Biggest ever Southampton presence for life-saving charity

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) will be celebrating its attendance at the 40th Southampton Boat Show (12 – 21 September 2008) with its biggest ever presence at the show. The charity that saves lives at sea will, for the first time, host a series of seminars for leisure boaters in partnership with the RYA, Sea Start and Helly Hansen; as well as giving show visitors the chance to experience the RNLI’s virtual lifeboat training experience on stand B73, a free lifejacket clinic on stand C9 and the opportunity to get on board an RNLI all-weather lifeboat in the marina (berth 61).

The four RNLI seminars will offer leisure boaters a ‘bite-sized’ twenty minute look at subjects ranging from lifejackets and taking a boat on a cross-channel passage to diesel engines and also a light-hearted look at stylish survival at sea – the latest fashion and clothing technologies for men and women on the water.

The RNLI seminars will be supported by the Royal Yachting Association, Sea Start and Helly Hansen who have each put forward expert presenters to talk on the respective subjects of boating abroad (RYA), diesel engine maintenance (Sea Start) and stylish survival at sea (Helly Hansen).

RNLI sea safety volunteers will present the seminar on lifejackets, a subject that is a major focus for RNLI sea safety as it works to encourage more leisure boaters to automatically put a lifejacket on when they go to sea and then decide whether they should take it off. This stance forms the key element of the RNLI’s ‘Useless unless worn’ lifejacket awareness campaign.

Commenting on the new seminar series RNLI Marketing Manager, Richard Devereux says:

‘The RNLI seminar series has been created for those who enjoy having serious fun on the water and is open to all who attend the Southampton Boat Show. The twenty-minute seminars will provide a practical look at subjects ranging from lifejackets to ladies nautical fashion. We’re delighted to be working in partnership with the RYA, Sea Start and Helly Hansen and thank them for their time and commitment to our first seminar series.’

All are welcome to attend the RNLI Sea Safety Seminars but there are limited places, however each seminar topic will run twice a day at the Holiday Inn Lounge, Southampton Boat Show at the following times every day of the show:

11am – 11:20am & 2:20pm – 2:40pm – Lifejackets: sink or swim?
What to buy, how to fit and how to maintain

11:40am – 12pm & 3:00pm – 3:20pm – Adventuring abroad?
How to plan, what you need and what to take – in partnership with the RYA

12:20pm – 12:40pm & 3:40pm – 4:00pm – Suck, squeeze, bang, blow…
How to maintain your diesel engine, how to avoid breakdowns and what spares to take with you – in partnership with Sea Start

1pm – 1:20pm & 4:20pm – 4:40pm – One for the ladies….
Stylish survival at sea!

RNLI sea safety volunteers will be on stand C9 throughout the course of the show to provide a range of free sea safety advice, answer any queries or questions from the RNLI seminars and FREE lifejacket clinics will be available by popular demand. An RNLI Atlantic 75 in-shore lifeboat will feature on stand C9 and there will be the opportunity to talk to volunteer lifeboat crew about their lifesaving roles at the 24/7 marine search and rescue charity.

The RNLI membership team will also be on hand on stand C9 to answer queries from any existing supporters and to sign up new ones. Joining the RNLI costs from just over £5 per month and provides a range of features to help keep you safe on the water. Special incentives are provided for those signing up at the show.

The RNLI’s main stand (B73) will be located in the heart of the chandlery zone for the first time this year and, as well as the chance to experience the RNLI’s virtual lifeboat training experience the RNLI education team will be on hand daily to help inspire the next generation of RNLI supporters and volunteers. If it’s retail therapy you’re after then there will be plenty of RNLI goodies, perfect presents for friends and family – including Christmas cards for those organised shoppers!

Experience RNLI all-weather and inshore lifeboats afloat by visiting berth 61 in the Hydropool Marina.