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Ramsgate RNLI says 'we need your help' as lifeboat crew appeal for new recruits

Lifeboats News Release

Following some retirements and resignations due to relocation Ramsgate RNLI lifeboat station, situated in the town’s Outer Harbour, is currently seeking new volunteers to join its crew.

The lifeboat station is appealing to men and women who are aged between 17* and 60 years of age, physically fit and live and/or work nearby to consider becoming a volunteer lifeboat crew member and potentially save lives for years to come.

Volunteer crew members make a huge commitment to train and be available to go on rescues, but the reward is becoming part of a hugely reputable organisation, and a whole new social group.

Indeed, the RNLI charity has relied on volunteers to crew its lifeboats since 1824,and today has some 4,700 volunteer crew members.

The reason prospective crew members need to live and/or work near the town is because a crew member must normally be able to reach the lifeboat station within 10 minutes of an alert via the crew pager.

Ramsgate RNLI Coxswain, Ian Cannon, said: ‘Sometimes people read that the RNLI is on the lookout for more crew members, but they immediately discount the idea because they don’t feel they have any or enough relevant maritime experience.

‘What they don’t realise is that nowadays only one in ten lifeboat crew members has a maritime background. For instance, on the Ramsgate crew we currently have people carrying out a variety of jobs including an electrician, gas engineer, publican and estate agent – it makes for a real community feel but also means anyone with the right attitude can get involved.

‘Being a volunteer lifeboat crew member can be hugely rewarding as you get to help a lifesaving cause. The crew training provided by the RNLI charity is second to none and all you really need is to be keen, enthusiastic and willing to commit to the cause.’

Anyone interested in finding out more about the opportunity to be a lifeboat crew member should email their details for the attention of Ian at 


* 17 year-olds who wish to become an RNLI lifeboat crew member need parental permission and will need to provide evidence of this to the RNLI.

RNLI media contacts

• Tim Ash, RNLI Public Relations Manager (London/East/South East) on 0207 6207426, 07785 296252
• James Oxley, RNLI Press Officer (London/East/South East)
0207 6207425 / 07786 668825
• John Ray, Volunteer RNLI Press Officer, Ramsgate on 07759 480825
• For enquiries outside normal business hours, contact the RNLI duty press officer on 01202 3367

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 Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen, Carrybridge and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 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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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 or by email.


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