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Join the RNLI Christmas Reindeer Run in Portsmouth and help save lives at sea

Lifeboats News Release

There’s still time to grab your antlers and trainers for the RNLI’s annual Reindeer Run in Hampshire this Christmas and help save lives at sea throughout the year.

a man and woman dressed in RNLI lifeboat crew kit running and wearing reindeer antlers

RNLI/Harrison Bates

Library picture of a past Reindeer Run

On Sunday 3 December the charity will be holding the annual festive fundraiser at Southsea Common where it’s hoped hundreds of people will don a pair of antlers and join its mascots Rookie the Reindeer and Stormy Stan to raise money for the charity.

This Christmas, while many people will be enjoying time off with their families, RNLI volunteers at the charity’s 238 lifeboat stations will be on call, ready to leave their festive celebrations and launch at a moment’s notice if their pagers sound.

But the Reindeer Run is a way in which supporters can help the charity pay for vital equipment and training without missing their Christmas dinner. Plus the sight of hundreds of runners dressed as reindeers is likely to put a smile on everyone’s faces in the build up to the big day.

Registration starts at 8am and there is a choice of 10k or 5k fun runs and even a 1k Santa Saunter that’s perfect for the little ones to take part in. All those who complete the run will receive a free RNLI Reindeer Run medal. There will be prizes for the first woman and first man to cross the finish line in the 10k and 5k runs. Runners, who must register and buy tickets for the event in advance, are encouraged to raise sponsorship which will go directly to saving lives.

Charlie Rustem, RNLI Community Manager said

‘The Portsmouth Reindeer Run is a great opportunity for people of all ages to get in to the festive spirit, get active and be a lifesaver, as you’ll be helping raise vital funds to help us saves lives at sea.

The sea and dangers it can bring never takes a Christmas break, and fundraising events like this are our own call for help, as we rely on the generosity of participants and their family and friends, to help fund our lifesaving rescues, crew kit and resources.’

For more information or to sign up for the Portsmouth Reindeer Run click here:

For those unable to attend the event there is also the opportunity for anyone, anywhere, to take part by joining the RNLI’s virtual Reindeer Run. For the first time the RNLI is setting Reindeer Runners the challenge of running 24 miles throughout December – that’s one mile for every hour RNLI lifesavers are on call everyday, even on Christmas Day.

Note for Editors:

In addition to the entry fee, we encourage all participants to raise as much as they can to help the RNLI continue to save lives at sea. Once registered, an online fundraising page will be automatically set up for you. This can be personalised with a photo and message, and once shared with friends and family should help boost your fundraising.

The race will start in the middle of Southsea Common. The route is 2.5km, so the 5k race will consist of running the route twice, and the 10k four times.

The 1K Santa Saunter is a family friendly fun walk. Water refills will be available for runners, however participants should bring their own bottles. Toilets and a range of public car parks are all nearby, we'd encourage participants to use public transport if possible.

RNLI Media contacts

· Beth Robson Regional Media Officer (North and East and South East), 07977728294

· For enquiries outside normal business hours, contact the RNLI duty press officer 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.

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.