Thousands of people headed to Burnham-On-Sea’s seafront on Sunday for the town’s annual rescue services day.
30 organisations from across the West Country gathered along The Esplanade to provide displays and demonstrations through the day involving hovercrafts, lifeboats, ambulances, fire engines and more.
Those taking part included BARB, Burnham RNLI, HM Coastguard, Avon and Somerset Constabulary, Somerset Fire and Rescue, and the ambulance service.
Vehicles and teams from each service were on hand during the day and life-saving demonstrations took place in the sea and on the beach, giving spectators a unique chance to see their work up-close.
High winds led to a gig rowing race being cancelled due to the stormy sea conditipons. A fly-past of microlights and a hovercraft flying demonstration planned for later in the day also fell victim to the high winds. But spectators were able to watch dozens of displays and see training exercises by lifeboats and lifeguards.
This year’s event also saw 260 people take part in a new fundraising run, the Rescue Rainbow Run, which was hailed a success by organisers – see more here.
BARB, the charity that operates Burnham’s rescue hovercrafts, has organised the popular event since it started in 2004.
BARB’s latest hovercraft, the Spirit of Lelaina II, was formally unveiled during the day with a naming ceremony being held, as pictured here – see more here.
Event co-organiser Roger Flower from BARB told Burnham-On-Sea.com: “We had a slow start due to the overcast weather and strong winds, but things quickly picked up we are really pleased with how the event overall.”
“We had 30 exhibitors and stalls this year which meant there was lots to see for the spectators. The RNLI and Lifeguards were able to carry out their demos as scheduled, which were very informative and interesting. The day again showed how lucky we are to have such a great team of rescue services.”
Members of the public were able to get close to the crews and the equipment that helps to save lives across the region, here including a mountain rescue pack.
Later in the afternoon, 30 bikes from Somerset Motorcycle Group arrived on The Esplanade after completing their ‘Teddy Bear Run’ in aid of BARB, which started in Highbridge and ran up to the Chew Valley and across the Mendips.