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RIVER & SEA SENSE: A woman from Holywell has committed her life to water safety education after the death of her son


It has been 15 years since Christopher Turnbull tragically died at Capel Curig after getting into trouble in the water. We speak to his mum Debbie about her tireless commitment to water safety.

It feels like it's been hotter than ever this year, and with the soaring summer temperatures comes the temptation to get into the water, but as we know, this can have tragic consequences.
In the most recent heatwave, at least 30 people are known to have died trying to cool off.

Debbie Turnbull lost her son Chris after he got into trouble in the water. A strong swimmer and keen rugby player, he had been hanging out with his friends at Capel Curig all summer.

On jumping into the water, Chris experienced cold water shock. He was then carried into a cave where he got his trainer stuck in a tree root.
Since the tragedy, Debbie has made it her mission to educate as many people as possible, especially youngsters, on how to stay safe around the water, and what to do if you find yourself in trouble.
The key messages she hopes to get across are the importance of staying afloat if you start to panic, the dangers of tombstoning, and the risks of using inflatables in open water.
On the fifteenth anniversary of her sons death, Debbie has launched a new mission as part of her campaign, to touch a million hearts with her message.
To find out more details about Debbie's story and what she's working on right now, visit
RASS has received recognition from Emergency Services across the UK and beyond.

Awards such as Free To Network Resilience In Business – Finalist Pride of Britain –  Special Achievement Award National Lottery Awards – presented By Bear Grylls – WCVA Award – Liverpool Lifestyle Award – Special Achievement

Debbie says “The project is needed as there is not enough Water Safety and Lifesaving Education. Young people take risks, drink alcohol, and put their lives and others in danger.

“There are a number of ‘Hot Spots’ in the local area and across North Wales where young people visit on a regular basis to have fun and which often are having to be chased away or rescued by our emergency services.”

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