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October 9, 2005
Burnham-On-Sea sea rescue services jointly hold Storm Force Day

Children get a close-up view of a lifeboat with crew member Glenn Cutter

More than 50 children got to see the work of Burnham-On-Sea's lifeboat, hovercraft and coastguard up close on Saturday October 8th during a special awareness-raising day.

Coastguard Station Officer Steve Bird shows a family some cliff rescue gearThe 'Storm Force Day' involved seven seperate groups of children who had come from as far afield as Taunton and Bristol being given tours of each of the life-saving organisations, where they met the crews, learnt about their roles and heard about their latest rescues.

Organised by Tony Dheal, Burnham-On-Sea RNLI's education officer, he said the day had been a "resounding success" and hinted that it could become an annual event for Burnham.

The children were able to step onboard the lifeboats and hovercraft, and heard about the Coastguard's life-saving cliff rescue equipment.

The peak of the day came at 1pm when the visitors were able to watch both of the lifeboats simultaneously launch from the beach.

Children step onboard Burnham's Spirit Of Lelaina hovercraft. Ruth, Caleb, Hayden, Katie and Bonnie try out the cockpit of the hovercraft.RNLI Regional Education and Visits Officer for the South/West, Dave Cooling, said: "We were delighted that fifty-seven of our Storm Force members were able to enjoy an exciting morning at the station thanks to the hospitality of all the volunteers at Burnham-On-Sea (RNLI, Coastguard and Hovercraft)."

Storm Force is the name of the RNLI club for children, which helps to promote sea-safety awareness amongst the young.

The RNLI regularly hold 'Storm Force' events on nominated days at suitable lifeboat stations, and Saturday October 8th was the day chosen for the Burnham station this year.

A sale of lifeboat merchandise, along with seperate collections, also helped to raise more than £580 towards RNLI funds.

Burnham RNLI Supporters Group co-ordinator Jendy Weekes, after looking at her depleted stocks of souvenirs asked: "Can we hold a Storm Force event every couple of months please?"


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