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Exmouth RNLI volunteers host a visit for 12 visually impaired guests

Lifeboats News Release

On 10 May, 12 visually impaired visitors, 8 helpers, 9 guide dogs and 2 organisers visited Exmouth lifeboat station as part of their holiday at Cliffden Hotel, Teignmouth with Action for the Blind; working with the RNIB.

Lifeboat Visits Officer, Derek Cairns and Shore Crew volunteer, Neil Cannon informed the visitors about the work of Crew volunteers and stories about recent rescues. In two groups, the guests were shown around the Shannon class lifeboat R and J Wellburn, D class lifeboat George Bearman, both launch and recovery systems and personal protective equipment; through their sense of touch.

Organiser, Brian Hall MBE said of the visit:

‘All our visually impaired guests and volunteers thoroughly enjoyed the tour of Exmouth lifeboat station. Lifeboat volunteers’ explanations and hands on approach suited our group perfectly. This week we had organised a walk to Sandy Bay and decided to pre-book the visit to break up the walk. We run theme breaks to allow our visually impaired guests experience everyday things we take for granted and they really enjoy the sense of achievement through this.’

Derek said: 'We've never had a request like this before but we welcome everyone to the station who would like to hear about what we do. We are currently planning to run short, informed tours throughout the summer season, which holidaymakers can book at our shop from late June.'

You can book a visit for your group by emailing Derek: or see our visits page on

Notes to Editors

Photos: (credit: Exmouth RNLI)


Derek and Neil with their visually impaired visitors, helpers and dogs in front of Exmouth lifeboat station.

For more information please telephone Emma Tarling, Exmouth RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07837 810082 or email: or Emma Haines, South division Public Relations Manager on 07786 668847 or email:​

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