Penlee RNLI celebrate the opening of their new lifeboat station
Penlee RNLI volunteers hosted an official ceremony on Saturday (12 October) to open their new lifeboat station in Newlyn Harbour. Station and fundraising volunteers, alongside members of the community, supporters and donors were invited to help mark the occasion.
The ceremony, which was held in a marquee beside the new station, was opened by Chair of the Lifeboat Management Group Janet Madron who welcomed guests.
Costing just under £1.2 million, the new building has been funded by a number of generous bequests and donations from individuals, Trusts, companies and a local community appeal. Richard and Jo Archer, who have a long relationship with the volunteers at Penlee RNLI were delighted to represent them all and as part of the ceremony, hand the station into the care of the RNLI.
Richard thanked everyone involved in the many years of planning and hard work put in to create a fitting space for the volunteer crew to continue the vital work that they undertake, and for the local communities of Newlyn and Mousehole.
Richard Archer, Penlee RNLI donor said; ‘This was a very special day for us, as it is for all of the donors and supporters who have helped make this station a reality. It was a real honour to be able to stand up and represent everyone who contributed in their own way, whether with a donation of money, large or small, their time or their skills to bring this station to life. We have been friends of the Penlee volunteer crew for many years and full of admiration and respect for what they do to bring casualties home safely. We are delighted to see them in a building fit for purpose, they couldn’t deserve it more.’
The building, which was designed by architects Studio Four Architects Ltd and built by Symons Construction was handed over to the RNLI in July after nine months of construction, which saw the former one storey station knocked to the ground and a modern, two storey facility built in its place.
Stuart Popham, Chairman of the RNLI accepted the station on behalf of the RNLI and took great pleasure in handing it over to Penlee’s volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager Andrew Munson.
Reverend Yvonne Hobson, Lifeboat Station Chaplin then led the Service of Dedication and Blessing of the Lifeboats, with hymns accompanied by Joanne Courtney on the keyboard.
Guy Botterill, RNLI Area Lifesaving Manager brought the ceremony to a close, using the opportunity to thank individuals involved in both the build and the ceremony itself, as well as presenting some long service awards to Penlee RNLI volunteers.
Notes to editors
Please see attached images from the ceremony, please credit Adrian Wright for them all
Serving both the Severn-class all-weather and Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboats, which are kept afloat in Newlyn Harbour, internally, spaces within the new building are light and bright. The ground floor comprises a dedicated mechanics workshop, a spaceous crew changing room equipped with warm showers, drying facilities and a public visitor experience centre showcasing the history of Penlee RNLI and vital coastal safety information. Upstairs boasts a crew training and meeting room, a crew room where the volunteers can enjoy a hot cup of tea and debrief after a shout, and office space.
The building has been designed to respond to its working harbour setting. Within a Conservation Area and in a prominent waterfront location, the scheme reflects the nature of the surrounding timber-clad buildings. The architectural form was carefully considered; a mono-pitch roof allows for large windows which provide operational views across the water towards St Michael’s Mount and beyond. The scheme also includes a number of renewable energy features, in common with other modern stations, including solar PV panels and a ground source heat pump linked to the underfloor heating.
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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.