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HRH The Duke of Kent meets RNLI volunteers in the Channel Islands

Lifeboats News Release

His Royal Highness (HRH) The Duke of Kent met RNLI volunteers in Jersey and Guernsey during a two-day visit to the Channel Islands this week.

The royal visit started yesterday (Wednesday 11 May) at St Catherine’s RNLI, where The Duke, who is the president of the RNLI, was introduced to the volunteer crew, fundraisers and operations team at the station. He was taken on a tour of the station and invited to sign the visitors book.

Andrew Eeles, Helmsman at St Catherine’s RNLI, said: ‘It was our first royal visit at St Catherine’s so we have been preparing for it for weeks. It was great to welcome The Duke to the station. We are one big team and a visit like this brings everyone together.’

HRH The Duke of Kent then moved on to St Helier RNLI to meet the lifeboat crew and other station volunteers. He was taken on board the all-weather lifeboat George Sullivan for a tour. 

Afterwards The Duke moved into the lifeboat station where he visited the museum and shop. Long service awards were presented to RNLI volunteers Margie Richardson, Caryll McFadyen and Roy Bullen.

James Gales, St Helier Lifeboat Operations Manager, said: 'It was an honour to welcome The Duke of Kent to St Helier RNLI. Our volunteer crew and fundraisers work extremely hard and it is great for their dedication to be recognised by the President of the RNLI.'

The visit continued to St Ouen’s beach, where The Duke met RNLI lifeguard supervisors Rob Stuteley, Will Glenn and Nathan Elms.

After hearing about the work the lifeguards carry out in Jersey, The Duke was taken across the beach to watch a lifeguard rescue demonstration.

Rob said: ‘It was fantastic to welcome the Duke of Kent to the lifeguard unit at St Ouen’s and provide him with an insight into the lifesaving work RNLI lifeguards carry out in Jersey.’

On Thursday (12 May) the royal visit continued in Guernsey with a visit to St Peter Port RNLI. The Duke met the volunteer crew on board the all-weather lifeboat Spirit of Guernsey.

He then visited the crew of three historic lifeboats which were in the harbour following Liberation Day.

The planned trip to Alderney RNLI lifeboat station was cancelled on Thursday due to poor weather conditions.

Media contacts

For more information please contact Chlӧe Smith, RNLI Press Officer, on 07920 818807 or [email protected] or Emma Haines, RNLI Public Relations Manager on 07786 668847 or [email protected].

Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.