Amble RNLI Lifeboat Station earmarked for charity’s most advanced lifeboat
Amble RNLI Lifeboat Station has been earmarked to receive the charity’s latest and most advanced class of lifeboat – the Shannon class – which is 50% faster than the lifeboat it will replace, ensuring that those in need are reached even faster.
The RNLI plans to replace Amble’s Mersey class lifeboat The Four Boys in 2017, which is reaching the end of its planned 25-year life span. The new lifeboat will cost £2M and the RNLI is currently working to identify whether the funding for the new lifeboat can be raised from legacy gifts or whether fundraising activity is needed. The RNLI will update on this once the funding strategy has been identified.
The Shannon is the first modern RNLI all-weather lifeboat to operate with water jets, not propellers. Capable of 25 knots, the Shannon is 50% faster than the classes it has been designed to replace, which have a lower maximum speed of 17 knots. The Shannon class will also improve safety for the charity’s volunteer crews, thanks to its shock absorbing seats and on-board computer system, which allows the crews to operate and monitor the lifeboat from the safety of their seats.
Michael Vlasto, RNLI Operations Director says: ‘I have had the privilege of being involved with the RNLI for over 38 years. In that time I have witnessed great advances in the charity’s lifeboats and seen many new vessels arrive on station. However, I have never seen our volunteer crews quite as excited as they are about the Shannon. This all-weather lifeboat is half as fast again as the lifeboats it has been designed to replace and using water jet propulsion, the manoeuvrability is exceptional. Most importantly though, the Shannon has been carefully developed with the safety of the volunteer crews at the very heart of the design, allowing them to shave life-saving moments off the time it takes to reach those in trouble at sea.’
Rodney Burge, Amble RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager, said: ‘Naturally we’ll be sad to say “goodbye” to our current Mersey class lifeboat The Four Boys, but as she’ll be nearing the end of her operational life, everyone at the station is delighted that we’ll be receiving a Shannon class lifeboat. Her arrival will be greeted with much enthusiasm by our volunteer crew and we’re sure her increased capabilities and manoeuvrability will enhance our ability to save lives at sea.’
The Shannon has been developed by the RNLI’s in-house team of naval architects, marine engineers and operators to replace the majority of Mersey and some remaining Tyne class lifeboats as they reach the end of their operational life (subject to the RNLI’s 5yr-rolling review of lifesaving assets).
Once the Shannon is rolled out across the UK and Ireland, this class of lifeboat will make up a third of the RNLI all-weather lifeboat fleet, at which point the RNLI will have reached its aim of a 25 knot allweather lifeboat fleet.
The majority of the 50+ Shannon class lifeboats to be stationed throughout the UK and Ireland will be built at the RNLI’s new All-weather Lifeboat Centre in Poole, which is currently under construction.
Bringing all-weather lifeboat production in-house will save the charity £3.7M annually – the equivalent of 2.5 Shannon class lifeboat.
175th Grace Darling Anniversary Event - 7 September 2013
The 175th anniversary of Grace Darling’s famous rescue was held on 7 September at Seahouses Harbour in Northumberland.
The William Riley, a historic lifeboat from Whitby, was rowed out from Seahouses to Longstone Lighthouse on 7 September as part of the event to celebrate the 175th anniversary of Grace Darling’s rescue of survivors from the wreck of the steamship SS Forfarshire in 1838.
There were also events and activites will taking place at Seahouses lifeboat station from 10am and included the ‘Great Grace Paint Off’ a family finger painting activity, and ‘Keep Up With Grace’, a rowing challenge without getting feet wet.
Grace was living at Longstone Lighthouse with her father William when the SS Forfarshire struck Big Harcar Rock in a storm. They saw survivors and decided to attempt a rescue thinking that the lifeboat crew would not be able to reach the rocks in the bad weather. But the Seahouses lifeboat crew were able to launch, and the historic row of the William Riley recreates the journey of the lifeboat crew from 1838
although in better weather. Grace and William Darling were awarded the RNLI’s Silver medal for their bravery.
Today RNLI crews still go out in all weathers. Through your donations our crews are provided with the best kit and most advanced boats but like Grace they still do everything they can to save lives at sea.
For further information please contact Virginia Mayes-Wright at the
RNLI Grace Darling Museum on 01668 214910
Amble Lifeboat Harbour Day - 25 August 2013
On Sunday 25th August Amble Lifeboat Station held it’s annual Lifeboat Day fundraiser. With the weather on our side the day was really well supported by both locals and visitors to the town. We tried to make this a real community event that all of the family could enjoy and with a steel band playing on the quay, displays by the Sea Cadets as well as the lifeboat exercises, one with the Sea King from RAF Boulmer. I hope that everyone who came along had an enjoyable time with us.
The day could not take place without the hard work and support of a variety of people and groups and I would like to take this opportunity to mention them here. Firstly the fundraising committee, fundraisers and supporters who work very hard and give freely of their time. The lifeboat and helicopter crews who put on wonderful displays for us. The Harbour Master, Harbour Commission and Coastguards for their support before and on the day. To every one of the locals shops, businesses and individuals for their donations be that financial or prizes.
A final and sincere thank you to everyone who came along on the day for their generous support which means that, with some money still to come in, we believe that the final total raised will be in the region of £9,500. This is a tremendous amount and every penny will be used in support of the RNLI’s primary aim of saving lives at sea.
A huge thank you to you all.
Amble lifeboats launched twice over two days as rescue calls increase to four this week - 27 July 2013
Shout number 1 – Wednesday 24 July
Amble all-weather lifeboat The Four Boys was launched at 15.30 hrs on Wednesday when a call came in that a 26ft boat had suffered mechanical failure.
The vessel was located just outside the south pier of Amble harbour and was drifting towards cliffs. The vessel managed to get an anchor rigged to slow down the drift. Amble inshore lifeboat Mildred Holcroft was the first to arrive on scene and quickly placed a volunteer crewmember on board to assess the situation. Once it was clear
that the three persons on board were all well, a tow line was rigged to The Four Boys and the larger lifeboat towed the casualty back to Amble Marina for investigation.
Wind: SE 3 Visibility: Good Sea state: Slight
Time of launch: 15.30hrs Time of return: 16.15hrs
Shout number 2 – Thursday 25 July
Both the All-weather lifeboat The Four Boys and the Inshore lifeboat Mildred Holcroft were launched today after a local fishing boat had taken a wave broadside whilst attending to fishing nets half a mile from the North pier of Amble harbour. This had forced the boat onto her nets and, as such, she had become bound up in them and was unable to manoeuvre. As a result of this, she was forced onto the beach where the lifeboat crew were able to free her drive gear from the nets. As there was no damage to the boat, the Skipper decided to wait for the returning tide when he could
re-float the vessel and return to harbour.
Wind: SE 2 Visibility: Poor Sea state: Slight
Time of launch: 09.00hrs Time of return: 09.45hrs
Children hear and learn about sea and beach safety - 11 July 2013
On Thursday 11 July 60 children together with teachers and helpers from Amble Edwin Street 1st school visited Amble lifeboat station. 30 attended the station in the morning followed by another 30 in the afternoon
At the Lifeboat Station the children were shown a presentation which emphasized beach and sea safety. They were also shown a video all about the RNLI and their equipment . After the presentations the children were taken around the lifeboat station and shown the lifeboats and allowed to try on the equipment worn by the lifeboat crew.
The group of children who attended the in the afternoon, presented the
lifeboat station with a cheque for £300. This was money raised by them at their harvest festival, when they celebrated the "Harvest of the Sea" with songs, dance, drama and prayers - this was followed by a cake sale and coffee morning (cakes donated by parents and staff).
The photo shows six children all of whom have a relation connected with the RNLI. Matthew, Kieran, John, Abby, Olivia, Lyla presenting the cheque to Rodney Burge the Amble Lifeboat Operations Manager.
Rodney Burge LOM at Amble says that it is considered very important especially for children who live by the sea for the RNLI volunteers to meet and stress to children at an early age the importance of how to be safe around water ie rivers as well the sea.
On Thursday 13th June at 15.21hrs Humber Coast guards received a distress call from the 10m (28ft) Fishing Boat “True Vine” with one person on board. The “True Vine” at that time was fishing 1 mile North East of Coquet Island. The “True Vine” reported to HM Coast Guard Humber that it was taking in water in the engine compartment.
The weather at the time was, Good visibility, wind force 3,with a slight sea running. HM Coast Guard called Amble Lifeboat Station and requested the launch of Lifeboats.
Both Amble Lifeboats were launched, The Inshore Lifeboat “The Mildred Holcroft” and the All weather relief Lifeboat “The Bingo Lifeline”
The inshore lifeboat arrived at the True Vine with in 5 minutes of launch, where it instructed the True Vine to proceed towards
the Amble all-weather Lifeboat which was following close behind, On meeting the “True Vine” the All-weather lifeboat was able to put four lifeboat crew members on board it together with a salvage pump. They then commenced to pump out water as the True Vine preceded with all haste to Amble Harbour..
The photographs show entering Amble Harbour. The “True Vine” with it’s bow down as it continued to take in water as it
progressed in to the harbour accompanied
by the lifeboats.
Once safely moored to a pontoon at the boat yard, the lifeboat crew continued to pump the water ingress from the True Vine till it was able to be lifted out of the water and into the boat yard..
Both lifeboats returned to station at 16.00hrs. The owner of the “True Vine” thanking HM Coast guard and Amble Lifeboat crew for responding to his call for assistance so quickly and for a job well done.
On the evening of the 19th April. The Amble Lifeboat Crew held a presentation at the Lifeboat Station.This was to mark the retirement of Doctor Alan Fraser from the volunteer role of Lifeboat Medical Adviser, a post he has held for the past 18years.
As Medical adviser he was responsible for the crews’ medicals and for providing first-aid and scenario training.During a rescue which requires a medical evacuation, he would also be present on the crew.
Doctor Fraser who has now retired from general practice took over this post from Doctor Paul Creighton, (now also retired). Doctor Fraser’s place has now been taken by Doctor Kathleen Long . Doctor Long is a general practitioner at The Coquet Health Centre Amble as were all the other volunteer doctors before her.
The photograph shows Mr Malcolm Pritchard (right) chairman of the Amble Lifeboat Management Team presenting the RNLI Certificate of Service and a painting by local artist Jimmy Thompson of The Four Boys, Amble’s all weather lifeboat to Doctor Alan Fraser during the course of the evening .
Mr Rodney Burge, Amble Lifeboat Operations Manager and ex Lifeboat coxswain, who has served with Doctor Alan Fraser said:
“During Doctor Fraser’s long association with Amble Lifeboat he had proved to have been of great assistance and although the post of Medical adviser does not appear as high profile (in relation to the crew of the lifeboat ) his service and that of all Medical advisers is invaluable to the Lifeboat crew and the RNLI".