Wells RNLI’s new lifeboat Duke of Edinburgh arrives to sunshine and cheers

Lifeboats News Release

Wells-next-the-Sea RNLI’s new Shannon class lifeboat Duke of Edinburgh arrived in the town yesterday (Saturday 8 October) and was greeted by sunshine and cheers.

The Launch a Memory lifeboat arrived in Wells Quay at 5.30pm, carrying with it 15,000 names of loved ones in its decals, ‘RNLI13-46’.

The state-of-the-art Shannon class lifeboat, named Duke of Edinburgh in memory of the late HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, made the final part of its voyage home this weekend.

It was accompanied into the Quay by the station’s current Mersey class all weather lifeboat Doris M.Mann of Ampthill and their D class inshore lifeboat.

They were also joined by the lifeboat station’s previous Oakley class lifeboat Ernest Tom Neathercoat, which served between 1965 and 1990, and the Liverpool class lifeboat Lucy Lavers, which served as the station’s relief lifeboat in 1962 and from 1963 to 1964.

To mark the lifeboat’s arrival, Blakeney Old Wild Rovers sang sea shanties and invited everyone to join in.

The Shannon class is the fastest all-weather lifeboat in the RNLI fleet. It was funded in part through an appeal in the local Wells community, and by the Civil Service charity The Lifeboat Fund.

Although the new lifeboat station is not yet open to the public, further information on when there will be opportunities to see the lifeboat, will be released in the coming weeks.

Peter Rainsford, Chair of Wells Lifeboat Management Group, said: ‘It was incredible to welcome RNLB Duke of Edinburgh into the town today. The sun was shining, and it was lovely to see so many smiling faces. Our volunteer crew has been looking forward to this moment for so long and we can’t wait to start the next 50 years of lifesaving.’

Peter added: ‘The ‘Launch a Memory’ campaign, while a fundraiser for the charity, is also a way for us to say thank you to those people who support the lifeboat service and our volunteer lifeboat crews. It’s humbling to know that every time our new Shannon class lifeboat launches it will carry the names of 15,000 loved ones. We’re incredibly thankful to all those who have helped to make this happen.’

RNLI Picture caption

Please credit Leanne McColm.

RNLI Media contacts

For more information please contact Clare Hopps, RNLI Regional Media Officer on 07824 518641 or email: [email protected] or, Justine Sykes, RNLI Wells Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07710510516.

Leanne McColm

Leanne McColm

Leanne McColm

Leanne McColm

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

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

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.