Saving life in Allsopp genes

Marcoola SLSC's Trevor and Jude Allsopp, together with daughter Mitch and son Ben, prepare for a new season on the beaches.
Marcoola SLSC's Trevor and Jude Allsopp, together with daughter Mitch and son Ben, prepare for a new season on the beaches. Che Chapman

The Allsopp family has made surf lifesaving a family affair for the past 15 years and this summer is no different.

Mum Judy, dad Trevor and their children, Ben, 21, and Mitch, 20, completed their first season patrol as a family last week, joining hundreds of Coast lifesavers who have signed on for another summer.

And Mrs Allsopp said it would not be their last.

“We have always been at Marcoola,” she said.

“Trevor and I actually met here and it's like a real extended family now.

“My kids have been there since under-eight nippers.”

Although Ben and Mitch took a break for a while, they rejoined their parents recently and are heavily involved in club life.

“Ben is patrol captain and club captain, and Mitch is the current summer surf girl state runner-up,” Mrs Allsopp said.

“It's been wonderful. We let them leave and do what they wanted for a little while but they've both come back voluntarily.”

A chief training officer, Mrs Allsopp said lifesaving together had been a bonding experience for the family.

“We often see parents come and do their bronze course at the same time their children are and it means they get to patrol with their child,” she said.

“Surf lifesaving has so much opportunity. Ben has just been accepted into Duntroon Military College in January, and he won the Sunshine Coast club-captain award.”

Mrs Allsopp said with the warmer weather and the bigger beach crowds, it was more important that people were aware of safety on the beach.

A near drowning last year for summer surf girl entrant Natalie Ward really drove home the importance of beach safety, Mrs Allsopp said.

“Natalie got into a bit of trouble about 200 metres outside of the flags,” she said.

“Now she's learned to patrol because she realises how important it is.”

Marcoola SLSC is seeking volunteers for regular beach patrols from now to May, and has a bronze medallion course starting on October 4.

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