Monmouthshire County Council has worked in partnership with the local fire and rescue service and town council to provide lifesaving equipment on the bank of the River Wye in Chepstow.  A lifesaving ring and rope have been installed outside The Riverside Wine Bar thanks to funding supplied by South Wales Fire and rescue staff.  The location of the apparatus is owned by the town council and the wine bar and maintained by the county council.  The county council’s grounds maintenance team installed the equipment.

 Recent figures indicate that many people who drown never intended to be in the water.  Participating in land-based activities is a leading precursor to accidental drowning and of the 381 people who unnecessarily lost their life in the UK in 2013 126 were runners or walkers.

 The Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) runs campaigns running throughout the year to raise awareness of the dangers that water can pose and how to stay safe.  These campaigns include Don’t Drink and Drown, the Runners and Walkers Awareness Campaign and Drowning Prevention Week.

 Councillor Bob Greenland, Monmouthshire’s cabinet member with responsibility for leisure said: “It is vitally important that we warn people about the risks presented by water and our leisure service is pleased to back the Royal Life Saving Society and its campaigns as well as work with other partners to cut accidents and fatalities.”

 Landlord of the Riverside Wine Bar Curtis Price was keen to become involved.  His premises are situated on the banks of the Wye and metres from the Wales Coastal Walk.  He said: “The RLSS campaigns raising awareness of the dangers surrounding water are great schemes and it’s fantastic that the local leisure centre and fire service back such initiatives.  Large amounts of people use the river bank during the summer months and it’s important that both children and adults should learn about the importance of staying safe near water.”

For more information on RLSS campaigns see http://www.rlss.org.uk