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Exmouth RNLI shop volunteers, Margaret and Biddy retire after 23 years

Lifeboats News Release

Dedicated volunteers, Margaret Griffin and Biddy Midgley both 83, retired from duty at the Exmouth RNLI visitor experience centre on Queens Drive on 30 May.

Margaret Griffin (front left) and Biddy Midgley (front right) in the Exmouth RNLI shop with other shop volunteers.

RNLI/Emma Tarling

Margaret and Biddy (front) with shop volunteers after their last shift.

In addition to working their weekly rota shifts, they also manned stalls at numerous outside events over many years. The ladies are still continuing to help at future events, such as Exmouth Open Days, which will be on 13 August this year.

Other shop volunteers threw a party at the end of their last shift, bringing in food and homemade cakes.

Margaret and Biddy received their long-service certificates, signed by Chief Executive, Paul Boissier and engraved crystal vases at the recent inshore lifeboat Naming Ceremony on 20 May. On their leaving day, they were presented with bouquets of roses and Sweet William. Exmouth RNLI Crew volunteers presented the ladies with a framed photo.

Shop Manager, Linda Cawsey said both ladies will be missed by the team:

‘Over their 23 years’ service, Margaret and Biddy have seen four inshore lifeboats, five all-weather lifeboats and a brand new lifeboat station in Exmouth. Before we moved into our new boathouse, shop volunteers worked inside the old lifeboat station alongside Crew volunteers. Their knowledge has helped me in my initial period as joint Manager with all their valuable experience and they will be greatly missed.’

Notes to Editors

More details on our charity’s Respect the Water campaign can be found here:

Photos: (Credit Exmouth RNLI)

PR310517 Margaret Griffin (front left) and Biddy Midgley (front right) in the Exmouth RNLI shop with other shop volunteers.

For more information please telephone Emma Tarling, Exmouth RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07837 810082 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