Sean’s Bike Ride for PLIRB Charity – New Date

Just a quick update on Sean’s progress in his charity bike ride plans, to raise money for us.

There are two lots of latest news to share on this … one is a change of date, the other is a little share of how Sean’s putting some extra fun into the FUNdraising part!

Things have been extremely busy for Sean lately and although he’s made major strides in both training and fundraising, he’s now also ended up with a clash of dates.

So, instead of staying with the original date of 13th September which was set as the London to Brighton 2020 charity bike ride date (as discussed in a previous post) Sean’s had a problem-solving rethink. The new date will be Saturday 26th September. Everything else is the same, it’s just the change of day and date!

And the fundraising? Sean’s giving page currently shows £155 + Gift Aid, whilst we’ve also received a couple of donations through the website and a crisp £50 to sponsor Sean. This means that already there’s £255 + in the pot as a result of Sean’s fundraiser, which is amazing. And coming soon, is a little idea to add more FUN to Sean’s fundraising efforts.

Check back soon or follow us on social media for the next update!

PLIRB is Now Static Trader’s Chosen Charity

As our supporters know, the pandemic has had a serious impact on our ability to fundraise to meet our running costs. But we have some exciting news! Rye Harbour-based company, Static Trader has chosen us as their charity to support for the next 12 months. What’s more, they have made a donation which will help out with both costs and fundraising!


Byron Whiteside, General Manager of local company Static Trader is no stranger to some of the volunteers here at the PLIRB – two of our team work at Static Trader! After chatting to these volunteers, Byron realised how the pandemic has affected our charity. In particular, as a businessman, Byron recognised that there’s a real problem when there are costs to pay but very little income since our major fundraisers in 2020 were cancelled due to the Covid pandemic.

Byron was keen to help, not only by choosing our rescue boat as Static Trader’s local charity to support, but also by taking care of one of our costs for us .. with a sponsorship donation of £1,000.

This very welcome donation is to fund the costs of printing our promotional merchandise, informational materials and posters. It will also help towards administrative printing costs.

“Giving my time is something I would have preferred to do, and something I’d love to do with Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat – I recognise how valuable their work is through my colleagues who volunteer with the boat. But although I can’t give my time in the same way they do, what I can do is give a donation and a helping hand to the charity.”

A donation, and then some …

This support is extremely timely for us, coming just in time to allow us to be able to have some charity greetings cards printed up. These have proved a popular fundraiser in the past. At the time of the discussions, the Ocean Ceramics Mad Hatter’s event was just around the corner as the only fundraiser event on our behalf all year! Thanks to the Static Trader donation and a quick printing turnaround, we were able to provide friend of the PLIRB Marian Mason with some of our cards to sell on the day. And sell she did, you can read all about that here!

Because it’s in this way, that Byron’s donation does more for us than ‘just’ help meet costs. Without this donation, we certainly wouldn’t have been able to create merchandise to sell over the coming months and into 2021, which would have been yet another fundraising source lost to us.

What’s more, having the cost of printing covered by the donation means that every penny one of our items is sold for comes straight back to us as funds raised. In turn, this will help us meet other running costs. Something our Treasurer, Stella Dunn is delighted about:

The treasurer’s role in a charity is always a fine balancing act – we need to raise funds continually and promote our services but often the cost is prohibitive. The sponsorship of our promotional fundraising goods by Static Trader is most welcome and generous, especially in this most challenging year when other avenues and opportunities have been so limited.”

Whilst it hasn’t yet been possible for Byron to come down to the boathouse for a formal thank you, a visit soon is on the cards (see what we did there?). In the meantime, Static Trader customers will have access to the donation pot which is now in the business’s sales office and PLIRB supporters will be able to look out for our brand new items for sale.

Sincere thanks to Byron Whiteside and Static Trader, from everyone at Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat

Whilst you’re here …

As an independent charity providing rescue services, we are run solely by volunteers. We receive no government or central funding, so we have to fundraise every penny needed to buy and maintain our equipment.

We also fundraise to pay our considerable running costs. Since the start of 2020, these have increased to over £10,000 a year.

If you like the work we do and would like to support us, your donation would really be appreciated.

Anything you can spare will help us to help those in danger on our local coastline.

Thank you so much, from the volunteers at Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat.

Community Project – Fairlight Cove Clean Up

The ‘new normal’ is a continued adjustment period, but thankfully restrictions are lifted enough for community project work to carry on.

So we’re happy to share that on Sunday 6th September we’ll be supporting a community project close to our hearts and our boathouse … the Fairlight Cove Clean-Up!

The clean-up has been organised and carried out by Fairlight-based community interest company Strandliners. Teams of 6 volunteers have carried out 8 sessions of mammoth rubbish clearing behind the main three rock berms of Fairlight Cove. However, although the rubbish is now  bagged up, there’s the significant problem of getting it all off the beach.

Which is where we’re able to help. Weather permitting, on Sunday 6th September we’ll be launching both our boats to go and pick up the rubbish bags from the cove. Everything will be brought back to the slipway, where it will then be removed by Rother Council.

The plan is that we won’t carry out a training launch on our usual Sunday session at the boathouse. Instead our volunteers will be there slightly later, preparing to launch around noon, to assist with the rubbish clearance. Volunteers are not required to assist, but if anyone wants to stop by and speak to StrandlinersCIC about their work and how to get involved, they will be at the boathouse around noon.

More than a beach clean …

It’s worth pointing out that this beach clearance project has involved a significant amount of time and huge effort by the community volunteers involved in the Strandliners’ clean up. Every piece of debris and rubbish has been counted and sorted before being bagged up for clearance. This is so that firm data on the types, spread and impact of plastic and polystyrene pollution can be gathered. In turn, this data will inform wider conservation and environmental concerns and projects. There is more information on this in the Rye News and on the Strandliners website and social media.

We are very pleased to be able to assist with this community project, and to help preserve our local beaches. Check back for updates and photos of the rubbish retrieval soon!

If you would like to know more about Strandliners please visit or follow on Twitter at info@strandlinerscic.

Image credits: Dee Rampling, thanks to StrandlinersCIC 

Whilst you’re here …

As an independent charity providing rescue services, we are run solely by volunteers.

We receive no government or central funding and have to fundraise every penny needed to buy and maintain our equipment and to pay our considerable running costs.

Since the start of 2020, our running costs have increased to around £10,000 a year.

If you like the work we do and would like to support us, your donation would really be appreciated.

Anything you can spare will help us to help those in danger on our local coastline.

Thank you so much, from the volunteers at Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat.

Charity Fundraising Events – Ocean Ceramics Garden Party Update

It’s been a busy bank holiday weekend at the boathouse, and also for local ceramic artist and friend of PLIRB, Marian Mason.

After many months with all charity fundraising events cancelled, on Sunday 30th August, Marian was able to successfully social-distance her Mad Hatter’s Garden Party fundraiser. Marian holds this event every summer, to raise money for us here at Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat, plus St. Michael’s Hospice.

Although the weather started off a bit dubiously, the sun did come out and Marian was able to open her lovely ceramics studio, plus her garden, to visitors for the day.

Marian’s very aware of the issues local charities like ourselves are now facing, as charity fundraising events have been cancelled across the UK. With the loss of our fundraising Open Day, which is the major event for raising our running costs, things have been looking very worrying.

With restrictions not yet lifted enough – and certainly not recommended – for large-scale fundraisers, Marian’s once more helping us along with a local fundraiser. As part of her annual Garden Party and Open Studio event, Marian dedicated a section of her studio to PLIRB, as well as a donation pot and leaflets about our Weather Lottery participation.

Many of Marian’s generous visitors seemed to like our latest greetings cards – our beach image cards were a particularly good seller at Ocean Ceramics, which seems quite fitting! Plenty of donations were also popped into the pot and we’re pleased to share that Marian raised a total of £86.50 for the PLIRB charity.

We would like to say a huge thank you to Marian for her hard work in holding this event, and her charity fundraising on our behalf. With the shadow of the pandemic still lurking, every penny counts towards our annual running costs and all of us here at Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat is very grateful to Marian. Thank you so much!

Community Support – Ocean Ceramics, Winchelsea Beach

It’s been a very bad year for everyone, but as things are now returning to the ‘new normal’ we’re very pleased to share that there’s a bit of good news on the fundraising front.

Friend of the PLIRB, Marian Mason at Ocean Ceramics is opening up her garden for one of the few charity events 2020 that it’s still possible to hold, her Mad Hatter’s Garden Party. 

Of course, any of the charity events 2020 still brings come with the social distancing twist, and the outdoor space of Marian’s lovely garden makes this possible.  The Mad Hatter’s Garden Party offers:

  • Access to Marian’s lovely studio, with Marian’s fabulous, original ceramics for sale
  • Fortune teller
  • Stalls
  • Refreshments
  • “Mad Hat” competition with prizes

Marian is kindly hosting some of the PLIRB greetings cards and calendars (yes, 2021 is around the corner already), as well as a donation pot for PLIRB. This is because Marian’s Mad Hatter event is a fundraiser for her two chosen charities – Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat and St. Michael’s Hospice.

So, if you’re looking to finally enjoy a bit of ‘out and about’ time over the August Bank Holiday weekend, please support Marian’s Garden Party and help to support two local charities at the same time.

For updates on this event:

All the volunteers at Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat would like to say a huge thank you to Marian for fundraising for us at her special event, we really do appreciate it.

Community Support – Sean’s Charity Bike Ride 2020 for PLIRB

Getting back into the community after such a strange time is great, but what is even greater is that our community has our back.

As we’ve been sharing lately, local communities and businesses have been amazing in helping us, and the latest news on this is that Sean O’Sullivan, from local business SOS Entertainment, is planning his charity bike ride 2020 in support of Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat!

Staying rescue-ready throughout the lockdown took some doing, but it’s something we’re very happy to have been able to maintain. However, staying afloat financially whilst not being able to actively fundraise across the majority of the year is something we continue to have difficulty with. As a work colleague of two of our volunteers, Sean’s been quietly trying to think of ways to help.

His original idea, revealed on his own blog, was to take part in the London to Brighton charity bike ride 2020 and to gain sponsorship funds for PLIRB. Unfortunately, soon after signing up and organising a giving page for the event, the L2B event was cancelled.

But, with over £100 already raised – including a fabulous, anonymous £50 note – and a gruelling training schedule already underway, Sean’s decided to carry on in true ‘independent’ charity fashion!

Sean’s sticking with the original ride date of Sunday 13th September 2020 and has now organised his own route, out through Kent and back to the PLIRB boathouse at Pett Level. At just over 54 miles, this is just shy of the 55 miles of the L2B event, but is still going to be a tough way to raise vital funds for us.

“It’s an alternative route, but it’s close to the distance the L2B would cover, so it’s good news that the fundraising can still go ahead! Of course, the new route is pretty much totally flat, which is also good news for me!”

A poster will be ready shortly, but in the meantime, for updates on this event please check out the Event information on the PLIRB Facebook page.

And if you’d like to help, please share Sean’s #SOSpedalforPLIRB giving page.

All the volunteers at Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat would like to say a huge thank you to Sean for going to these extreme (54+ mile) lengths to help us. We really do appreciate it and we look forward to greeting you at the boathouse when you complete your marathon charity bike ride 2020!