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Larne RNLI rub shoulders with royalty at Hillsborough Castle

Lifeboats News Release

Two couples who volunteer with Larne RNLI were chosen to represent the County Antrim lifeboat station and attend the recent Hillsborough Garden Party where HRH Prince Harry was special guest.

McCracken Photography

Larne RNLI volunteer crew member Fiona Kirkpatrick & fundraiser Alison Ford-Hutchinson meet HRH Prince Harry

Volunteer lifeboat crew and married couple Fiona and Barry Kirkpatrick attended the event with another married lifeboat station couple, Deputy Lifeboat Launching Authority Phil Ford-Hutchinson and his fundraiser wife Alison. While in attendance the two couples met with Prince Harry and discussed the busy lifeboat station and its work in the community.

The group were presented to HRH Prince Harry by the Deputy Lieutenant of County Antrim Col Neil Salisbury OBE.

Commenting on the event, Larne RNLI crewmember Fiona Kirkpatrick said, ‘We were honoured to be asked to represent our lifeboat station and we met some incredible people at the event. We were introduced to HRH Prince Harry and of course took the opportunity to discuss our station and the work of our volunteer lifeboat crew and fundraisers in Larne.’

‘The Prince was interested to know how many volunteers we had at our station and commented on how voluntary groups like the RNLI require a lot of hard work and commitment from a team.'

McCracken Photography

Larne RNLI volunteer crew member Fiona Kirkpatrick & fundraiser Alison Ford-Hutchinson enjoy meeting HRH Prince Harry

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