North Wales RNLI volunteers recognised for years of dedication and service

Lifeboats News Release

The selfless work of RNLI crews and fundraisers was celebrated in a special event last week as the charity thanked its volunteers for all that they do to help save lives at sea.

Lifeboat crews and fundraisers from across North Wales attended the RNLI’s 2016 Presentation of Awards Ceremony at the Mere Golf Resort and Spa in Knutsford, as the charity’s Chairman, Charles Hunter-Pease, awarded over 65 long serving awards. 

Presented on the evening were various categories of Honorary Awards.  The majority of the awardees had volunteered for the RNLI for a considerable length of time – a whole lifetime in some cases. 

RNLI Community Fundraising Area Manager, Hannah Brankling, thanked the group for their continuous hard work and support:

‘We’re here to celebrate the tireless work that goes on in our stations and fundraising groups – often quietly, often behind the scenes, always without fuss or fanfare.  Well today is our opportunity to make that fuss and say a heartfelt thank you to each of you for the many dedicated years of support you have given.  Without you, we simply couldn’t do it.’

Awards which were presented to North Wales RNLI volunteers included four Gold Badges, two Bar to the Gold Badge and a 20 year Long Service Badge to a dedicated lifeboat helm.

Josie Polden from Holywell Branch, John Edge of RNLI Mold Branch, Gwenda Evans from St Asaph and Rhyl ‘s RNLI volunteer Bill Newton were all presented with the charity’s Gold Badge for their years of fundraising in aid of the charity. 

The awards also included a Bar to the Gold Badge which were presented to Anne Kennan, a founding member of Rhosneigr and District RNLI as well as long service shop RNLI volunteer Jean Frost MBE from Rhyl. 

Supported by the charity’s fundraisers, RNLI lifeboat crews across the coast dedicate years of service to saving lives at sea.  Holyhead RNLI helm Gareth Owens was presented the RNLI’s 20 year Long Service Badge by RNLI Divisional Operations Manager, Lee Firman.

Lee Firman said:

‘Becoming a lifeboat or shore crew member is a serious commitment for anyone – volunteers must respond to their pagers at a moment’s notice, leaving behind their family, their friends and their jobs to go to someone’s rescue.  They give up their free time not just for rescue calls, but for the hours of training that are needed to keep everyone safe.’

Notes to editors
Attached are photos of:
The RNLI awardees at the 2016 presentation Awards, held at The Mere Golf Resort and Spa, Knutsford.
RNLI volunteers receiving their awards from the charity’s Chairman, Charles Hunter-Pease.
More information on the individual awards can be received by contacting Eleri Roberts on the numbers below.

RNLI media contact
For more information contact Eleri Roberts, RNLI Public Relations Manager on 01745 585162 / 07771 941390 or email  

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.