After losing two Open Days to lockdown, Open Day 2021 was an amazing success, so we didn’t dare hope that our 2022 Charity Open Day would even come close to matching it. But the sun was shining (literally after the rain) and we’re pleased to share that thanks to our volunteers, friends, their families, local businesses and a celebrity comedian, we almost made it!

plirb charity open day 22

Yes, 2022’s charity Open Day final total is a fantastic fundraising total of £6225.20!

Although this doesn’t quite beat last year’s £6,800+ total, we remain amazed and overwhelmed by our local community’s support. This year, the gross amount received from the event was actually more than last year! It’s just that with rising costs, our overall spend on the event was higher this time around, which of course has an impact on the funds raised.

But this doesn’t take away from the superb success of the event and the kind generosity of all our supporters, including those who came on the day, those who donated items to sell or include in the raffle and those who gave additional donations in lieu of being able to come along.

High spots of this year’s Open Day included …


Our busy volunteers and supporters who helped on the day …
charity open day 22, bbq team
charity open day, raffle ticket volunteers

Our stalwart team of BBQ volunteers, who did an amazing job keeping the food going for our visitors, despite the heat in the ‘kitchen’!

Our raffle ticket sales and folding up team of volunteers were kept very busy throughout the event and right up to the last minute with online sales too!

charity open day 22, bar team

Our shanty-style bar, complete with licence and volunteers, and of course our customary Pimm’s!

Whilst the cake stall was laden with goodies thanks to donations from local supporters, bakers and businesses.

charity open day, play your cards right game
charity open day hoopla game

Games and activities organised by our crew volunteers … after all, it wouldn’t be Open Day without Shaun’s “Play Your Cards Right” game.

And up on the sea wall, other volunteers offered happy times with hoopla, whack-a-rat and our new “Get Yer Kit On” timed challenge!

Our extra special visitors and supporters …
charity open day, official opening by Rye Town Crier
charity open day, official opening by Rye Town Crier

Paul Goring, Town Crier of Rye came along to officially open our event at 11:00 am.

… Which was the kind of ‘shout’ we really love to hear and set the tone for our special event!

charity open day, mayor of Winchelsea
community support from Battle Abbey Chapter, Rose Croix 817

The new Mayor of Winchelsea, David Merrifield, and Lady Mayoress came down to join in the fun and to meet members of the local community.

And a special visit from Darren McCarthy of Battle Abbey Chapter, Rose Croix 817, with a donation cheque for £400. More about this on another blog post.

Our fun dog show was a pawfect success
charity open day, fun dog show
charity open day, fun dog show

And over at our fun dog show, volunteer P had organised something special for pooches taking part in the activities. This event proved so popular!

Here’s a winner … little Bowie, with owner Molly (and mum Anne-Marie) – first prize for the most appealing eyes! Well done Bowie!

Sea display x 2, as it happened …

Our volunteer crews also gave a sea display. This had to be altered on the day, due to the rough seas and rising winds and although this curtailed the display, our visitors also had the chance to see our volunteers in real-time action, when they were tasked to assist a broken down jet ski. And although we were right in the middle of Open Day, it meant they were well placed for one of the fastest emergency launches ever!

charity open day, rescue launch
community support from Battle Abbey Chapter, Rose Croix 817

Recovering the Pulfer boat after the successful ‘shout’ to assist a broken down jet ski. The jet ski and two persons were recovered to the safety of Rye Harbour, before the boat returned to our boathouse.

Crew members attending the ‘shout’ included (left to right) John, Helm Shaun and Martin. Our beach and base teams were also involved, with responsive communications, launch and retrieval tasks

And of course our special raffle draw
Jo Brand and Kev at our charity open day 22

The final event of the day was the draw for the many generously donated items from local businesses and well-wishers, including the two star prizes of brand new e-bikes donated by Rye Bay E-Bikes.  

We were so lucky to have the wonderful Jo Brand to come along and do the honours for us. What a fabulous friend to our charity she is, joining in with plenty of fun and banter with the crowds and with our charity’s Chair, Kev, particularly. Jo made the drawing of the raffle so much fun and we were honoured that she came along to support our event.

We’re also especially grateful that Jo literally waited around at the end, for our crew to return from the rescue, and for our beach crews to safely bring the boat in, so that we could all have a team photo taken with her. Thanks Jo!



And of course to our amazing volunteers and their own friends and families who helped out with planning and delivering this and to everyone who attended or donated in whatever way to make the day a success.




This amazing amount will be used to support continued (and rising) running costs and to help us with some of our overall equipment and training projects.

To everyone who contributed to this fantastic result, thank you so much.


If you would like to support us, your donation will help us assist those in danger on our local coastline.

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