RNLI shops, museums and the College will open as Government guidance allows. Lifeboat stations remain operational but are not open to visitors.

Stornoway's Station history


Horse launching poles fitted to new carriage.


Water service provided to lifeboat house.


Lifeboat equipped with radio-telephone (first in the RNLI fleet).


The Swedish Lifeboat Society awarded the Institution its Plaque of Merit and a Diploma in gratitude for the service on 28 January when the Stornoway lifeboat landed 20 men from the motor vessel Hervor Bratt of Gothenburg.


Bronze Medal awarded to Coxswain Malcolm MacDonald for the rescue of four men stranded on Sulisker Rocks on 18 and 19 September1952.  The coxswain ably handled the boat in confused and unknown waters.


The lifeboat James and Margaret Boyd was named by Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent, President of the Institution, on her first visit to the Hebrides.  A helicopter which landed at Stornoway to collect her baggage was the first ever seen in the Isle of Lewis.


Silver Medal awarded to Coxswain Malcolm MacDonald and Bronze Medals to Mechanic J MacLeod and Assistant Mechanic John MacDonald for the rescue of two people from the fishing vessel Maime which had engine failure and had drifted onto the rocks off Battery Point in a storm force wind, rough sea, rain and sleet on 30 January 1962.  A raft was floated down to the casualties but they made no effort to board, so the coxswain then veered down and using the raft he and John MacDonald boarded the casualty and dragged the survivors into the lifeboat.


Silver Medal awarded to Coxswain/Mechanic Malcolm MacDonald and The Thanks of the Institution inscribed on Vellum awarded to the crew in recognition of their courage, determination and seamanship when they rescued the crew of 29 of the fishing vessel Junella, which went aground off Eilean Trodday, Isle of Skye, in gale force winds, poor visibility and very heavy sea on 29 September 1980.


Solent class lifeboat withdrawn and replaced by an Arun class.


A celebration Centenary Vellum awarded to station.


Bronze Medal awarded to Coxswain/Mechanic Malcolm MacDonald for the rescue of the crew of two from the fishing vessel Westward which had anchored off Holm Island in a north-westerly Force 12 Hurricane, 15ft swell and heavy rain and was dragging seawards in need of assistance on 13 February 1989.  Coxswain Macdonald approached the casualty across the wind and finally succeeded in holding the lifeboat alongside the stricken boat long enough for the two crew members to be snatched to safety.


The Thanks of the Institution inscribed on Vellum was accorded to Coxswain/Mechanic Malcolm MacDonald in recognition of his leadership, seamanship and professionalism when the lifeboat Sir Max Aitken II rescued the crew of two and saved the yacht Emma which was in difficulties with engine failure 50 miles north east of Stornoway in darkness, 25 foot seas and severe gale conditions on 11 September1992.  This service lasted for twenty hours.

A collective Framed Letter of Apreciation signed by the Chairman, Michael Vernon was presented to Coxswain/Mechanic Malcolm MacDonald, Second Coxswain Donald MacLeod, Assistant Mechanic Robert Hughson, crew members John MacLennan, Murdo Campbell, John MacDonald and Angus MacIver for the service on the 11 January, when the lifeboat Sir Max Aitken II went to the assistance of the fishing vessel Alvor of Portugal, which was in difficulties rounding the Butt of Lewis in winds gusting to force 10, without navigational aids, damage to her bridge windows and steering defects.


The new station Severn class lifeboat ON1238 Tom Sanderson was placed on service on 3 February.  The lifeboat was funded by the legacy of Tom Sanderson together with other gifts and lagacies.


For services to the Institution, LMA Brian Michie has been honoured by Her Majesty the Queen in the recent Birthday Honours; Member, Order of the British Empire (MBE)

The station was established by the Institution in 1887, the lifeboat house and slipway was constructed at a cost of £1,000.  A cement concrete slipway 140 feet long had to be constructed to facilitate the launching of the lifeboat.