Players and directors from Hull FC rugby league club will visit Humber RNLI today to announce a major fundraising campaign for the lifeboat charity.
The club has made Humber RNLI its charity of the year and will raise both money and the profile of the lifeboat station at Spurn Point, which this year celebrates its 200th anniversary.
The link up, which will be introduced to Hull FC fans at their home opener against Huddersfield Giants on 12 February, could raise thousands of pounds for the charity.
To find out more about the life and work of the Humber lifeboat crew, first-team stars Sam Moa and Craig Hall, as well as Chief Executive James Rule and Community Director Jon Flatman from Hull FC, will all visit the remote lifeboat station today (Wednesday).
Dave Steenvoorden, Humber RNLI Superintendent Coxswain, said everyone at the lifeboat station was thrilled about Hull FC’s support.
He added: “Most of us are black and white and are all rugby league mad so when we heard Hull FC wanted to make us their charity of the year we were over the moon. Their support means a great deal to us, especially during our special anniversary year, and we’re looking forward to welcoming the players to Spurn Point to show them what being a lifeboatman is all about.
‘Just like a top class rugby league player, RNLI lifeboat crews have to train regularly to ensure we are at the top of our game. Saving lives at sea takes a lot of dedication and determination, and I’m sure the guys will recognise that there are some real similarities between us.”
Hull FC Chief Executive James Rule also commented: ‘We are extremely proud to be supporting the RNLI this year, particularly in such a significant year as they are celebrating their 200th anniversary, but also because of the RNLI links with the City of Hull and notably Spurn Point.
‘Everyone is aware of this area’s links with the fishing industry and we felt this would be a great way to respect that heritage and hopefully raise a good amount of money for an extremely worthwhile cause that many of us probably underestimate.’
As the only residential all weather lifeboat station, Humber RNLI is unique within the lifeboat charity. The first lifeboat was stationed at Spurn Point in 1810 by Hull Trinity House, with the RNLI taking over the running of the lifeboat station in 1911. In that time, hundreds of lives have been saved by the Humber lifeboat crews. Last year alone the lifeboat launched 44 times, rescuing 47 people.
The Humber RNLI crew has been invited to join Hull FC at their opening home game of the new 2010 season where supporters will have the chance to learn more about the charity before the game outside the KC Stadium main reception, while an official presentation will be made to the charity on behalf of the club inside the ground.
As well as that, a number of further events are planned throughout the season with more details to be announced soon.
Last year, Hull FC’s chosen charity was Children in Need, for whom Hull FC and their supporters raised over £12,000.
For more information about the 200th anniversary and to buy a year in Humber lifeboat station’s history, go to www.rnli.org.uk/humber200 or call 0161 7878779.
For further information about Hull FC, their partners and the new season, head to www.hullfc.com