Tots shipshape to help sea heroes

Children from Clifton Lodge Nursery dress up as pirates and get a visit from the RNLI.
Children from Clifton Lodge Nursery dress up as pirates and get a visit from the RNLI.
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YOUR money or your life – please! Trainee pirates at a St Annes nursery have been raising money for the RNLI as part of the charity’s national SOS day.

Tots at Clifton Lodge made the most of their fund-raising fancy dress day, opting for a colourful mixture of sea creatures, Finding Nemo characters and the ‘scourge of the high seas’ – pirates.

A visit from ‘Sally’, the Lytham inshore lifeboat, was the highlight of the day and saw the youngsters clambering over the vessel to try on lifejackets.

Behind the lighthearted activities is a very serious message from the life-saving charity, which receives no Government funding and relies wholly upon donations.

The nursery has a close relationship with the Lytham Lifeboat service as several of the parents are volunteers and nursery owner Simon Turpie is a volunteer helmsman.

Simon told The Gazette: “The children really enjoyed having a look at the lifeboat, it’s fun but it’s also important they are aware of what we do as they live on the coast and spend time on the beaches and promenades.

“A fancy dress day is a fun way of raising money for the charity. The funds go towards everything from equipment to training, and is the only way we can keep this vital service running.”

Lytham has a volunteer force of 25 men and women who respond to emergency call outs off the South Fylde coast around 20 times per year, rescuing people who have fallen into the sea, stricken swimmers and fishermen who get into difficulties.

“Anyone can volunteer for the Lifeboat service, it’s a big commitment but you get fantastic training and it’s incredibly satisfying,” Simon added.

The Lytham Lifeboat crew will continue their fund-raising around the pubs and bars of the town centre tonight starting at The Taps on Henry Street.

The Gazette this year launched its Think Sea Safety campaign to raise awareness about the danger of the water after the tragic death of Blackpool teenager David Sagar.

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