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Making a splash

Wednesday 4 November 2015

Colleagues attending CS Live 2015 at Newcastle (10 September) and London (5-6 October) may have been surprised by the sight of RNLI volunteers in full kit, accompanied in London by RNLI mascot Stormy Stan!  At both conferences, the charity had a stand and volunteer, Tom Hill, gave seminars about his experience of how MOD’s fast-stream skills programme had found that advocating for the cause, engaging senior colleagues and growing volunteer networks provided an excellent and very practical development project.

Fundraiser, James Warren, the RNLI’s Catherine Kaye and a team of Lifeboat Fund volunteers did a great job planning for the events and engaging delegates to promote this official Civil Service charity and its 150th Anniversary Appeal.  Incoming charity Chair, Mark Sedwill showed his support and RNLI crews from Tynemouth, Wells and Chiswick also proved brilliant ambassadors.

Nearly 140 expressions of interest were collected across the three days.  James and Departments’ own fundraising teams are following up with these people to ensure they get the information they need to become active supporters and fundraisers.   


In London, several visitors to the stand had reason to say ‘thank you’.  Iain Tebb had been rescued by RNLI Wells Coxswain, Allen Frary.  Allen had jumped on board Iain’s yacht in stormy conditions, inspiring Iain to become a crew volunteer at his own local lifeboat station, RNLI Littlehampton.  Another visitor to The Lifeboat Fund’s stand from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills told how her three children had their lives saved by the RNLI when stranded on a beach in the face of quickly incoming tide.  These experiences go to show that anyone – friends, relations, colleagues and their children - can unexpectedly find themselves extremely grateful to the RNLI and its brave volunteers.


We were delighted that CS Live London saw Allen and his son Mark from RNLI Wells meeting our volunteers, whose efforts are raising the money to help purchase a Shannon class lifeboat for Allen and his crew, to ensure they can rescue more people, more safely and quickly when that amazing new vessel is handed over in 2017.

Please donate to ensure Allen and the Wells crew get that much needed boat! 

Pictures are (top) Mark Sedwill, Allen Frary and other crew from RNLI Wells at CS Live London and (below) Chief Executive of the Civil Service, John Manzoni, meeting Stormy Stan with Home Office’s Janina Ciecióra