RNLI lifeguard patrols extended to every day at Croyde Bay throughout October

Lifeguards have recorded a 100% increase in the number of people visiting beaches this year in comparison to last year. Credit: RNLI

The RNLI has announced lifeguards are to be on patrol at Croyde Bay in Devon every day throughout October.

It comes as despite challenges posed by lockdown restrictions. 

The charity has provided lifeguard cover on 76 beaches across the South West this summer, with a 100 % increase recorded in the number of visitors to beaches in comparison to 2019.

Matt Whitley, RNLI Lead Lifeguard Supervisor for North Devon says; "We are very grateful for the addition of lifeguard patrols at Croyde during the week, as well as at the weekends and during October half-term. 

There will be three lifeguards on duty so please make sure you listen to their safety advice and swim between the red and yellow flags. 

Matt Whitley, RNLI Lead Lifeguard Supervisor for North Devon

‘As we head into Autumn, there tends to be regular swells, warm water temperatures and changeable weather patterns, so having a lifeguard presence at one of our most popular beaches will provide the preventative actions required to warn beach users of any dangers and keep people safe. 

"2020 has been one of the busiest summers for our lifeguards on the beaches in the South West and even at the beginning of September, our beach and water statistics were significantly greater in the first week of September compared to previous years.  

Woolacombe Beach will have cover at weekends and during the October half-term.  Credit: ITV News West Country

Woolacombe beach will also have cover at weekends and during the October half-term. 

The following 10 beaches will continue to have weekend and every day of October half-term holiday (Saturday 17 October to Sunday 1 November): 

Porthcurno beach is another site that will continue to have weekend and every day of October half-term. Credit: ITV News West Country

Cornwall - Poldhu, Porthcurno, Treyarnon, Sandymouth, Hayle Towans, Chapel Porth, Holywell Bay and Crantock 

Devon – Woolacombe and Bantham 

While full time cover will continue until 1 November on the following 17 beaches:   

 Cornwall - Tregonhawke, Praa Sands, Fistral, Towan, Watergate Bay, Mawgan Porth, Porthtowan, Perranporth, Gwithian, Porthmeor, Sennen, Constantine, Harlyn, Polzeath, Widemouth and Summerleaze. 

Devon – Croyde  

We’d really encourage anyone planning on going in the water to head to one of the lifeguarded beaches around the region where lifeguards will be on hand to offer advice and they can enjoy their activity safely. 

Tom Mansell, Regional Lifesaving Lead 

 "Where there are no flags, there is no lifeguard service.

People are being encouraged to head to one of the lifeguarded beaches around the region Credit: ITV News West Country

Those who can’t make it to a lifeguarded beach can help keep themselves safe by taking note of the safety signage at the entrance to the beach, going with a friend or telling someone on the shore where they are going, at the same time always being aware of the conditions and their own capabilities in the water. 

Also make sure to:

  • Keep a close eye on your family – on the beach and in the water.

  • Those who enjoy walking and exploring the coastline should check the weather forecast and local tide times before setting out and carry a means of communication. 

  •  If you fall into the water unexpectedly, fight your instinct to thrash around, lean back, extend your arms and legs, and float. In an emergency dial 999, and ask for the Coastguard’ 

 RNLI lifeboat crews have been operating throughout the pandemic and continue to be on call 24/7 ready to respond to emergencies when their pager goes off.