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Generous legacy from former Wren to fund Hoylake’s new RNLI lifeboat

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Image of Alison Levett

Alison Levett
Public Relations Manager

Start quoteOur very sincere thanks go to the late Miss Paulette Micklewood for her generosity, which has helped provide Hoylake lifeboat station with such a wonderful, state-of-the-art lifeboat in memory of her father, Edmund Hawthorn MicklewoodEnd quote

Lifeboats News Release

  • Date:
  • Author: Alison Levett

A substantial legacy from a former Women’s Royal Naval Service officer will provide the majority of the funding for Hoylake’s new RNLI Shannon class all-weather lifeboat.

The lifesaving charity has just announced that the legacy of Miss Paulette Micklewood, from Oxford, will help provide the state-of-the-art lifeboat for Hoylake RNLI early next year. The vessel will be named Edmund Hawthorn Micklewood in memory of Miss Micklewood’s father.

Her generous gift to the charity will be added to funds raised during an appeal which ended in 2009 to help provide both the new Hoylake lifeboat station and the £2 million lifeboat.

Miss Micklewood was born in Devon and had a great affinity with the sea, loving to sail and working at the coast or on Royal Navy ships in her role as a Wren, both in the UK and overseas. After her retirement, she moved to Oxford to care for her mother, who suffered from Alzheimer’s disease, and also studied for a degree in psychology. She wrote a book to help other carers and became very involved in the Alzheimer’s Society. Miss Micklewood died in 2006 at the age of 75.

John Curry, Hoylake RNLI lifeboat operations manager, said: ‘This new craft will be the latest in a fine line of all-weather lifeboats to be stationed at Hoylake, which is situated close to Liverpool, one of the United Kingdom's major ports. The speed and manoeuvrability of the new Shannon class lifeboat, coupled with the capability of the Supacat launch and recovery system, will reduce the time taken to reach casualties and will help Hoylake’s lifeboat crew reach 'that hand' before it sinks beneath the waves.

‘Our very sincere thanks go to the late Miss Paulette Micklewood for her generosity, which has helped provide Hoylake lifeboat station with such a wonderful, state-of-the-art lifeboat in memory of her father, Edmund Hawthorn Micklewood.’

The new Shannon class lifeboat will replace Hoylake’s current RNLI Mersey class lifeboat, Lady of Hilbre, when she comes to the end of her operational life in early 2015.

As the first modern RNLI all-weather lifeboat to be propelled by water jets instead of propellers, the Shannon is the most agile in the charity’s fleet. Capable of 25 knots, the Shannon is 50% faster than the lifeboats it replaces, ensuring that those in need are reached even more quickly than before.

Last week (21 February), Dungeness RNLI lifeboat station received the first Shannon class lifeboat to be stationed on the coast. Around six Shannons will be built each year and Hoylake will be among the first lifeboat stations to receive one.

Matt Crofts, RNLI Divisional Operations Manager, said: ‘The Shannon is an impressive lifeboat which will enable volunteer RNLI crews like those at Hoylake to reach casualties faster and more safely than ever before. It has been designed by in-house RNLI design engineers and we involved volunteer crew members in the trials to ensure we were producing a new class of lifeboat which would deliver the very best life-saving capability right around the coast.’

Guy Rose, RNLI Legacy Income Manager, added: ‘Legacies, no matter how small or large, make a huge difference to the vital work of the RNLI. Miss Micklewood’s amazing generosity will be remembered every time our Hoylake crew go to sea in their new lifeboat and her legacy will help save many lives off the Wirral coast for decades to come.’

Picture captions
1. Miss Micklewood in later life.
2. Miss Micklewood as a young woman.
3. New Shannon class lifeboat The Morrell arrives at Dungeness lifeboat station. Credit RNLI/Nathan Williams.

RNLI Media Contacts
For more information contact Alison Levett, RNLI Media Relations Manager, North, on 07786 668912 or at alison_levett@rnli.org.uk  

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Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland from 237 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 180 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

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The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland