Selsey Lifeboat Sponsored Walk 2018

6th May 2018

Sharon and Angus Sharon, Zoe, Russ and Mia

Sunday 6th May dawned clear and bright, holding out the promise of a beautiful, warm, sunny day to come. Indeed, it gave all the appearance of shaping up to be a perfect day for taking a walk along Selsey’s promenade and exploring the local countryside. It was a cheering thought – because this was the day that the Selsey RNLI was holding their annual Sponsored Walk around the Manhood Peninsula, and my, how people did respond to the weather’s invitation! So very different to the cold blustery weather in which the event took place last year.

The 10-mile round trip takes in some of the Peninsula’s pleasantest scenery including fabulous sea views, open fields, and Pagham Harbour Nature Reserve, so it should come as no surprise that many people get great pleasure from doing the walk. The additional bonus of raising funds for a very worthy cause means this pleasure can only be enhanced by happening on a lovely sunny day such as 6th May turned out to be.

With an advertised start time of 8am, the walk marshals and registration team gathered at the Lifeboat Station at 7.30am to prepare for the event only to find people already milling around the apron eager to get started. There followed a steady stream of registrations and it wasn’t long before the number of walkers exceeded that of last year. By the time registration closed at 10am, 113 people (more than 50% up on last year’s number), and quite a few dogs, were making their way around the route – and the first ‘walker’ had arrived back at the Boathouse having jogged all the way round!

Many of the walkers were ‘late deciders’, inasmuchas they had not planned their participation in advance and so had not arranged any sponsorship, but, encouraged by the weather, were eager to get involved and more than happy to make a donation to secure their place on the walk. The boosted numbers resulted in donations more than double that of last year. As said earlier, the invitation of the weather was great and I’m sure it played a massive part in encouraging people to turn out to support the RNLI.

This year’s favourite moment for me was when a couple who were visiting from Norfolk returned to the Boathouse waving a plastic carrier bag. They explained to me that they often go walking in their local area and always take reusable bags with them in which to put any rubbish that they find along the way, a very commendable act. Anyway, the contents of the bag, it was barely a quarter full, was the sum total of all that they found on their walk and so they were very complimentary about the cleanliness of the area – a great testament to the residents of, and visitors to, Selsey, and the pride they have in their local environment.

Many thanks to all the walkers and their sponsors, the marshalling team and everyone who supported the event. The fundraising team look forward to doing it all over again next year so put the date in your diaries now – Sunday May 5th 2019. There’s no guarantee the weather will be as kind next year as it was this, but you will certainly be assured of a warm welcome.