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Chipping in to help save lives at sea

Lifeboats News Release

Margate RNLI’s first ever Christmas tree chipping fund-raiser has raised a welcome £409.27 for the cause of saving lives at sea, also providing the opportunity to show off the station’s lifeboats and facilities to the public.

Margate RNLI Christmas tree chipping 08.01.23 - 2 (RNLI Margate)

RNLI Margate

Margate RNLI Christmas tree chipping 08.01.23 - 2 (RNLI Margate)

Volunteers at the lifeboat station were fortunate to have an offer from Joe Weitzel of Top Branch Tree Services to provide a free Christmas tree chipping service for the charity and today (Sunday 8 January) the public were invited to bring their old Christmas trees along to the station where Joe put them through his giant shredder, reducing them to chips which will be used sustainably for pathways and allotments.

A steady stream of visitors turned up, many in family groups with their children who watched spell-bound as their last remnants of Christmas disappeared into the machine and were spat out at the other end as a mountain of woodchip. The crew soon lost count but its was estimated that around 70 trees were reduced to chips. The service was provided free of charge although people were invited to make a donation towards the RNLI’s funds.

Thanet RNLI Fundraising Group were on hand to collect donations and a total of £409.27 was raised with the souvenir shop also welcoming visitors. The crew like to consider the station is part of the local community and just as importantly visitors were able to see the lifeboats first hand and meet the team.

Derek Amas, Lifeboat Operations Manager, RNLI Margate said: “This was the first time we have tried this and it was a great success, both as a fundraiser and in allowing us to meet some of our supporters and let them see what we get up to. We are grateful to Joe for providing his expertise and machinery, hopefully this is something we can repeat next year.”

Notes to editors

· Margate lifeboat station has been operating since 1860. To learn more about the lifeboat station go to:

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact:

· Peter Barker, RNLI volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07974 064304 or [email protected]

· Paul Dunt, Regional Media Officer (South East) on 0207 6207416, 07786 668825 or [email protected]

· RNLI Press Office on 01202 336789.

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.

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