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Award marks 10 years of service by retired Hunstanton RNLI shore crew member Ken

Lifeboats News Release

A volunteer who devoted 10 years' service to the charity that saves lives at sea has been honoured with a special award.

RNLI/Chris Bishop

Ken Gregg receives his 10-year service award from Hunstanton Lifeboat Operations Manager Rigil Kent
Retired firefighter Ken Gregg served as a plant driver at Hunstanton RNLI, on the Norfolk coast, for 10 years between 2009 and 2019.

He was part of the shore crew, who use the station's tractor to launch and recover its lifeboat Spirit of West Norfolk.

Ken, now 69, retired from his RNLI duties in 2019. But the Covid pandemic and family events prevented him from collecting his award.
Hunstanton lifeboat operations manager Rigil Kent presented Ken's framed certificate at the boat house on Sunday, 19 November.

'Ken was a retired firefighter, so with his previous experience he fitted in well with the emergency environment,' he said.

'Ten years is a fantastic achievement, it's no mean feat.'

Plant operators are a key part of the team at Hunstanton, which is believed to be the first station in the country to use a tractor to launch its lifeboats after a century or so of using horses borrowed from local farmers during emergencies.

At low tide, the lifeboat needs to be towed across the sands on its rig to find sufficient depth to launch.

In rougher seas, the shore crew may use net recovery to return the vessel to its station afterwards.

Notes to editor

Hunstanton is one of the RNLI's busiest stations in Norfolk.

So far in 2023, its lifeboat and hovercraft have launched 27 times, with one life saved and 19 people aided.

RNLI media contacts

For more information call Chris Bishop, Hunstanton RNLI volunteer Deputy Lifeboat Press Officer on 07584 147219 or Clare Hopps, Regional Media Officer on 07824 518641.

RNLI/Chris Bishop

Plant drivers operate the tractor which launches and recovers the lifeboat at Hunstanton

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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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.