Giant artwork etched onto Scarborough beach to raise awareness of RNLI rescues and fundraising campaign

A giant 100m artwork has been etched in the sand on the Scarborough coastline.

Sand artists have drawn an RNLI Lifeboat on the beach to raise awareness of the number of lives the charity has saved over the past year.

The work also marks the start of the RNLI's summer fundraising campaign to buy equipment for lifeboat crews and lifeguards who patrol beaches up and down the region's coastline.

With any big picture, you can't actually see the image while you're doing it. You're working in micro-scale. So we have to plan out our image. Then we take a stick and we line out the image, and then we take rakes and basically just colour it in.

James Wardley, Artist

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution has released its rescue figures for 2020, showing that a total of 349 lives were saved by the charity’s lifeboat crews and lifeguards throughout the year.

That’s almost one life saved every single day.

349

Lives in the UK were saved by RNLI lifeboat crews and lifeguards in 2020.

140

Lives in the UK were saved by RNLI lifeboat crews between June 1, 2020 - August 31, 2020

The figures has also revealed that in the three month period between 1 June – 31 August, RNLI lifeboat crews saved 140 lives. That is an increase of 32% from the previous year.

The charity has put the sharp spike in rescues down to people flocking to the coast when coronavirus travel restrictions were eased.



The charity also reported 42 lifeboat launches per day over the summer period, which is almost double the number launched throughout the rest of the year.

The charity is anticipating 2021 will be their busiest summer yet as many people opt to holiday at home because of the on-going pandemic.

In preparation for the busy summer period, the RNLI has launched an urgent fundraising appeal, asking supporters to take part in The Mayday Mile.

The challenge asks participants to swim, run, cycle, or simply walk one mile between Saturday 1 May – Monday 31 May raising vital funds to support the RNLI to keep people safe at the coast.

The giant sand artwork on Scarborough beach is to raise awareness of The Mayday Mile fundraising challenge.

The lifeboat’s bow features the number 349, to highlight the number of lives that were saved by the charity’s brave lifeguards and lifeboat crews last year.