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Port Erin RNLI volunteer Phil Crellin completes a 36-year career.

Lifeboats News Release

Port Erin lifeboat station has marked the end of an era as one of its volunteers retired following 36 years of service. Phil Crellin's steadfast commitment at Port Erin RNLI came to a close this week as he called time on his volunteering career with the RNLI at the age of 62.

Nigel Millard

Phil Crellin Stood outside Port Erin Lifeboat station

Phil joined the station as a volunteer crew member at 26 as he followed in his father's footsteps. He joined Port Erin RNLI in 1986 as a volunteer on the all-weather lifeboat, then over time became the station's Lifeboat Operations Manager. There had always been a strong family connection with the RNLI as his mother was a member of Port Erin RNLI as a member of the ladies guild.

In 1987, he first went out to sea aboard the 37 ft Rother-class lifeboat 37-27 Osman Gabriel. He continued his training throughout his RNLI volunteer career until 1992. The lifeboat station saw the Rother-class being retired with a B-Class Atlantic 21 B-594 Herbert and Edith taking its place. This saw Phil become a helmsman on the inshore lifeboat at Port Erin.

2004 saw Phil become one of the station's three volunteer Deputy Launching Authority ( DLA ). The Deputy Launching Authority assisted the Lifeboat Operation's Manager by helping with the station and volunteers, receiving the initial service call from HM Coastguard, and making the launch request to the volunteers.

Phil also saw the transition from the station's Atlantic 21 to the B class inshore lifeboat Atlantic 85 Muriel and Leslie in 2007. His two children, Rachel and Richard, were aged 17 when they joined, following their father as RNLI volunteers.

In the final years of Phil's career, he has been the station Lifeboat Operation's Manager ( LOM ) just like his father was in earlier years. In his time he's overseen numerous volunteers growing into their roles; from new helms, mechanics, lifeboat press officers, crew and many more.

During Phil's 36 years with the RNLI, he has seen Port Erin's Lifeboats launch over 200 times. As a crew member and helmsman, he saw 103 launches with 13 lives rescued from shipwreck along with 98 launches as DLA and LOM.

Phil Crellin: 'I wish Port Erin lifeboat station and the RNLI the very best for the future and would encourage anyone to consider volunteering at Port Erin RNLI or any lifeboat station.'

Volunteer Crew of the Rother-class at Port Erin. Phil can be seen second from the left on the back row

RNLI/Callum Qualtrough

Volunteer Crew of the Rother-class at Port Erin
Volunteer Crew of the Atlantic 21 B-class at Port Erin. Phil can be seen seventh from the left

RNLI/Callum Qualtrough

Volunteer Crew of the Atlantic 21 B-class at Port Erin
Phil Crellin look towards the Atlantic 85 Port Erin's Current Lifeboat

RNLI/Callum Qualtrough

Phil Crellin look towards the Atlantic 85

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.