Record breaking sum raised for Ballycotton RNLI at gala dinner

Record breaking sum raised for Ballycotton RNLI at gala dinner
Organising committee (back row, from left): Bree Allen, Becky Eagle, Áine Flynn, Adrianna Hegarty and Margie Houlihan; front, l to r. Fiona Clark and Helen Cuddigan at the Downton Abbey themed annual Ballycotton RNLI Gala Fundraising Dinner which took place at Ballymaloe House. Pic: Brian Lougheed

FRIDAY saw a record-breaking €20,000 raised for Ballycotton RNLI at a Downton Abbey themed gala at Ballymaloe House.

The entire proceeds will go to the charity organisation dedicated to saving lives at sea. 

Mary Creedon, RNLI Community Manager for Munster expressed her gratitude towards everyone who supported the gala dinner.

"On behalf of the RNLI, I would like to express my sincere thanks to everyone who attended this fantastic long-standing fundraiser in Ballymaloe House," she said.  

"None of the rescues undertaken by Ballycotton RNLI would have been possible without the contribution of the funds given by the public and community of Ballycotton through fundraisers like this.

"Thanks to the Gala committee, sponsors, the Allen Family and staff at Ballymaloe House, and Gala guests for their generous support, we will be able to continue saving lives at sea in 2020." . 

The Allen family has hosted a Ballycotton RNLI fundraising event since opening Ballymaloe House to the public in 1964. 

The event is particularly special to the family as Myrtle and Ivan Allen met at a Ballymaloe House lifeboat dinner hosted by the previous house owners.

Last year Ballycotton Lifeboat went to sea over 60 times; there were 12 shout-out rescues which assisted eight people in distress. 

The Ballycotton Lifeboat crew is made up of 22 volunteers and on average each of the crew spent over 40 hours at sea between training and rescues. 

Rescues in 2019 involved many different situations and different types of vessels and activities including fishing vessels, sailing vessels, jet skis, kayakers, and swimmers. 

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