Walton and Frinton volunteer retires from RNLI after 33 years of service

Lifeboats News Release

The lifeboat crew at Walton and Frinton RNLI recently waved goodbye to their good friend and colleague Ricky Farrance as he took well earned retirement from the team.

RNLI/Walton & Frinton station archives.

Ricky Farrance in the late 80s with the station's Solent Class lifeboat City of Birmingham in the background.

Ricky joined the station in the late 1980s as a shore helper and progressed through the ranks as launcher, crew and, since 2015, 2nd Coxswain. Over that time the station launched 795 times, saving 81 lives and assisting 965 other people.

He also witnessed the transition from older lifeboats that had a maximum speed of just eight knots to the modern vessels capable of more than 27 knots.

Recently Ricky took the station's Tamar class boat Irene Muriel Rees to sea for a final exercise.

It turned out to be his 'final shout' as, along with colleagues from Clacton RNLI who had come to wish him farewell, he and the crew responded to a Pan Pan urgency call from a yacht taking on water just off Walton Pier. Happily the three people on the vessel were able to make their own way into Harwich harbour once the situation had been stabilised.

To thank Ricky the station also organised a party for him and his family, at which he was presented with gifts from both the RNLI and the crew. He was also presented with a special certificate detailing his 33 years of service.

Speaking at the event, which was attended by crew past and present from Clacton and Harwich RNLI as well as his colleagues from Walton and Frinton, Ricky thanked his family as well as the team for their support over the years.

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RNLI/Dale Steggles

Ricky Farrance at the helm of the Tamar Class Irene Muriel Rees on his last exercise.

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