Coxswain Graham Heritage looks back on his time on Llandudno's inshore lifeboat
Graham Heritage, Llandudno Lifeboat Station’s volunteer Coxswain, was recognised for thirty years’ service to the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (R.N.L.I) during 2018.
During those thirty years he was directly involved in rescuing hundreds of people and saving several dozen lives, undertaking a variety of different roles including that of Helm of the station’s inshore lifeboats.
While he will continue to perform his key role as Coxswain of the station’s all-weather lifeboat William F Yates, he is now withdrawing from service as a Helm of the station’s inshore lifeboat Dr Barbara Saunderson.
Commenting on reaching the age limit for service in the station’s smaller lifeboat Graham said “I look back fondly on my time in these smaller lifeboats. When I first served on them in the late 1980’s, they enabled us to launch on service more quickly and to reach casualties far more speedily than the all-weather lifeboats of the day. I will continue to be Coxswain of the all-weather lifeboat and will still see plenty of the inshore lifeboat at sea as it often works closely with the larger lifeboat, particularly during searches.”
Graham’s father, Dennis, was a member of the lifeboat crew for many years and Graham’s middle son, Luke, is now both a Helm of the Inshore lifeboat and an Assistant Mechanic of the all-weather lifeboat, carrying on a family tradition.
Notes to editors
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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 over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and, in a normal year, 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.