In 2024, the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) will celebrate its 200th birthday and will be celebrating the occasion through the year.
The local RNLI fundraising organisation is the Salisbury, Wilton and District Branch. Most of the money raised by the branch is used to support the nearest lifeboat based at Mudeford at the mouth of the River Avon. In particular, to fund the crew’s training needs.
The branch is run by a small committee of volunteers under the chairmanship of Ray Stedman. Money is raised in three main ways – box collections at specific events in the Salisbury and Wilton area; boxes placed in pubs and shops; and specific fundraising events.
For example, the branch will have a stand at the Downton Cuckoo Fair on Saturday, 29th April and a box collection at Salisbury Racecourse on Thursday, 18th May.
One particular source of local support comes from the local Sea Shanty Group, The Navy Larks, who will be giving a concert in aid of RNLI at Wilton Church on Wednesday, 21st June. Later in the year, the branch is also holding a Golf Day at High Post Golf Club on Monday, 9th October.
Last year was a period of recovery after the branch’s activities were curtailed during Covid. However, the chairman was pleased with the fundraising efforts that took place. He said: “The Branch raised over £11,500, a 20% increase over 2021. The box collections in pubs and stores and the Golf Day were particularly successful.
“We also received a similar amount from In Memoriam donations.
“We hope we will raise even more in 2023 and look forward to the 200th birthday events.”
The branch is always looking for new members and fresh ideas for fundraising activities.
To find out more or to receive the regular branch newsletter, contact Ray via firstname.lastname@example.org or 07900 493215.
To find out more about the RNLI and its plans, and how you can help to support it, visit: www.rnli.org.