Littlehampton lifeboat volunteers thrilled with support for The Mayday Mile fundraising campaign

Volunteer crew members at Littlehampton RNLI Lifeboat Station have raised nearly £2,000 in a series of sporting fundraising challenges for The Mayday Mile fundraising campaign.

Friday, 4th June 2021, 1:49 pm
Updated Friday, 4th June 2021, 1:54 pm

Bea Homer Ian Foden and Hannah Presgrave cycled and ran throughout May for the annual campaign, which helps keep RNLI lifesavers kitted and trained to save lives at sea, and raised £1,934.06 between them.

Ian and Bea cycled a total of 771 miles, together with fellow crew members Adam Grummett and Ian Lindgren. They initially set a target of £515.15 and were thrilled to reach £840 by the end of the month.

The fundraising challenge was all the more poignant for Bea, as in 1988, she raised £15.55 for the RNLI through a sponsored walk and still proudly keeps her certificate.

From left, Hannah Presgrave, Ian Foden and Bea Homer running and cycling in Littlehampton as part of their epic fundraising challenge. Picture: RNLI/Beth Brooks

Fast forward 33 years and Bea is now volunteering with Littlehampton RNLI as shore crew.

She said: “I’ve always has a close affinity with the sea. I moved to Selsey from London as a small child and one of my earliest memories is of the maroons going off and watching brave people race to answer the call.

“Decades on, I’m so proud to be able to do the same. I’m so proud to be a crew member and ambassador for the RNLI. Moving to Littlehampton and discovering the 30-something-year-old certificate was a stark reminder that we remain a volunteer charity entirely funded by public generosity.”

Her partner Ian, who volunteers as crew at Littlehampton RNLI, pointed out that the RNLI, like many charities, will have suffered a loss of income during the pandemic.

Bea Homer proudly holds her fundraising certificate from 1988 in front of one of Littlehampton's lifeboats. Picture: RNLI/Beth Brooks

He added: “With many people expected to head to the coast for a much-needed break this summer, our resources could be stretched. Having been volunteer crew for nine years at Littlehampton RNLI, I wanted to get involved with the Mayday campaign to not only promote safety by the sea, but to help raise the vital funds we need to keep saving lives at sea.”

Hannah, who volunteers as crew and is also a community manager for the RNLI, ran nine 5km events dressed in her full RNLI lifeboat crew kit, raising £730.

She said: “The support and encouragement we have all had for our Mayday challenges has been absolutely amazing. The Mayday campaign is so important because we depend on voluntary donations to maintain our rescue service. Thank you, everyone.”

Bea and Ian joined Hannah in a 5km challenge in Littlehampton on May 29. They were supported by Littlehampton RNLI’s shop volunteers and fundraisers, who raised £364.06 through a special shop event and collection.