‘We train on a Thursday and a Sunday to give people the opportunity to train when it suits them - to fit in with their jobs, life and family commitments. It enables us to do night-time training during the winter. It gives newer crew the experience of being out in the dark in quite rough seas. It gets them used to that environment. It’s essential that as a group we continue to train.
‘There are about 50 of us at Barmouth Lifeboat Station, and it’s all hands on deck. New crew members will start off by going off down to the beach with the shore crew to see how we launch and recover the lifeboats. Then they’ll learn about the lifeboats themselves. They’ll do a bit of everything really, so they can help out.
‘If I go out in a storm to help somebody I’ll do everything I can to help them. I won’t stop until we’ve either achieved our goal or it’s become too dangerous or impossible to continue. I’ve always got in mind the safety of my crew, and my lifeboat.
‘Training is important for me too. I’ve learnt many things from previous coxswains. It all stands me in good stead to do my job. Right now, I’m training to be an assessor-trainer for the station. It’s helping me to develop my role and it’s keeping me on my toes as I learn new skills. I hope to be able to pass on some of this training to future crews.’
Crew training is behind everything we do. It prepares us - whether it’s our first shout, or our hundredth. It gives us the skills to operate in a challenging environment.