Swanage lifeboat team members are ‘dashing through the snow’ this Christmas to raise money to help save lives at sea.
Six members of the lifeboat crew will take on a ‘Reindeer Run’ over the weekend of Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th of December 2020. It’s an annual RNLI event with runners traditionally dressed in festive costume including reindeer outfits.
Three pairs will each run 7 kilometres of the Dorset coastline between Swanage and Poole – bringing the combined sprint to a total of 21 kilometres.
Saving Lives at Sea
All proceeds from the sponsored Reindeer Run will go towards the RNLI – the charity that helps rescue people in trouble at sea.
Crew members Steve Williams, Alan Parmenter, Fergus Holland, Ant Hole, Matt Steeden and Becky Mack are currently nearing a £500 fundraising target.
Volunteer crew member Becky Mack said:
“When the details of the virtual run came through I sent a message to the crew to see who would like to take part.
“Six of the crew signed up straight away, so we came up with a challenge for our own version of the Reindeer Run.
“With our lifeboat week cancelled in 2020 and the local lifeboat shop having been closed for much of the year, we have lost our usual opportunities to raise money for the RNLI. This event has given us a chance to help raise some money and encourage each other to get out training ready for our run.”
The RNLI is still hard at work in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A woman who was rescued by the RNLI after falling 40 feet down a cliff near Swanage is among 13 survivors thanking the crews for their service and wishing them a merry Christmas.
Four years ago, Amy Welford fell while abseiling down Anvil Point – and Swanage Lifeboat Crew was quickly on the scene to rescue her.
“We’ve always been very thankful of those that came on the day, I’ve always sung their praises and the fact that they go from being in their day job and like five minutes later being out on the ocean. It’s quite a drastic thing and it’s something which I think takes a certain type of person.
“With coronavirus we haven’t been able to go down (to the station) but every time that we went down to the coast at Swanage I would always make an attempt to go to the lifeboat station. My mum likes to go to the shop – most of our Christmas shopping tends to come from there.
“It goes through my mind quite a lot – not just at Christmas but the thought that I wouldn’t have got to see my niece for her first Christmas, seeing my friends and family. Things could have been much different that day and I got very lucky’.
“If I should ever find myself in a similar predicament I won’t be alone, I will have people that will help me, that will literally drop what they are doing in a second and go and help someone they don’t even know so I would say thank you.”
Watch Amy’s interview
Sponsor the Swanage RNLI crew members
Anyone who wants to donate should visit the fundraising website.