Blackpool RNLI volunteer retires after 50 years of dedicated service

Lifeboats News Release

Blackpool RNLI volunteers recently said a very fond farewell to one of their longest serving volunteers, Deputy Launching Authority, Paul Parton. Paul retired from his voluntary role at the end of August after an extraordinary 50 years of saving lives at sea with the charity.

Paul Parton in RNLI branded clothing


Paul Parton RNLI volunteer Deputy Launching Authority

Paul Parton joined Blackpool RNLI lifeboat station team in 1969. Initially Paul joined as a member of the lifeboat station shore crew before becoming a member of the lifeboat crew and progressing to the role of helm. After retiring from the lifeboat crew in 1998 Paul took on the vital roles of volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer and Deputy Launching Authority.

During his 50 years at the lifeboat station Paul was involved in countless rescues and saved many lives. Paul’s contribution to saving lives in Blackpool is even more impressive when you consider that in addition to 50 years of volunteering with the RNLI, he was also a full-time fire fighter & a member of Blackpool Beach Patrol.

Volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager, Keith Horrocks MBE said ‘Paul has had a long and proud association with Blackpool Lifeboat Station and we will all miss him. We owe him a very significant debt of gratitude for his years of service. He has been an integral part of the lifeboat team here at Blackpool, volunteering through many changes we have seen, from the transition from an all weather lifeboat to an inshore lifeboat station. Paul was also part of the team of helms who made the D & B Class inshore lifeboats work in the surf conditions we get here at Blackpool.

Blackpool RNLI lifeboat station was established 155 years ago, and it’s incredible to think that Paul has been a member of our station team for nearly a third of its history. We’re very grateful for all he has done and hope him, and his wife Coral enjoy their newfound freedom from the pager, sleepless nights and disruption.’

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact Esther Lowe Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer, RNLI Blackpool telephone 01253 620424 or email [email protected]

Paul Parton responding to call out from lifeboat station in full kit

Blackpool Evening Gazette

Paul Parton responding to call out from station in 1982
D class lifeboat with crew behind pose in the water line in front of the Tower

Blackpool Evening Gazette

Blackpool RNLI volunteers pose with D class lifeboat in 1983. Paul Parton far left.

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.

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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.