupted by the sound of the pager.

 

One of these is 22 year old Amelia Luck, who last year became the first ever female helm at Fowey lifeboat station. One of her family’s festive traditions is a bracing sea dip on Christmas Day, but in 2020 this became an even more memorable occasion when the pagers sounded just as they were beginning their Christmas swim.

Amelia says: ‘My family and I go for a festive swim each Christmas Day so were down at Readymoney Cove in Fowey when the pagers went off. I got a lift with another crew member and arrived at the station dripping wet in a dryrobe with my swimsuit on underneath!’

On this occasion, Fowey’s volunteer crew were called to the aid of a yacht which had been drifting all night on passage from Falmouth to Fowey after suffering engine failure.

Amelia recalls: ‘The skipper was very reluctant to ask for help on Christmas Day and very apologetic when we arrived to help. But that’s what we’re trained to do - we’re always ready to respond, 24/7, whether that means leaving dinner on the table, or being called away from a family event. There’s really no feeling quite like bringing someone home safe to their families – especially at Christmas.’

Amelia’s brother Oli is also on the crew, and Dad Adam a volunteer Deputy Launching Authority (DLA) meaning all three could be called away from their festive family feast this year. This is a reality for thousands of volunteers around the UK and Ireland, with many leaving loved ones behind to answer the call. Over the past decade, RNLI lifeboats have launched over 1,200 times during the festive period.

Rescue at any time of year would not be possible without donations from the RNLI’s generous supporters, helping to fund the essential kit, training and equipment needed by lifeboat crews all year round.

Lucy Ashton, Regional Engagement Manager at the RNLI, said: ‘Even at Christmas, our lifesavers are ready to drop everything at a moment’s notice and rush to the aid of someone in trouble on the water.

‘But we couldn’t rescue people without kind donations from the public which fund the kit, training and equipment we need to save others and get home safely, at Christmas and all year round.’

To make a donation to the RNLI’s Christmas Appeal visit: RNLI.org/Xmas

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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.

 

RNLI/Austen Bannister

Fowey RNLI volunteer Amelia Luck

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 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.

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 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.

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