The RNLI has issued its own ‘Mayday call’ to urge people to take part in the charity’s Mayday Mile fundraising event, reports Paul Scott.

The Mayday Mile challenges people to cover at least one mile in any way they like to help raise vital funds for the RNLI. Taking place throughout May, people can choose to cover the distance by walking, jogging, hopping, skipping, or more unusual methods, such as paddleboarding.

“Every Mayday Mile completed will help give our lifesavers everything they need to continue to keep people safe this summer – and beyond,” said Pete Emmett, head of engagement at the RNLI.

“It’s so easy to get involved, and to have fun whilst saving lives. Last year we saw miles covered on climbing walls, space hoppers, paddleboards and wearing wellies filled with baked beans! We hope to see many more people take up the fundraising challenge this year.”

The event was officially launched at the end of last month by four RNLI lifeboat crew who carried out the first Mayday Mile of 2022 along Southend Pier, whilst wearing their lifesaving kit. The pier is the longest leisure pier in the UK at 1.3 miles.

Figures released last month reveal that in 2021, Southend was the busiest coastal lifeboat station in the UK and Ireland, launching 147 times.

The data also highlights an overall increase in demand for the lifeboat services of the charity, with 8,868 lifeboat launches and 12,903 people helped – the equivalent of 35 people a day.

In total, the organisation saved the lives of 408 people, an increase of 59 on the previous year.

“The RNLI has been saving lives at sea for almost 200 years. We’ve seen a significant increase in the number of people around the UK and Ireland needing our help over the last year, and we are so proud that our brave lifesavers have been there to save them,” said Pete Emmett.

“But running a 24/7 lifesaving emergency service is expensive – and costs are rising – which is why we’re calling on people to support our lifesavers.”

Jack Lidster-Woolf, volunteer crew member at Southend RNLI, said that he hoped people will be inspired to sign up for the Mayday Mile.

“It’s so easy to get into danger by the water – the crew and I see first-hand the serious situations that people find themselves in, and where a few minutes could make all the difference. Keeping the crew ready for anything takes training, equipment and kit – all things that a Mayday Mile could help to provide,” he said.

To find out more, click here.

Main image credit: RNLI

This story was taken from the latest issue of Fishing News. For more up-to-date and in-depth reports on the UK and Irish commercial fishing sector, subscribe to Fishing News here or buy the latest single issue for just £3.30 here


Subscribe to Fishing News magazine today; never miss an issue and save 55%!