The Yellow Wellie title was particularly appropriate on The Parade as people were invited to walk a short distance with a wellington boot on their head. Not an easy task, as some people quickly found – including Island Echo’s editor – although the Mayor of East Cowes, Mike Lloyd, was among those who did manage to preserve a sense of balance.
Inside the station people were given conducted tours, enjoyed light refreshments and took part in a lucky dip. Children could colour in pictures and learn about knot-tying. The public could also view a life-saving demonstration off The Parade, given by the lifeboat crew.
Supporting the event on The Parade was a fire appliance from Cowes Fire Station, an ambulance from the Isle of Wight Ambulance Service and a display mounted by The Needles Coastguard Rescue Team. In addition the station’s neighbour, the Island Sailing Club, arranged for a group to sing sea shanties under a marquee over the lunch period.
While the RNLI’s commitment to its life-saving cause is unquestioned, the life-savers were sadly wanting when it came to a tug of war contest against local firefighters. All three efforts ended in total victory for the Cowes firemen! But the lifeboat volunteers could console themselves it was the taking part rather than the winning that counted.
The day not only involved RNLI volunteers with the station, but also enthusiastic members of the local Cowes Guild and its East Cowes branch. As well as raising the RNLI’s public profile the day raised £615 for the charity.