A man from Cornwall has shown his support for an RNLI campaign after the organisation saved his life.

Matt Windsor, a dad of three, recounted his near-death experience when his fishing trip took a terrifying turn.

He had planned to head out to sea on his kayak for the first time on an otherwise calm day in June.

Attempting to deploy his anchor in order to start fishing, Matt was hit side-on by a wave and got knocked off his kayak.

He found himself thrown from his kayak into freezing waters.

Mr Windsor recalls: "The water was so cold, it took my breath away and I knew instantly I was in trouble, it was like daggers all over my body."

Struggling in the icy depths for almost an hour, the Bude dad and his friend eventually righted the kayak but he couldn't get himself back on board.

As the cold started to seep into his bones and his strength dwindled, Mr Windsor managed to hit the Mayday button on his radio.

He explained further: "I thought I was going to die, I could feel it all slipping away.

"I felt so heavy, like I was sinking."

His friend managed to connect their two kayaks and make it to a nearby cove but Mr Windsor's situation was precarious as he was on the brink of hypothermia.

He continued: "I was very close to losing my life, and if it wasn’t for that Mayday call and the RNLI, things could have been very different."

Arriving just in time, the volunteers from Ilfracombe RNLI and a coastguard helicopter managed to save his life that day, another one in the total of 72 lives saved in the South West alone in 2023.

This year, the RNLI has launched a campaign Mayday Mile which encourages the public to cover a mile-a-day in May to fundraise for the lifesaving service.

The money raised through this initiative will aid in the extensive training of the RNLI crew, the upkeep of the boats and equipment used in rescues such as this.

Falmouth Packet:

Adrian Carey, head of region for the South West at the RNLI said: "It’s so easy to get involved, and to have fun whilst helping the RNLI save lives."

The services of the RNLI are more crucial than ever with over 1,500 RNLI lifeboat launches on record throughout the UK and Ireland in 2023, marking an increase from the previous year.

If you are interested in taking on the Mayday Mile or want to donate to the organisation, visit RNLI.org/supportMayday for more information.