Salcombe RNLI volunteer is a busy bee

Lifeboats News Release

Salcombe-based Will Bees Bespoke makers of unique British goods, has launched a hand-crafted, commemorative , wash bag to celebrate 150 years of the Salcombe RNLI lifeboat station.

Will Bees Bespoke

Salcombe RNLI modelling Will Bees Bespoke wash bags for Salcombe RNLI

With 10% of all proceeds being donated to Salcombe RNLI, every purchase of the limited edition bag will help save lives at sea.

The wash bags are made from hard-wearing tarpaulin and come in two shapes, a barrel and classic wash bag shape. The bags can be personalised with complimentary contrast lettering of choice.

James Marshall, Co-Owner of Will Bees Bespoke, is one of 34 volunteers at Salcombe RNLI who are on call 24/7, ready to respond to their pagers to help someone in trouble at sea.

James joined the lifeboat crew two years ago. He said:

‘As a crew member, it was important to me that we use our skills and craftmanship at Will Bees to contribute to saving lives at sea. We wanted to create something that commemorates the anniversary that people can use and treasure as part of the legacy of the RNLI in Salcombe.

‘I feel extremely privileged to be part of an organisation with such a long and rich history. The lifeboat has always been an integral part of life here in Salcombe, with many in the crew following in the footsteps of relatives who have gone before them to continue the tradition of saving lives at sea.

‘The proceeds raised through sales of the wash bags will go towards ensuring our volunteer crew have the training and equipment they need to go to sea safely.’

He continued:

‘One of the best things about being part of the lifeboat crew is the people. It’s remarkable that you are brought into the family from day one. There is immediate trust right from the start’.

Retailing from £59, the commemorative wash bags are are available from the shop on Island Street or online at

Will Bees Bespoke makes personalised luxury leather and fabric accessories, hand-crafted at their workshop in Island Street. Their workshop and retail space is nestled among an established tradition of boatbuilding in Salcombe, where founders Wil Bees and James Marshall are based.

All Will Bees’ suppliers are UK-based and all products are handcrafted in England using traditional techniques. Smaller designs are handmade to order at the workshop in Salcombe, and the larger accessories are handmade in England by highly skilled artisans using traditional techniques.

Notes to editors

  • Please find attached the following images;
    • The limited edition, personalised wash bags modelled by the Salcombe RNLI crew including James Marshall (second from right), credit Will Bees Bespoke
    • Images of the limited edition, personalised wash bags
    • Salcombe RNLI all weather lifeboat
Facts about Salcombe RNLI lifeboat station
  • In 1869 Salcombe Lifeboat station established following the wreck of the clipper ship Gossamer of Liverpool in December of the previous year with the loss of 13 lives.
  • The Earl of Devon presented the site for the boat-house at South Sands and the High Sherriff of Devon, Richard Durant Esq provided the funds for both the lifeboat and the new building.
  • The first boat was a ten-oared, self-righter named Rescue. William Quick was appointed Coxswain.
  • 1922 the lifeboat was relocated from South Sands to current location in town
  • Today Salcombe RNLI is made up of 34 volunteers operating two lifeboats, a 25 knot Tamar Class All Weather Lifeboat The Baltic Exchange III and a 35 knot B Class Inshore Lifeboat Gladys Hilda Mustoe

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact Amy Caldwell, RNLI Regional Media Manager, rel="noopener noreferrer" on 07920 818807 or or David Dancox, Salcombe volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07720772227

Will Bees Bespoke

Will Bees Bespoke wash bag to celebrate Salcombe 150 anniversary

Will Bees Bespoke

Will Bees Bespoke wash bag to celebrate Salcombe 150 anniversary

RNLI/Amy Caldwell

Will Bees Bespoke wash bag to celebrate Salcombe 150 anniversary

Will Bees Bespoke

Will Bees Bespoke wash bag to celebrate Salcombe 150 anniversary

Will Bees Bespoke

Will Bees Bespoke wash bag to celebrate Salcombe 150 anniversary

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.

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 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.