Branksome Chine Surf Life Saving Club

The club was formed in 1990 to patrol the beach between the Bournemouth and Poole boundary and Flaghead Chine in Poole. We provide voluntary first aid and rescue cover as well as beach and water safety advice, re-uniting lost children/people with their families/ groups and information for tourists. We work as a backup service to the RNLI Beach Rescue full- time lifeguards during weekends and bank holidays each summer.

Our training provides fun, first aid and water safety skills for people aged 8-12 (the nippers), 12-16 (juniors) and 16 upwards (seniors) who not only patrol the beaches, but also compete with other clubs around the country. There are masters competitions for the over 35’s too.

Patrols are performed on foot with qualified first aiders and lifeguards equipped with rescue cans (the big red floats seen on Baywatch) walking the beach and promenade.

On the water, we use specially designed craft of two types; malibu boards, large surfboards designed to carry two people; and rescue skis, a cross between canoes and surfboards using kayak paddles. Most of our rescues have been carried out using these craft.

We are a registered charity entirely funded by donations, which in 1999 helped us replace our ageing first aid kits and upgrade to VHF marine band radio communication. In 2000 we were able to buy two new rescue boards especially for our nipper training, some resuscitation training mannequins and a new racing surf ski as modelled here by the lovely Danny(!)

2001 saw the purchase of another two new nipper boards as well as the club teaming up with the RNLI in the Beach Rescue Project trial, which is hopefully to be repeated all over the country in the future to form a national lifeguard service.

Looking to the future, as the club grows we hope to be able to expand our service by running a rescue boat alongside our other patrols. We are seeking sponsors for this project (they cost around £5,000) please email me if you’re interested.