Seahouses lifeboat crew bid farewell to “Grace Darling”

Lifeboats News Release

At 1pm on Wednesday 13 January 2021, the former Seahouses Mersey Class lifeboat, Grace Darling, was launched at Seahouses Harbour for the final time, as her crew sailed her to be Amble.

RNLB 12-16 Grace Darling being escorted into Seahouses in 1991

RNLI/Ian Clayton

RNLB 12-16 Grace Darling being escorted into Seahouses in 1991
There she was lifted out of the water before being loaded onto a road vehicle for her journey to the RNLI’s All Weather Lifeboat Centre in Poole.

The lifeboat was funded by various legacies and the Grace Darling Appeal Fund, and arrived on station at Seahouses in July 1991. She served as the station lifeboat until December 2020, when the charity's new Shannon Class lifeboat John and Elizabeth Allan replaced her as the operational station lifeboat.

The old lifeboat’s first call was to assist an RAF Rescue Helicopter which had to ditch a winchman in the sea and make an emergency landing due to engine problems, on a nearby beach. Thankfully the winchman was recovered safely from the water. The lifeboat also attended many diving incidents and assisted cargo vessels that had ran aground of the Farne Islands during the night.

Lifeboat Operations Manager Ian Clayton said: 'It was rather sad to see her go, she had served Seahouses well since 1991, and was a very capable boat. I saw her arrive in 1991, so today was the end of an era. Technology moves on, and the new lifeboat is a brilliant asset for the station, and her advanced technology will greatly enhance life saving capability at Seahouses.'

RNLI Picture captions
The photographs show Grace Darling's arrival arrival in 1991 and her departure on 13 January 2021.

RNLI Media contacts
For more information please contact Ian Clayton, RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer: ian_clayton@rnli.org.uk

Grace Darling being taken to the slip for the last time

RNLI/Ian Clayton

Grace Darling being taken to the slip for the last time
Grace Darling's final launch at Seahouses

RNLI/Ian Clayton

Grace Darling's final launch at Seahouses
Grace Darling leaves Seahouses Harbour on passage to Amble

RNLI/Ian Clayton

Grace Darling leaves Seahouses Harbour on passage to Amble
Grace Darling's final passage to Amble, not the best of days.

RNLI/Ian Clayton

Grace Darling's final passage to Amble, not the best of days.

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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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