The Great Wight Wobble
On 10 May, five volunteer crew from Hamble Lifeboat set out to walk the Isle of Wight coastal path in 3 days to raise funds for the Lifeboat and the Southampton Veterans’ Drop In Centre. The group stopped at every RNLI and independent lifeboat station around the Island.
The weekend started with a 5am rendezvous at the Lifeboat Station and then on to the Red Jet to West Cowes. The group, consisting of coxswains Grenville Houser and Paul Ackland, and crew Ian McMichael, Marie Whitehouse and Rosie Geale started their walk, passing the Cowes Lifeboat Station at 6.15am. The crew arrived in Yarmouth for lunch and photos in front of the Yarmouth Lifeboat. The route then took them around Totland Bay, the Needles, over Tennison Down and on to Freshwater Independent Lifeboat Station to a welcome BBQ.
Starting day two in Freshwater then on to the infamous Blackgang Chine. From there it was all downhill to Niton and lunch at the Buddle Inn where they were met by one of the Lifeboat trustees. Onwards to hilly Ventnor. The group were met there by one of the Coastguard Rescue volunteers and his bride, who had been following them on facebook and live tracking. After an exchange of congratulations and a rousing three cheers for the newlyweds, the group continued into Sandown, ending the day at Sandown and Shanklin Independent Lifeboat.
Day three started up the Culver Down, out of Sandown and towards Bembridge, where they were met by the Press Officer of Bembridge Lifeboat and given a tour of their Tamar Class Lifeboat. Onwards to Ryde, and a visit to the Ryde Inshore Rescue station – another of the Islands’ independent lifeboats, before setting off for East Cowes.
In East Cowes the group were met by some fellow Hamble Lifeboat Crew, who had made the journey across to collect them. A final walk to Cowes lifeboat station to complete the journey, where the group were welcomed with much needed food and drinks to celebrate the end of a successful walk.
They have raised just over £4,000, which will be split equally between the two charities.