2021 Ready For Action: The Lifesaver and Lifeguard Fitness Challenge (1 Feb to 30 April) 

We have launched a three month individual run, bike or walk fitness challenge, designed to get people back to their physical and mental best. As part of the challenge, we are encouraging people to fundraise £1 for every mile, 100 per cent of which will be distributed to local groups. Click here for more information.

Drowning Prevention Week (19-26 June) 

We’re optimistic about Drowning Prevention Week 2021 and returning to the form of 2019, when 750,000 children were provided with practical water safety lessons. 2021 is a crucial year for initiatives that address a specific gap in school swimming and water safety education. During 2020, cohorts of young people have missed out on the opportunity to swim. In addition, typical participation in swimming and water safety for BAME communities is worryingly low. In 2021 DPW will focus on the impact and wake left by COVID-19, with a particular aim to increase participation among under-represented communities. These opportunities will provide Clubs and Branches with the environment to market their activities, increasing participation and membership.

A Roadmap for Sport

We are delighted to share the news that Alan Sutherland, newly-appointed Trustee will be taking over from Debbie Hunt (RLSS UK Deputy President) as lead for sport. We thank Debbie for her commitment to sport as she continues her DP duties.

Alan has been tasked to establish a national sports group, that will initially focus on getting sport back up and running, and will quickly turn its attention to increasing and supporting sport participation. It is our aspiration to get more Clubs (both affiliated clubs and other aquatic clubs) involved in lifesaving sport, at club level.

The situation is ever-changing and unpredictable, and there are some critical decisions to make in the early stages to support officials, coaches and athletes back doing the sport they love, in a safe environment.

As a reminder, we are planning these events in 2021:

  • Tele-Games (TBC)

    We are partnering up with Commonwealth partners to run an international, virtual competition. The dates depend on the likely return to training, this event will provide a safe way for athletes and clubs to return to competition.
  • National Championships and Speeds 

    Both of our scheduled competitions will be run in Leeds, over the weekend of 16-17 October 2021.

CPR Challenge (World Heart Day 29 September) 

Following the success of last year’s CPR Challenge, we have been approached by partners across the Commonwealth to replicate the event internationally. This year will see a global effort to raise the profile of RLSS.


We are very aware of the impact of the current situation, and the sustainability and viability of clubs and local groups. On top of the points mentioned in Relay (Safeguarding Training, sports events etc.) to address this issue, we will:

  • Issue financial support, especially for those that are facing hardship
  • Run national marketing when the time is right to increase traffic to Clubs (it is critical that we do this once space allows clubs to get back to full capacity)
  • Linking DPW to clubs and encouraging traffic to increase club membership