This growing surf lifesaving club in Cornwall is helping people of all ages to stay safe in the water while having fun and improving skills
Surf lifesaving is a unique sport because the aim is not just to compete and have fun, but to potentially save lives too.
Until the movement was brought to Britain by an Australian called Allan Kennedy, the only recognised qualification for a beach lifesaver was carried out in still water.
St Agnes Surf Lifesaving Club in Cornwall was founded with his help in 1954 after a tragedy at the beach made locals realise their current equipment and methods were inadequate.
The club aims to protect against loss of life at sea through education, training and action, as well as promote the sport of surf lifesaving and get people having fun outdoors.
Over the last 65 years, the club has led improvements in lifeguarding and water safety in the area, as well as given generations of locals the chance to enjoy all the coast has to offer.
Today St Agnes is the second oldest and the largest surf lifesaving club in the UK, with more than 600 members from as young as five.
The National Lottery helped to fund a project called Safer Beaches for All, which has been “transformational” for the club according to chairman Joel Henthorn.
The money assisted with buying new equipment such as stand-up paddle boards and paddle boards to increase adult participation in training sessions.
The scheme also aided improvements in coaching skills and an increase in volunteer lifeguard patrols on the beach, with a new rescue jet ski, rescue raft and quad bike purchased to assist efforts.
In addition, St Agnes extended its surf cadet outreach programme to give 420 children from schools across Cornwall the chance to experience surf lifesaving over three days.
To find out more about St Agnes Surf Lifesaving Club visit their website: https://stagnessurflifesavingclub.co.uk/
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