The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. The RNLI’s volunteer lifeboat crews rescue an average of 23 people a day around the coasts and waterways of the UK and the Republic of Ireland. From 235 lifeboat stations, they are well trained and equipped to put to sea in the most fearsome conditions when the call comes. RNLI lifeguards patrol more than 200 beaches in the UK. As well as rescuing people from the water, they are also on hand for first aid and safety advice, making sure everyone can make the most of their day at the beach. Are you passionate about the water? Do you want to be part of a lifesaving team? Whatever the reason for your interest in our work, we’d love to have you onboard. The RNLI is an independent charity and receives no government funding. We rely on public support.
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Grace Darling Memorial Row's fundraising page

Tamsin Thomas

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Hello I'm Dartmouth based BBC Presenter Monty Halls and with fisherman's daughter Rachel Cole I'm going to take on an epic record attempt in memory of those we have lost. Here's why....

On September 7 1838 the paddle steamer SS Forfarshire hit rocks during a ferocious storm off the Farne Islands in Northumberland. She was carrying sixty passengers, most of whom perished, however five crew members and four passengers managed to cling on to rocks. As morning came they were still there, losing strength as the storm still raged around them. This prompted one of the most famous rescues in the history of the RNLI.     

The keeper of a nearby lighthouse - William Darling - launched an audacious rescue in a small boat, rowed by himself and his 23 yeaar old daughter Grace. The story has entered the annals of seafaring history, as Grace held the baot steady in the storm whilst her father loaded the survivors one by one into the tiny vessel, to be rowed back to the sanctuary of the lighthouse.

On 7 September 2013, 175 years after Graace and her father set out into the teeth of the storm, BBC Presenter Monty Halls and Rachel Cole - both RNLI volunteers at their local lifeboat station in Dartmouth - will row seventy miles from Dartmouth around the Eddystone Lighthouse and back, as a tribute to the most famous rescue in the history of the RNLI. The row will raise funds for the RNLI so the charity's lifeboats can continue their work around the coast.

This row has never been attempted by a two person crew, and is expected to take in the region of 48 hours. Supporting the event will be the Round Britain Rowing Race, a prestigious event that has kindly donated one of their vessels for the record attempt.

There are powerful motivations for both of the rowers. The ashes of Monty's best friend - a fellow Royal Marine killed in Iraq - were scattered by the crew of the Salcombe RNLI lifeboat. Rachel's father was a fisherman, lost to a fishing accident when she was just fifteen. First on the scene was the Brixham RNLI lifeboat.

Thanks for visiting our page. Through Virgin Money Giving, you can sponsor us and donations will be quickly processed and passed to the RNLI. Virgin Money Giving is a not for profit organisation and will claim gift aid on a charity's behalf where the donor is eligible for this. We really appreciate all your support and thank you for any donations.

Recent donors

30.09.13 Tremendous effort and well done for raising money for such a worthy cause!

17.09.13 Spot on you two!

13.09.13 Congratulations on getting as far as you did!

11.09.13 Well done Rachel and Mont. If you'd turned left a bit and headed southwards you'd have got to Gibraltar by now! Great effort for a great cause.

09.09.13 Well done guys. Brilliant effort for such a good cause.

09.09.13 Well done to you both. Love you Rachel, so very proud xx

08.09.13 AMAZING effort Rachel and Monty. What courage you have xx

08.09.13 You never cease to amaze me! X


08.09.13 Doing an amazing job guys!!

08.09.13 An epic adventure for such a worth while cause - lots of luck Shannon

08.09.13 Thinking of you. Safe winds all the way. Ian, Wendy & Bumble.

07.09.13 Stay safe you guys and good luck.

07.09.13 Stay safe. Praying for a calm crossing.x

07.09.13 good luck to you both x

07.09.13 What an amazing person you are Rach you old sea dawg!! You are a truly amazing, generous person I'm so proud to call you one of my best friends. Gutted we couldn't make it to see you off but we are thinking of you!!

07.09.13 Good luck.

07.09.13 Good luck Rachel

07.09.13 Well done Rach, always amazing us with your lovely kind ways, so proud of the woman you have become. Go girl xxx

07.09.13 Uncle Moooont, love you more than daisies. GOOD LUCK to you both :)

07.09.13 Good luck to you both

07.09.13 Good luck guys :)

07.09.13 Best of luck

07.09.13 Thinking and sending you all the rowing power I can muster on this amazing challenge. From all your family in Mousehole x

07.09.13 Good luck


Running total

Total raised incl. Gift Aid:
Total donors:
Last donor:
Ingrid Kvale
Offline fundraising: