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Surf Action News


14th September 2017

Evaluation Report
Surf Action Family Relationships and Community Integration Project 2017

An evaluation of Surf Action’s Family Relationships and Community Integration Project 2017 funded by the Royal British Legion

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16th August 2017

Below is a copy of an excellent article written about Surf Action on behalf of the Royal British Legion by Tristan Nichols (Public Relations Officer South) on 14th August 2017. The original article can be found here .

How military families are bonding through surfing

If there’s a more fun way to learn about sea safety than going surfing, we’ve yet to hear it. So, when Surf Action came to The Royal British Legion asking for support in running water-activity courses for military families, we were only too happy to help.

14 August 2017
A grant from the Legion has enabled Surf Action to run a series of courses at the beautiful Praa Sands in Cornwall. The courses helped children and their parents learn about sea confidence and swimming in the sea through surfing, paddle-board, and kayaking activities.

Over 70 children and over 100 parents took part in the courses, including Chris, Laura and their daughter Amelia.

Chris and Laura with Amelia on Praa Sands.

“I think it’s amazing that the Legion is funding this sort of project,” says Chris. “You’d never expect that the Legion supports surf lessons and safety in the water sessions.”

“Given Amelia’s autism, sometimes it can be a real mission to motivate her to take part in activities. When we do go to the beach as a family we do find ourselves worrying about Amelia especially as she does her own thing without any real regard to her safety.”

“Amelia has sensory needs. In the past, we have taken her to the beach and she has had no concerns about running off into the water. She never considered rip tides, or being out of her depth, and of course that was worrying for us.”

Amelia taking part in the Surf Action courses with other military children.

“The wonderful thing about these sessions,” says Laura, “is that she and the other kids are meeting people; they’re learning about discipline; and safety in and out of the water."

“She understands the dangers and now, as a family, we feel much safer bringing her to the beach. Amelia cannot wait to get involved in the Surf Action courses. She absolutely loves it and that’s lovely to see.”

The courses by Surf Action introduce children to sea safety through surfing, paddle-boarding and kayaking.

Military parents and children are taken through sea safety.

“Surf Action is bringing families together to help children and their parents best deal with the heavy emotional cycle of deployment," says Steve Baynes, Head of Social Policy & Grant Giving at The Royal British Legion.

“The surfing sessions help to build self-confidence, encourage teamwork and awareness amongst children and parents who take part in the activities. This assists with a variety of challenges that can arise from having a parent in the Armed Forces.”

“This grant highlights the breadth of activities that assist the Armed Forces community and The Legion is proud to continue our financial support of Surf Action’s excellent and unique work.”

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17th July 2017

Surf Action statement from CDM

Surf Action would like to thank ‘Forces Reunited’ for their kind donation of £4600 to cover the cost of putting 10 armed forces veterans who are in need of improved physical and psychological wellbeing, through our, 8 week, ‘Ocean Therapy’ course. The support of organisations such as ‘Forces Reunited’ is invaluable to us in being able to best support veterans who have been, adversely affected by their service.

In their statement, ‘Forces Reunited’ said:

‘Forces Reunited is delighted to be supporting Surf Action with this donation. CEO Dominic Hayhoe, an ex-serviceman himself, says “I understand the need for the help that this charity provides to those suffering from trauma or injury, and when trying to return to civilian life. I started Forces Reunited just over 16 years ago, to help forces pals find each other, it’s been an exciting journey for us, and we’ve supported many very worthy charities along the way. We’re extremely proud to be able to make this donation to Surf Action, and look forward to following the progress of the 10 veterans as they undertake their Ocean Therapy Course.”

Forces Reunited is the largest online community of British Armed Forces servicemen and ex-servicemen, now with over 1 million members. Pals can reunite and stay in touch via the lively Forum, share photos in the Gallery area, keep up to date with the latest Forces News and enjoy Featured Articles from our ambassadors such as Major General David Shaw. All of this is free, including an assisted search for those struggling to find people they served with, and for just £8.95 a year, full members can then safely private message each other.

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Surf Action Health and Wellbeing Residential

Coombe, Morwenstow, North Cornwall, 13th-17th March 2017

The Landmark Trust has very kindly donated the use of two wonderful and historic 17th century thatched cottages in North Cornwall to Surf Action for use as the base for a health and wellbeing residential.

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Surf Action in association with the Royal British Legion are offering:

Service Children Activity Courses commencing in spring 2017.
8 Week Surfing Courses at Praa Sands on a Saturday or Sunday from 10am—1pm.
All boards and wetsuits supplied.

Course 1: Sat 1st April—Sat 20th May
Course 2: Sun 2nd April—Sun 2ist May
Course 3: Sat 27th May—Sat 15th July
Course 4: Sun 28th May—Sun 16th July

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Surf Action - Serving/Veterans Partner’s Project

Meeting at Lakeside Café, Coronation Lake, Helston each Wednesday morning from 10 until 12 from the 3rd May-21st June 2017

If you are the partner to either a serving armed forces member or a veteran then
this is for you!

The project is designed to provide a weekly opportunity for you to have an all too
rare couple of hours away from the family and the time to concentrate on yourself
and your own wellbeing within a supportive group of fellow partners.

Each Wednesday for 8 weeks the group will meet at the Lakeside Cafe at Coronation Lake in Helston where there will be the opportunity for a quick drink and catch-up before going on to participate in a group activity in the beautiful local area.

By participating in regular healthy physical activity in the natural environment, learning a few new skills along with the social engagement and interaction should be a welcome boost to your own resilience and wellbeing.

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23rd December 2016

Surf Action veterans back in service.

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3rd October 2016

Surf Action is delighted to announce that in conjunction with the Navy Boardriders and Paul Stainsby that we can offer three funded places on a NVBLQ Lifeguard course, this is open to all veterans and serving personnel. The course will run over the weekends of the 15/16th,22/23rd, and an assessment on the 29th of October, so a strong commitment will be needed. (Good fitness and swimming also needed). The course will be run at RNAS Culdrose by Paul. If you are interested please contact Surf Action asap on for an application form.

23rd August 2016

Surf Action has just completed its latest project which was part funded by the West Cornwall Youth Trust and has published its comprehensive report today on this site under the heading of 'Evidential Reports'.

18th August 2016

Surf Action has been a member of Cobseo since 2012
(Confederation of Service Charities)

Read an article about us on their website

3rd March 2016

Surf Action is delighted to have been awarded some funding by the West Cornwall Youth Trust to run its ‘Surf Action Sharks’ project for service and civilian youngsters during 2016.

The project will explore and evidence the benefits of early intervention to support the mental health and well-being of children in families of former and military personnel and in doing so reduce the increasing demands for services the Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS). We will do this through a programme of vigorous activities that integrate children from forces and non-forces families through surfing and beach related activities. Recently published academic research based on our delivery has evidenced the link between surfing/beach activities and increased mental health and wellbeing We want to explore the benefits of this approach for military children and will also be able to measure the benefits for children in non-forces families and the differences between the two groups.

We will be running a series of back to back 8-week Ocean Therapy courses at Newquay (RAF St Mawgan children) and Praa Sands (RNAS Culdrose children) with 10 children/course.

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2015 news item


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Surf Action is delighted to announce the start of a new, free, six week water-sports course for veterans at Tregonhawke Beach, Military Road, Whitsand Bay, Cornwall, PL10 1JZ commencing on Saturday 15th August 2015. The course will run for 6 consecutive Saturdays (22nd and 29th August 2015, 5th, 12th and 9th September 2015) commencing at 11.30 and ending at 14.30. The course is open to 10 veterans, so early booking is essential. This will be done on a referral basis either by self-referral or a referral by another organisation. The self-referral forms can be downloaded from this website in the ‘Downloads’ page, or you can contact Surf Action on 01209 210350 or by email to We have changed the day from Wednesday to Saturday in response to the many veterans who told us they are unable to attend during the week.

2015 news item

Armed Forces Project 2015

A unique opportunity for Armed Forces Community members

The Theatre Royal Plymouth, Bravo 22 and The Royal British Legion are creating a new play based on the experiences of the Armed Forces community in Plymouth.

How to get involved:
If you are over 18 and interested in being involved please email: or call 01752 230379. We will always get back to you.

General info about the project can be found at:

2015 news item

Disabled Serving Personnel and Veterans Gig Project -

Build a Cornish pilot gig and row her to the Isles of Scilly to take part in the World Championships

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Grant Clarey

A lifeguard, surfer and volunteer with Surf Action.

Dozens of surfers have paid tribute in a Hawaiian style to Grant, who died after battling with depression.

Full story:
Hawaiian paddle-out for Cornish surfer

He will be missed.

BBC News - 31st March 2015

Veterans' mental health: Referrals rise by 26%