Bond star backing lifeboat charity

He was pilloried for wearing a lifejacket when he arrived for his unveiling as the new James Bond - but Daniel Craig showed no hesitation in donning one again.

The Casino Royale star wore the vest on a private visit to crew members of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

The actor requested a private visit to meet volunteers at Ramsgate Lifeboat Station.

The RNLI said the 007 star took its Trent class all-weather lifeboat and 32 knot Atlantic 75 inshore lifeboat "through their paces".

Craig, 39, said: "The tireless, unassuming, and above all brave work that the RNLI volunteers undertake everyday makes me proud and honoured to be associated with them. Please help them do their job - support your local lifeboat."

Coxswain Ian Cannon said: "It was a bit of a surprise for the crew but we were thrilled to be able to show Daniel just what our RNLI lifeboat crews do.

Daniel Craig with members of the Ramsgate RNLI crew

"Everyone who crewed with Daniel was impressed by his knowledge and interest in the work of our charity.

"His handling of the inshore lifeboat was certainly impressive. He was good fun to have aboard, we'd have him back any time."

RNLI Chief Executive Andrew Freemantle said: "We are delighted that Daniel Craig has chosen to join us.

"His invaluable support will do much to raise our charity's profile. With the launch ... of the RNLI's SOS Day campaign, our annual national fundraising event, this simply could not have come at a better time as we strive to raise understanding of the commitment and selflessness of our volunteer lifeboat crews and lifeguards."