A weekend when all of the Weston RNLI volunteer family were busy. The fundraisers out collecting donations and the volunteer crew saving a kayaker while on exercise.
Weston Sea Angling Association held their annual open beach fishing competition on Saturday 4th October. This continued an event which has been running for 30 years and was sponsored by PRV Engineering. They raised £550 towards the Weston RNLI Lifeboat Station Appeal. Mike Tanner, Chairman, presented the cheque to Charlotte Conroy, Lifeboat Operations Manager.
The Great Western Chorus gave an entertaining and enjoyable performance in the Weston Victorian Methodist Church for the RNLI on Saturday 4th October 2014. They were ably supported by the Waves of Harmony Ladies group who also sang beautifully. The songs ranged from folks songs to a medley of Andrew Lloyd Webber songs. There was a good sized audience who were most appreciative. The event was supported by Santander Bank and in total £1926 was raised towards the new lifeboat station. The evening was rounded off by a joint performance from both groups and then a heart-warming rendition of the Lifeboat Hymn, “Eternal Father! Strong to save.”.
Sunday morning 5th October started well despite an atrocious weather forecast. Members of the fundraising branch turned out early to support a Triathlon organised by Freak Events being held on the seafront in Weston. Their function was to provide marshalling for the event which started and finished by the Temporary Lifeboat Station on Knightstone Causeway. The marshalling went off without incident and, including donations from the organisers and donations collected in buckets, approximately £356 was raised towards the new station.
Peter Elmont, chairman of Weston RNLI fundraisers said. ‘We were all busy. As always we welcome the generosity of organisations such as the Sea Anglers and Freak Events who raise money for us. At least we had a relaxing Saturday evening listening to the fabulous Great Western Chorus. The Waves of Harmony, although only in existence for a short time, sang so beautifully we all rejoiced.’
Due to the Triathlon, Sunday exercise for the RNLI volunteers on Weston-super-Mare station did not start until 16:00 hrs. At just after 1600 hrs, as the crew were about to return their lifeboat to the station at Knightstone Harbour, a call was received from Swansea Coastguard who control the Bristol Channel. A Kayaker was having difficulties off Swallow Rocks, a dangerous obstacle about quarter of a mile off Sand Point in the Bristol Channel. The lifeboat proceeded at full speed to the casualty and upon arrival the casualty was found to be struggling against the strong current. He was attempting to round Swallow Rocks to get into Sand Bay. The Lifeboat picked up the casualty and his kayak and took him to Sand Bay. There he was dropped off to continue his paddle in calm water. The Lifeboat returned to Station arriving at 16:50 and was refuelled and ready for service at 17:30.
Nigel Congram, the volunteer RNLI helmsman said; ‘It was easy for us as we were already afloat. Once again this shows the strength of the currents in the Bristol Channel and the need for caution.’