One of the main buildings in the harbour of the small fishing village of St Abbs is the lifeboat station, originally opened in 1911. The station now operates an inshore B class Atlantic 75 lifeboat.
This station is classed as an Observe station. Observe stations also welcome visitors but many are in inaccessible places and best suited to maritime rescue rather than visits. However, they are situated in stunning locations so why not enjoy the local area, using the station as a starting point?
We continually review our lifesaving services around the coasts of the UK and Ireland to ensure the right lifeboats are stationed at the right locations to meet local needs and changing patterns of sea use.As a result of an extensive review in the north east of England and Scottish Borders, St Abbs Lifeboat Station will close and an inshore lifeboat will be added to our all-weather lifeboat station just 2 miles away at Eyemouth in Scotland.RNLI Operations Director George Rawlinson explains:'The RNLI does not take lightly any decision to close a lifeboat station – such changes are only made after extensive operational research and painstaking consideration. 'But we understand that this will be disappointing for our crew, supporters and the community at St Abbs. The lifeboat station has served the RNLI proudly for over a hundred years, saved 226 lives and rescued many more in that time. 'On behalf of everyone at the RNLI I would like to thank the volunteers for their dedication and commitment to saving lives at sea.'Read more about these changes in our press release.
On Saturday 30 May at around 6.45pm members of the public raised the alarm, saying they had seen what they thought was a dive party experiencing difficulties, about 100 meters offshore at the back of St Abbs Harbour.
Eyemouth lifeboat was called out around 2pm on Wednesday 11 February 2015 and joined other rescue agencies in order to search for a person who had been reported as missing.
Eyemouth RNLI lifeboat was launched on service at 11:30am on Sunday 24 August 2014 after it was reported that a diver had not surfaced with the rest of the dive party and was reported missing.
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St Abbs Lifeboat StationMiddle PierSt AbbsEyemouthTD14 5QF
Station opening times:
By appointment only
Visitor contact telephone:
Specific crew member details for this lifeboat station are not available here at the moment.
More than 4,800 lifeboat crew members around the UK and RoI drop everything when their pagers go off, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Only 1 in 10 crew members has a professional maritime occupation. Men and women of all ages and all walks of life crew the RNLI lifeboats around our coasts and waterways.
Lifeboat name: Dorothy and Katherine Barr II
Lifeboat class: B class (Atlantic)
Funded by: The Barr Trust
Read more about the B class (Atlantic)
1830A Silver Medal was awarded to Coastguard Lieut Charles Shaw for rescuing four men from the sloop Peggy that went ashore on 28 August.
1832A Silver Medal was awarded to Coastguard Mentor Annis for rescuing two men, two women and two children from the smack Forfarshire that was driven ashore in a storm on 5 October.
1835Two Silver Medals were awarded to Coastguard Mentor Annis for rescuing two men from the schooner Bell that was wrecked in severe weather near Redheugh on 19 January.
1907On 17 October, during a storm and in dense fog, the cargo vessel Alfred Erlandsen struck the Ebb Carr rocks. Lifeboats from Eyemouth and Dunbar attempted to rescue the 17 sailors on board but they all died. A local appeal was set up by Miss Jane Hay who had witnessed the loss of the entire crew and she repeatedly impressed upon the authorities the urgent need for a lifeboat at St Abbs.
1911The RNLI established a lifeboat station; a slipway was built in the harbour and the lifeboat was kept in the open at the top of it. In recognition of her efforts Miss Jane Hay became the honorary secretary of the new station.
1915A boathouse was built at the top of the slipway and this boathouse is still in use today.
1964The boathouse was adapted for an Oakley class lifeboat.
1973Coxswain James Wilson was awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM).
1974The all-weather lifeboat was withdrawn from service following the placing of a new 44ft Waveney class lifeboat at the neighbouring station of Eyemouth. An inshore lifeboat (ILB) station was established with a D class lifeboat.
1977Framed Letters of Thanks were presented to Helmsman Alistair Crow and Crew Member James Wilson for the skill, determination and fine seamanship displayed by them when they rescued the three crew from the yacht Glorfindel II, which was in danger of being swamped in St. Abbs outer harbour in a storm, heavy swell and rough seas on 9 September 1976.
1979The D class lifeboat was replaced by a C class lifeboat.
1981The boathouse was adapted to house the inshore lifeboat.
1985The station was adapted to operate a B class lifeboat and a launching cradle was installed to lower the lifeboat down the slipway.
1986The C class lifeboat was withdrawn on 20 April and replaced with a B class Atlantic 21 lifeboat.
1998Improved crew facilities were provided in the boathouse.
2002The slipway was refurbished and a new winch was installed in March.
The Atlantic 75, B-783 Dorothy and Katherine Barr II, was placed on service.
At St Abbs Lifeboat Station the following awards have been made:
Framed Letter of Thanks 2
Silver Medal 4
Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Registered charity number 20003326 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 and copyright © RNLI 2015.