Redcar Lifeboat Day goes virtual

The 2020 Lifeboat Day will be very different to any the 218-year-old Redcar lifeboat station has held before.

While some COVID-19 restrictions have been eased, face-to-face fundraising planned for Saturday 17 July won’t be going ahead as normal.

So instead the Redcar volunteers are taking to social media to boost their funds.

Dave Cocks, spokesman for Redcar RNLI, explains: ‘Lifeboat Day is the cornerstone of our annual fundraising effort. As a charity we rely almost entirely on local donations to keep us going.

‘Despite the lockdown our lifeboats have been as busy as ever. We’ve had 21 launches so far this year and now we really need to top-up our funds. Because we can’t hold our tradition collection in the town this year, we’re running a fundraising event on our Facebook page.

‘We’ve raised over £3,000 on some Lifeboat Days. We’ve set a modest target of £1000 for ourselves this year. We know people have been through tough times and not everyone will be able to support us but if we can reach our target that will be a great help to us.’

The crew are encouraging the public to hold their own fundraising events with the donations going towards the target.

The fundraiser can be found on the RedcarRNLI facebook page at

Lifeboat Days have been a tradition in the RNLI since 1891 when wealthy industrialist Sir Charles Macara answered the RNLI’s call for help, following a lifeboat disaster.

Five years earlier, 27 volunteers on lifeboats from Southport and Lytham St Anne’s died while trying to rescue sailors from the stricken vessel Mexico.

Charles and his wife Marion got a committee together and organised the first Lifeboat Saturday in Manchester in aid of the appeal. It was the world’s first charity street collection ever recorded, and the formula proved popular for decades to come.