View as PDF

Seahouses RNLI launched to investigate object in the water off Bamburgh

Lifeboats News Release

At 14.06pm on Friday 21 July, UK Coastguard requested the launch of Seahouses all-weather lifeboat, to the report from a member of the public of a white object in the sea off the Stag Rocks at Bamburgh.

Seahouses Coastguard Rescue Team initially attended to try and identify the object, which the member of public was concerned might be be a capsized yacht. Sea conditions were quite choppy, with a strengthening gusty easterly wind.

The Coastguard Team used binoculars, and spotted the object which was about a mile offshore. They could not identify exactly what it was.

Seahouses lifeboat was launched and located the object north of the Stag Rocks. It was in fact a large promotional balloon, blue and white in colour. The balloon was a hazard to small craft navigation, and was recovered by the lifeboat crew, to avoid any further reports, and to prevent it causing problems to any vessels in the area.

This material could wrap around propellers, and disable any smaller craft unlucky enough to run into it when it was floating on or just under the surface. UK Coastguard are making enquiries to trace the promoter and owner of the balloon, to offer safety advice when using such devices.

The lifeboat then returned to station (with the balloon), and was ready for service again at 15.55pm that day.

RNLI Media contacts

For more information please contact Ian Clayton, RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on: 07763 215640.

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.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

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