RNLI lifeguards will be back on 18 of Cornwall’s busiest beaches from Saturday, providing beach safety patrols over the bank holiday weekend and throughout the summer season.

Some of the charity’s lifeguards have already been in action this year with a number of incidents over the Easter school holidays when they patrolled eight Cornish beaches.

These including; a major first aid incident at Sennen, the rescue of a canoeist at Godrevy and assistance of a surfer hit on the head by a surf board on Perranporth.

On Saturday, RNLI lifeguards will begin their full time summer season safety patrols on the following beaches; Sharrow, Praa Sands, Gwithian, Hayle Towans, Porthmeor, Sennen, Porthtowan, Perranporth, Fistral, Towan, Watergate Bay, Treyarnon, Constantine, Harlyn, Polzeath, Widemouth and Summerleaze.

RNLI lifeguards will also be on Tregantle beach in south east Cornwall at weekends (subject to military firing) and over the two May bank holidays until the start of the peak summer season on 6 July.

From 18 May, a further 28 beaches will have lifeguard patrols and from 6 July a total of 57 beaches across Cornwall will boast RNLI lifeguard cover.

Steve Instance, RNLI senior lifeguard manager said: "The summer season is now upon us, although we are yet to be graced with the weather befitting such an occasion, beachgoers are expected to make the most of the bank holiday weekend and for the lifeguards to be busy.

Between May and November last year, there were nearly 3.4 million visitors to Cornwall’s RNLI lifeguarded beaches and the charity’s lifeguards dealt with 6,137 incidents, assisted 6,888 people and saved 24 lives. 

While the lifeguards are fully trained and equipped to respond immediately should anyone get into difficulty, the RNLI lifeguards priority is to prevent incidents in the first place.

They encourage people to go to a lifeguarded beach, where the lifeguards can provide appropriate safety advice and encourage people to swim between the red and yellow flags. Checking tide times and local weather forecasts are essential.