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Amy RossDivisional Media Relations Manager
Lifeboats News Release
Her Majesty The Queen to visit Margate RNLI
Her Majesty The Queen, patron of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, accompanied by His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, is visiting Margate RNLI lifeboat station today – Friday 11 November.
The Queen will meet lifeboat station crew members and fundraising volunteers. Her trip coincides with a visit to The Turner Contemporary Gallery in Margate.
Margate RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager Paul Hodson said: ‘This is a really special day for the crew here at Margate and a great honour. The crew of the all-weather and inshore lifeboats, along with shore helpers, fundraisers and shop staff are all really looking forward to meeting The Queen.
‘Princess Margaret named our previous Rother class lifeboat in 1979, to celebrate the Queen’s Silver Jubilee and, next year, the UK will be celebrating the Diamond Jubilee. So it is a marvellous opportunity to meet Her Majesty and be a part of history.
‘Back in 1992 our current Mersey class lifeboat was named by Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra.’
The Queen, accompanied by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, will be greeted by RNLI personnel including the Chairman Admiral the Lord Boyce GCB OBE DL, Finance and IS Director Mark Hallam, Training Divisional Inspector Allen Head and the Margate Lifeboat Operations Manager Paul Hodson. Paul, in turn, will introduce The Queen to Margate crew members and fundraisers. She will then sign the official visitors’ book and be presented with a posy by Anais Gaspa, aged seven, daughter of crew member Peter Gaspa.
The station has a long and proud history, celebrating its 150th anniversary in 2010. In total six RNLI Medals for Gallantry have been awarded – five silver and one bronze over the years. There have also been some notable incidents. In 1897, the town’s lifeboat Friend To All Nations lost nine out of its 13 crew in heavy seas. In 1929, the German government awarded a certificate to each member of the crew for their assistance with a motor ship. In 1940, the Margate lifeboat The Lord Southborough was one of the 19 lifeboats that took part in the Dunkirk evacuation, rescuing some 600 men. Coxswain Parker was one of the two lifeboat coxswains who were awarded the Distinguished Service Medal for their services at Dunkirk.
This year, the station has launched 54 times and rescued 75 people, including a rescue of a family of six including children and a baby. They were rescued unharmed in September by Margate’s RNLI inshore lifeboat and local lifeguards after they were cut off by the tide at Botany Bay, Margate.
Notes to editors
1. Her Majesty The Queen is the patron of the RNLI – a role which she has held since 6 February 1952
2. Her Majesty visited their flank station at Ramsgate when she named a relief Mersey lifeboat in 1993 called “Her Majesty The Queen”. The attendees on the day comprised police officers representing the UK & EIRE that also served as RNLI lifeboat crew members and Joe Coyle a current Margate crew member, attended then as a representative of the police force, representing England. (A photograph from this visit is attached.)
Photographs of Her Majesty The Queen meeting Margate RNLI crew & fundraisers will be available after the event - please ring Amy Ross on 07786 668825.
RNLI media contacts
To arrange interviews/ more information please contact Amy Ross, Divisional Media Relations Manager for the East, on 07786 668825.
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 236 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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The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number CHY 2678 in the Republic of Ireland
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number CHY 2678 in the Republic of Ireland | RNLI (Trading) Ltd - 1073377, RNLI (Sales) Ltd - 2202240, RNLI (Enterprises) Ltd - 1784500 and RNLI College Ltd - 7705470 are all companies registered in England and Wales at West Quay Road, Poole BH15 1HZ. Images & copyright © RNLI 2014.