Chiswick Lifeboat Volunteers Get Set for Boat Race

Local crew will be responsible for the safety of the huge crowds attending

Rosie Allen and Ella de Breuil
Rosie Allen and Ella de Breuil - Chiswick RNLI volunteers. Picture: RNLI

March 14, 2023

This year as usual the Chiswick RNLI lifeboat will be on duty on Boat Race day to help ensure the safety of the thousands of people attending the event.

The annual competition between crews from Oxford and Cambridge universities takes place on Sunday 26 March.

Two of the volunteers in the local crew, Ella du Breuil and Rosie Allen are lifesavers on and off the water.

The pair have launched more than 400 times since they both signed up at the age of 17. But it’s not just on the water where the trained medics are keeping people safe.

Ella said, ‘As well as being volunteer lifeboat crew I’m also a qualified paramedic. I’ve always been interested in sailing and the sea and had previously volunteered for the RNLI at a coastal lifeboat station, so when I moved to London in 2008 I took the opportunity to join Chiswick RNLI.

‘This year will be my 20th year as a RNLI volunteer, and I’ve recently qualified as a Commander on the Chiswick lifeboat so it’s a very special year for me.’

They will be part of a team operating on the day along the course which includes another lifeboat and nine inshore rescue boats.

The RNLI, which operates four lifeboat stations on the Thames covering a 57-mile stretch, is the official charity partner of The Gemini Boat Race 2023.

. Wayne Bellamy, Station Manager at Chiswick RNLI said: ‘We’re proud to be the official charity partner of the Gemini Boat Race and to be part of the historic race between Oxford and Cambridge Universities.

‘The partnership aims to raise funds to support the Thames’ lifesaving service with all proceeds going towards the running costs of the four RNLI stations along the river.

‘Our community safety teams have also been working with venues and schools along the course to provide lifesaving water safety training and encourage familiarity with throwlines.’

To support the Boat Race and RNLI Thames crews, you can donate to save lives here.

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