St Agnes RNLI officially welcomes new D class lifeboat
Volunteers at St Agnes RNLI Lifeboat Station held a formal naming ceremony and service of dedication for their new D class lifeboat XKalibur on Saturday 30 April.
Hundreds of people gathered on the beach in the sunshine as the new inshore lifeboat, funded by the Jaguar Enthusiasts’ Club (JEC) and the local community, was officially handed over to St Agnes RNLI.
Rear Admiral Mark Kerr, RNLI council member, accepted the lifeboat on behalf of the charity and handed her in to the care of St Agnes RNLI, accepted by Volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager, Bruce Baker.
Bruce said: ‘On behalf of the crew and their families I’d like to thank the donors for their generosity. I know our new lifeboat will help save lives in this community and I am delighted to accept it into the care of St Agnes Lifeboat Station.’
The JEC raised more than £37,250 towards the new inshore lifeboat and local fundraisers’ fantastic efforts over two years brought the final total to £48,000.
The service of dedication was conducted by The Reverend Canon Ken Boullier, before Graham Searle, General Manager of JEC, officially named the lifeboat XKalibur.
He said: ‘We are delighted to support the work of the RNLI and its lifesavers. It is great to know that this lifeboat will help give people something we can’t put a price on- salvation.’
The name XKalibur was chosen locally and has connections to both Cornwall and the Jaguar contribution. According to Cornish legend, Dozmary Pool was the home of the Lady of the Lake and it is here King Arthur rowed out to her and received the sword Excalibur. A careful change to the spelling, and XKalibur (after the Jaguar XK) was chosen.
Onlookers were given an insight into XKalibur’s capabilities when the volunteer crew launched on a rescue demonstration after the ceremony. The lifeboat is highly manoeuvrable and specifically suited to surf, shallow water and confined locations – often working close to cliffs, among rocks or even in caves. It carries up to three crew members and is powered by a 50hp outboard engine.
Gerald Simmons, Chairman of St Agnes RNLI Lifeboat Management Group, who opened proceedings said:
‘I have been involved with the RNLI since 1968. At that time my father Jack was the chairman of St Agnes RNLI and he oversaw proceedings when our first lifeboat arrived.
‘I was very proud and privileged to welcome everyone to celebrate the naming ceremony and dedication for our new lifeboat.’
Volunteer crews attended the ceremony just hours after responding to the call of their pagers. The crew were paged at 4am on Saturday morning to reports of a person in trouble but were later stood down without launching the lifeboat.
Notes to editors
• A selection of photos from the ceremony are attached.
• St Agnes RNLI were called on a shout just two days before the service. More information can be found here: http://rnli.org/NewsCentre/Pages/St-Agnes-and-St-Ives-RNLI-lifeboats-assist-broken-down-fishing-vessel.aspx
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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 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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