Sidmouth beach lifeguards set to return in 2023 after a successful second summer season

Jelly fish stings, fractures, broken hips, seizures, head injuries and missing children were tackled by beach lifeguards at Sidmouth this summer.

Sidmouth beach lifeguards are celebrating the end of a successful second season –delivering a 17-week, seven-day service to the town and its visitors.

The group of lifesavers recently announced the service will return next year, with training and recruitment starting in spring 2023.


Sidmouth Beach Lifeguard Josh Miller takes to the water.
Photo: Kyle Baker.

Guy Russell, Sidmouth lifeguard supervisor, said: “The lifeguard team has trained every week, including training with the lifeboat, to ensure their joint working was practiced.

“This was very much put into real life when both parties worked alongside coastguard and police on a major incident.

“The team’s experience, knowledge and confidence has grown exponentially this season and they are fast becoming enriched in the beach culture in Sidmouth.”

He added: “The lifeguard team has provided a presence, reassurance and professionalism to the beach, and have been the first port of call for the general public and beach goers for advice, knowledge, first aid and emergency response.”

Mr Russell thanked all those who had supported the beach lifeguards during the summer season.

He said: “We would like to extend our most sincere gratitude to the general public, beach goers and locals for their support, help, enthusiasm and gratitude towards the service.

“To the RNLI for all their ongoing support and interest in the independent service, to the local coastguard rescue teams, police, paramedics and Sidmouth Surf Live Saving Club, all of whom have helped throughout the summer.

“It’s been an absolute pleasure and the teams do their jobs with pride and passion.”


Sidmouth Beach Lifeguards with crew from Sidmouth Independent Lifeboat. L-R Front Row: Guy Russell, Josh Tatlock, Josh Miller, Eve Cockayne, Kellen Hamilton, Josh Roberts, Herny Williams. Not present, but part of the lifeguard team: Amy Cozens and Oliver Rodger.
Photo: Kyle Baker.

A spokeswoman for the service said: “In addition to their duties on Sidmouth’s main beach, Sidmouth Beach Lifeguards could also be found during the season patrolling the seafront and town beaches, including endless advice and action on east beach and the dangers of cliff falls, as well as being independently tasked by Solent Coastguard to assist with responses to 999 calls in the area.”

She added: “The service is set continue and will be back next year with training and recruitment starting in the spring.”

The lifeguard service is an independent set-up, founded by Sidmouth Independent Lifeboat and funded completely by the charity.

This season, the lifeguard team worked closely with Sidmouth Independent Lifeboat, Solent Coastguard, the police and ambulance service, the Coastguard and the Royal Navy bomb disposal unit.

The beach lifeguard service was extended in 2022 to cover the May half term and weekends leading up to the summer holidays, offering seven-day-a-week cover over 17-weeks, ending at the start of September.

During this time, the lifeguards were first on scene for a host of medical and clinical events, logging more than 100 incidents – including weaver fish and jelly fish stings, fractures, broken hips, seizures, head injuries and missing children.

This year the lifeguards trained with South Western Ambulance Service’s Hazardous Area Response Team (HART).


L-R: Eve Cockayne, Josh Tatlock, Josh Miller, Henry Williams, Kellen Hamilton, Josh Roberts, Guy Russell. Not present, but part of the lifeguard team: Amy Cozens and Oliver Rodger.
Photo: Kyle Baker.

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