The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) has today released its rescue figures for 2021, which show a total of 408 lives saved by the charity’s lifeboat crews and lifeguards last year – more than one life saved every single day, and a 17% increase in the number of lives saved on the previous year.

The charity is now putting out its own Mayday call as it faces yet another busy summer. With high numbers of visitors expected as people continue to choose to holiday closer to home, more funds are needed to ensure the lifesaving service is able to keep everyone safe.

During 2021 the volunteer crew of Porthcawl RNLI launched the charity’s inshore lifeboats 69 times and aided 98 people which was the second highest number of people aided by an RNLI lifeboat station in Wales, with the highest number of people aided being 143 by The Mumbles RNLI Lifeboat crew. The Porthcawl RNLI crew saved 11 lives – the highest number of lives saved by an RNLI lifeboat station in Wales during 2021.

Philip Missen MBE, Porthcawl RNLI’s lifeboat operations manager said: ‘‘Summer is our busiest time of year, with thousands of people at risk of getting into danger by the water. Ordinary people just enjoying days out with family or friends.

‘Mayday is our own call for help, as we rely on the generosity of the public to take part in events like the Mayday Mile and raise the funds that allow us to be there when we’re needed most. But we need to be ready. Training, kit, stations, fuel … these are just some of the things we need to save lives, and that your fundraising can help provide.’

The RNLI’s Mayday national fundraiser begins on Sunday 1 May and will run for the whole month across the UK and Ireland. You can start off May on the right foot by taking part in the Porthcawl RNLI Mayday Walk on Sunday 1 May which starts from Porthcawl lifeboat station at 11am with a choice of distances.

Philip Missen added: ‘It’s clear from these new figures that demand for our services is continuing to rise, with our lifesavers dropping everything to run to the lifeboat station when the call comes. Every penny raised during Mayday will go towards ensuring we are ready to save even more lives this year.’

To sign up for the Mayday Mile, or to make a donation in support of the RNLI’s lifesavers, visit