Annual harbour day celebrates the 218 years of dedication by Sunderland's RNLI team
A seaside celebration gave visitors the chance to discover what it's like to be part of a lifesaving team as a charity opened its doors to boost its funds.
Sunderland RNLI Station hosted its annual Harbour Day, marking 218 years of its work in the city.
It brought together a host of organisations, with the volunteers teaming up with Sunderland Lifesaving Club to put first aid demonstrations to show what they can do, as well as encourage others to learn.
Sunderland Coastguard Rescue Team, Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service and the Military Police attended, with a craft fair, bric-a-brac sale and nautical-themed stall drawing in the crowds.
A cake stall was also run by Andrew Cantle’s mother Ann, who continues to support the charity where her son had volunteered as a crewman until the Moorside man moved to York.
The 27-year-old was working as a pilot for Manx2 Airlines when he was one of six people who died when their plane crashed in 2011.
The day was formally opened by Georgina Mordey, winner of Top Model of Sunderland 2018, as the former St Robert’s of Newminster student is supporting the charity as she works towards her entry into Supermodel England in November.
Tantastic, Sunderland’s community steel pan band, also performed during the day.
Helmsman Paul Nicholson said: “This is an annual event and it’s our main fundraiser, so it’s at the pinnacle of our efforts to collect funds.
“It’s a great opportunity for the public to come down and help us raise some money, but also get the chance to see some of the kit we use and speak to our volunteers first hand to find out about what opportunities we have.
“As well as crew members, we’re always looking for fundraising volunteers and if anyone is interested, they can always find out more.
“It costs £1,000 to put each crew member through their training each year and we currently have 22 members.
“It was also great to welcome down Georgina, who spent time having a chat to each one of the stalls.”
Sunderland RNLI Lifeboat Station is the oldest continually operational lifeboat in the United Kingdom and opened in 1800 before being adopted by the RNLI in 1865.