Dozens of emergency services from across the West Country will be gathering on Burnham-On-Sea’s seafront today (Sunday, August 9th) for the town’s annual rescue services day.

Scores of displays and demonstrations will be held on Burnham seafront and beach from 10am to 4pm with displays of hovercrafts, lifeboats, ambulances, fire engines and more.

Burnham’s Mayor Michael Clarke and MP James Heappey will open the event, which is also known as the ESCAPE Day (the Emergency Services Community Awareness and Promotion Event).

Over 20 different emergency groups will be taking part, including BARB, the RNLI, HM Coastguard, Avon and Somerset Constabulary, Somerset Fire and Rescue and the ambulance service.

Vehicles and teams from each service will be on hand during the day and life-saving demonstrations will take place in the sea and on the beach, giving spectators a unique chance to see their work up-close.

Others groups involved include St John Ambulance, Blood bikes, Somerset 4×4 Response, Marine Life Rescue, Avon Search and Rescue, British Red Cross, SCC Civil Contingencies Team, Environment Agency, Police mounted section, The Rotary Club, Burnham Lions and Burnham Radio Club.

This year’s event will also be held on the same day as the Stert Sea Swim, which begins at 2pm. Over 80 swimmers will swim across the bay to Stert Island and back.

The final demonstration of the day will be a fly-past of microlights, weather permitting by Skywatch at about 4pm.

Event organiser Roger Flower from BARB Search & Rescue told “This year’s event will be bigger than previous years with more rescue services involved so there will be lots of great demonstrations to watch and activities. It will be a super opportunity to see the work of our local emergency services at first hand and support them.”

BARB, the charity that operates Burnham’s rescue hovercrafts, has organised the popular event since it started in 2004.