DONATIONS to the RNLI have apparently 'surged' following national criticism that the charity is funding a 'burkini' project while slashing jobs at the Poole HQ.

As reported, the organisation has recently responded to complaints that it is 'diverting donations to give burkinis to Muslim women in Africa' while making UK staff redundant.

The RNLI's spending on overseas aid is due to rise by more than 30 per cent this year, with money going towards an 'anti-drowning' project in Tanzania, which would provide Muslim women and girls with full-length burkini swimsuits. It also funds crèches in Bangladesh that is says 'will prevent children from swimming in the sea'.

The charity says supporters have not been 'misled' and just two per cent of donations are spent internationally.

This week, the RNLI said it had received a “vast” amount of responses to the weekend’s coverage and revealed it had seen a surge in online donations.