Thursday 4th March marks 197 years of the RNLI.

Their rescues started with volunteers battling rough seas in open wooden boats, using pure strength and manual oars.

Today we have various types of modern equipped vessels but the level of commitment and bravery is the same.

Volunteers respond to emergency “shouts” to save stranded people, pets and boats in all weathers.

Their partners, family, friends and employers have to be understanding – as they can be called away at any hour of the day or night.

They rely on donations, legacies and sales of goods, online and in their charity shops.

We are lucky in Poole to have the RNLI College and Lifeboat station with modern craft to enable quick response for search and rescue.

Beach lifeguards and lifeboat stations in Dorset and the South West ensure that residents and visitors receive an amazing emergency service, sometimes helped by the coastguard helicopters.

Thank You to all RNLI volunteers across the country for many years of dedicated service – delivered with calm, supportive efficiency - saving many lives.

Yours sincerely,

Cllr Diana Butler

Creekmoor Ward