This was my third visit to The Sidmouth Independent Lifeboat, my previous visit being exactly one year before.
I was hopefully going to exceed last year’s record of £480, but this was going to be a challenge as generally, people are not carrying small change on them since the Covid-19 pandemic.
Sidmouth Independent Lifeboat foreseeing this, had ordered a contact-less payment card reader, but unfortunately, this hadn’t arrived in time for my visit.
I’d been hoping ahead of the event that the August bank holiday weekend weather would be mild, as it gets quite hot out in a dry-suit all day!
The forecast had been about 21 degrees with scattered sunshine, which was perfect; good enough to bring people out, but not too hot to be unbearable in the latex make-up and the dry-suit.
As I’d be wearing the same dry-suit as last time so I gave it a good wash beforehand.
On the day, I arrived at 9:00 and started getting getting changed. The living mannequin latex make-up takes about an hour to put on. The make-up consists of a white latex bald wig with white liquid latex on my face, so fairly simple, but takes quite a few layers to get a good covering and solid colour.
After I was fully made-up I went down the esplanade where I took my place on the trolley.
I had noticed that the mannequins where fixed to the trolleys with cable ties, so I'd brought a few with me as I wanted to look as much like the real mannequins as possible.
The trolley was new, and I'd noticed that it tipped the Sid mannequin forward a bit, so we fixed that by putting some wood behind the wheels to lean the trolley back.
On the second day, they videoed me being wheeled out to the esplanade on the trolley. There was a piece of metal right in my back, so it was a bit painful, but the results look great; I'll be posting that video shortly.
Over the three days I got some amazing reactions, some times it was fun to wink or move slightly and then freeze, and see what the reactions were. One couple spent a couple of minutes taking a selfie with me and they thought I was a dummy throughout, hilarious!