Woman, 85, says 'it's a miracle' after brush with death on Welsh coast

Helicopter being used in rescue
The rescue required a helicopter -Credit:Channel 5

An 85-year-old woman has described the moment she was rescued on the Welsh coast with seconds to spare as a "miracle". Julie Wilkins was rescued after becoming stranded and left clinging to rocks on the coast at Llanaber, North Wales.

Her rescue was featured in Channel 5's Coastguard: Search & Rescue SOS, which aired on Sunday evening. Heading out to visit her parents' grave, Julia decided to walk along the beach.

However the tide quickly came in and she found herself clinging to the sea defence rocks. In a distressed call to the coastguard, she said: "I'm stuck near the sea! The sea is coming in, fast!

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"The tide is coming in, it is on my ankles now and I can't climb the rocks. The tide is coming and it's coming higher and higher. It is serious! The waves are hitting me! I'm on the rocks."

Two being be winched up above the sea
Julia was winched to safety -Credit:Channel 5

As the waves continued to hit Julia her phone cut out and despite ringing back multiple times the coastguard were unable to get an answer. As part of the rescue efforts, the coastguard helicopter was sent out and spent 20 minutes looking for Julia before they spotted her. Want less ads? Download WalesOnline’s Premium app on Apple or Android.

They then winched her to safety and straight to hospital as Julia was suffering badly from hypothermia. Talking about the rescue, Julia said she was lucky to still be alive. For the latest TV & Showbiz news, sign up to our newsletter.

She said: "The tide just kept coming, it came to my waist and it came to my throat and then it came over my head. The second time it came over my head it lifted me off my feet and I knew then that the next one, I would be taken away.

"I started praying that I didn't want to drown and before it came in those marvellous helicopter men arrived and took me up, I couldn't believe it, a miracle... it was a matter of seconds! Literally seconds, I still can't comprehend why they would go to all that trouble to save an old woman like me."