Fowey RNLI all-weather lifeboat opens for visitors
On Wednesday April 13, the Fowey RNLI all-weather lifeboat will be open to visitors for the first time in two years. Having been closed to visitors throughout the pandemic, the open lifeboat sessions will resume for the summer season.
The lifeboat will be open to visitors every Wednesday and Saturday, from 10.30am to 3.30pm. On Saturday April 16, the lifeboat will be moored up on Fowey’s Town Quay from 5pm – 7pm, where visitors will be able to go onboard and meet some of the volunteer crew members.
Fowey Open Boat tour guide, Rob Collings said: ‘Visitors can register for a time-slot and assemble in our boat-house before the tour. They will then be taken in small groups of up to eight people at a time and escorted around our Trent class lifeboat, called Maurice and Joyce Hardy 14-18. The Trent class lifeboat was developed in the early 1990s and introduced into the RNLI fleet in 1994. With a top speed of 25 knots she is ideal for offshore rescues and has the power to tow large boats to safety. She is self-righting, so should she capsize in severe weather, she will automatically right herself within a few seconds.’
Rob continues: ‘Once onboard in the wheelhouse, visitors will be shown where the key volunteer lifeboat crew members, the coxswain, helm, navigator and mechanic sit, and get to see the equipment they use and find out more about each crew members’ role. There is a lot of electronic equipment, as well as safety kit and navigational tools to look at, including radar screens, chart plotters, VHF and safety equipment.’
Visitors will also have the chance to go down into the survivors cabin and up onto the flying bridge where the coxswain has controls that mirror the helm’s controls inside the boat. After the tour, visitors are welcome to go back into the boat-house, where the D Class in-shore lifeboat is kept. There they can find out more about the history and operational aspects of the lifeboat station and also visit the RNLI shop.
Fowey lifeboat station was established over 160 years ago, and during that time their volunteer crews have been presented with 14 awards for gallantry. In the past 5 years Fowey volunteer crews have launched 176 times, assisting 335 people and saving a total of 16 lives.
The open boat sessions will be subject to weather and operational issues such as shouts. People are asked to check the Facebook page @FoweyLifeboat for up-to-date details.
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
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