Rescued angler launches RNLI’s Welsh Mayday appeal

Lifeboats News Release

Yesterday, rescued angler Mike Dooley returned to Porthcawl lifeboat station to thank the volunteers who saved his life and officially launch the charity’s national fundraising week – Mayday.

41 year old Mike was fishing off the breakwater shortly before Christmas when a large wave suddenly swept him off his feet, pulling him into the sea.   Within 10 minutes of the incident happening, Mike was pulled from the icy waters by the RNLI volunteers and into the safety of the lifeboat.

Talking of the experience Mike said:

‘I was hypothermic and getting desperate so I started to scream for help and just after that I felt hands grabbing my coat and I thought ‘oh thank God the lifeboat is here

‘When I heard about the RNLI’s Mayday campaign I wanted to do what we could to help and raise awareness of the amazing job these volunteers do. I will be eternally thankful to them. They are heroes who put themselves in dangerous situations to help others. I owe my life to them and I can’t say anything more than that.

‘As a charity the RNLI needs every penny so, please give what you can this Mayday as you never know when you may need their help.’

All across the country, RNLI volunteers are putting their best foot forward, holding various fundraising events to help save lives at sea.

Dinas Powys Rotary Club will start the fundraising weekend this Saturday (30 April) by holding a Classic Car Show in aid of the RNLI. 

Mayday supporters have a range of activities to choose from on Sunday as Saundersfoot fundraisers hold a ‘Brew for the Crew’ event at the local Sailing Club; or further north families can join in the fun at Port of Call, New Quay with a range of activities in the Family Fun Day.

From Pembrokeshire to Barry - there’s no excuse to miss out on Monday 2 May.  RNLI fundraisers will be preparing a Mayday breakfast at Little Haven Hall – what better way to start the day!  With breakfast sorted, why not continue the day with the RNLI theme and join in the Family Fun Day with St Davids RNLI.  Family Fun Days will be held by St Davids RNLI in the City’s Cathedral Green as well as another event by Barry RNLI on Whitmore Bay.

But the fundraising won’t be stopping after the weekend.  Penarth RNLI volunteers invite supporters to join them in a sponsored fun walk from 9am Sunday 8 May – wellies are an optional extra. 

Down on the Gower, Horton and Port Eynon volunteers will finish the month with a bang by holding a Family Fun Day and tug-of-war competition on 30 May to complete the Mayday fun.

Visit to donate and to see the other ways you can support the campaign.

Notes to Editor
Attached are photos of Mike meeting Porthcawl RNLI lifeboat crew yesterday afternoon.  Credit: RNLI/Danielle Rush

Photos 1 and 2 show Mike Dooley with Porthcawl RNLI volunteers Simon Emms, Ross Purchase and Matthew Picton.
Photo 3 shows RNLI volunteer Simon Emms with Mike Dooley.

RNLI media contact
For more information please phone Eleri Roberts RNLI Press Officer on 01745 585162 / 07771 941390 or Chris Cousens RNLI Press Officer on 07748 265496.

Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.