Summer 2010/11 marks a century-long legacy of heroic service on New Zealand beaches. New Zealand Post is celebrating the vital role that Surf Life Saving plays with the release of the ‘100 years of Surf Life Saving’ stamp issue. The issue depicts the heroic volunteers in action - patrolling beaches and rescuing swimmers in heavy surf on beaches up and down the country.
Surf Life Saving has grown immensely since its early days in 1910, when a group of New Brighton community leaders decided by the light of an oil lantern to create a Surf Life Saving Club. Those early lifesavers patrolled through summer afternoons in woollen togs and carried out strict training regimes through winter in local pools and gyms.
Over the past 100 years Surf Life Saving has grown dramatically, and local volunteer brigades have transformed into highly disciplined units, ready for any situation. There are now 73 Surf Life Saving Clubs in New Zealand with nearly 15000 members protecting and saving lives.