Stranded pair who were airlifted to safety join fight to save Coastguard rescue helicopter

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A couple rescued after being cut off by the tide today (Sunday) made a special trip to thank Lyme Regis lifeboat crew for helping to save their lives.

Mark Cummins, 47, and his wife Debbi, 44, were airlifted to safety within 30 minutes of the sea reaching them on the beach, east of Charmouth, a week ago, on February 10.

During their visit to the RNLI headquarters at Lyme they shook hands with the crew members who helped in their rescue - and revealed that they have joined the fight to save the coastguard helicopter based at Portland.

Mark, an accountant from Dorchester, and his wife, told the lifeboat crew: “The most comforting thing was to see the lifeboat and to hear the crew shouting to us to stay calm and telling us the helicopter was on the way.”

The lifeboat was unable to reach shore because of the swell, but stayed on scene until the rescue was completed.

Debbi said: “Between them, the helicopter and the lifeboat saved our lives and we are now campaigning to save the helicopter service being scrapped by the government.

“We have contacted everyone we know to tell them how lucky we were and how quickly the helicopter arrived.

“We are normally very careful when we go for a coastal walk, but on this occasion perhaps we were a little unlucky and a little misguided.”

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