Abersoch RNLI starts the year with a fond farewell and a warm welcome.

Lifeboats News Release

Changes are afoot as a new Lifeboat Operations Manager is appointed at Abersoch RNLI.

RNLI/Phill Wood

Wyn Jones and Andy Vowell

Following a request from the RNLI, Andy Vowell will be moving just a short distance away to look after the new state-of-the-art lifeboat station in Pwllheli. Andy has served as Lifeboat Operations Manager for the past five years in Abersoch and takes with him a wealth of experience. First joining the crew in the summer of 1984 Andy embarked on a helms’ course the following year with his now successor, Wyn Jones. Andy served as a volunteer crew member and helm for over 12 years before leaving to pursue a career with North Wales Police. He later rejoined as a Launching Authority and then subsequently was appointed as Lifeboat Operations Manager.

Andy commented, ‘All my time spent as part of the team at Abersoch RNLI both as crew and, more recently, management has been an honour’. He added, ‘I am leaving a really good, dedicated professional team in the very capable hands of an excellent manager and good friend’.

Andy hands over to Wyn Jones, who is a well regarded local businessman. Wyn has been a long standing member of the team at Abersoch RNLI since joining as a volunteer crew member at the same time as Andy in 1984. He went on to become helm of the Atlantic 21 lifeboat and after retiring at the grand age of 45 (as was required at the time) he rejoined in 2008 as Deputy Launching Authority and has remained in that post until his recent appointment as Lifeboat Operations Manager. He is therefore well placed to take over the management of the crew and the station.

Wyn is one of the few RNLI volunteers who can say they have travelled up The Mall in London in an Atlantic 21 lifeboat having been selected to take part in the celebrations to mark the 100th birthday of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother and he also had the honour of attending the Garden Party at Buckingham Palace the following day.

Commenting on his time as a volunteer crew member, Wyn said, ‘I found helping people out to be very rewarding’. He added, ‘In my new role as Lifeboat Operations Manager I look forward to working with the whole team at Abersoch Lifeboat Station to provide a 24/7 search and rescue service which saves lives at sea’.

Abersoch RNLI Chair, Phill Brown, said, ‘Having been our Lifeboat Operations Manager for the last five years Andy has been a most diligent and hard working leader of the Abersoch RNLI team. He has always shown enthusiasm and an understanding of the differing pressures on our volunteer crew’. He added, ‘Wyn has served with Abersoch RNLI for many years and is delighted to undertake the challenge that being Lifeboat Operations Manager brings and he looks forward to receiving the same support from the volunteer crew that Andy received.’

All the crew and volunteers at Abersoch RNLI wish them both every success in their future roles.

If you get into difficulty, or spot someone in difficulty, call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

Notes to editors

· Abersoch Lifeboat Station has been operating for just over 150 years. To learn more about the lifeboat station go to: https://rnli.org/find-my-nearest/lifeboat-stations/abersoch-lifeboat-station

· The current B Class Atlantic 85 Lifeboat the‘Peter & Ann Setten’ launches to a variety of both commercial and leisure craft call-outs.

· Photo credit: Phill Wood, Abersoch RNLI

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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