Aug 25


Byline: At 11.20am on Thursday the 25th of August, 2016 volunteer crew members from Criccieth's RNLI Lifeboat Station were called into action after 5 people and 2 dogs became stranded on a sandbank with an incoming tide.
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HM Coastguard requested the immediate launch of the station's inshore rescue boat, Margret a Nantw, following reports of the party being stranded on the north bank part of Black Rock sands; near the mouth of the estuary. 

The lifeboat was quickly on scene and took the walkers and their dogs ashore in two sets - as the final set was transferred onto the beach, the bank became submerged.  Once ashore, they were placed in the care of Criccieth's HM Coastguard team.  This season, the Lifeboat Station at Criccieth has attended several similar incidents in which people have walked out along the sandbank without noticing lower lying sands nearer the shore, fill with water.  At times, the water entering these channels can become fast flowing.

Following the lifeboat's return to station, Helmsman Gordon Emery stated 'Once again we make an appeal to people walking out on the sandbanks in the Black Rock area to be particularly mindful of incoming tide times.  Information is available at the main entrance and people should allow enough time to make sure they can safely get back onto the main beach'.


For further information, please contact Ifer Gwyn, Criccieth Lifeboat Press Officer & Crew on 07554445316

Aug 24


Byline: Invergordon RNLI held their Annual Open Day in partnership with the Port of Cromarty Firth on Saturday 20th August.
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With mixed reports of the weather forecast the volunteer fundraisers, volunteer crew and Port staff pulled out all the stops to ensure it was going to be a day to remember whatever the weather threw at us.

With a 6am start, the tents and the infrastructure for the day began to take shape with the mist rolling in, and the iconic Caribbean Princess only a slight outline figure close by.

With lots to do for all the family, the Sun made a very welcome appearance and remained on station all day! 

The day kicked off with RNLI mascot Stormy Stan leading the Ardross Pipeband down from Invergordon High-street to the Shore road venue, with a fine medley of tunes.

The Ardross Pipeband played down the centre of the Craft Market to officially open the Open Day which attracted many to listen to the tunes that the band produced.

A fantastic Craft Market offered displays and goods on sale from very talented crafters like Gemporia Crafts, Linda’s Patchwork, Shin Horn, Beckmor Crafts, The RVS, Wee Grey Stag, Fancy Dancy Felt, Tweedie Flowers, Tamara Ferguson, Little Miss Tweenie and Rab Lights. It was a popular venue for locals and visitors alike, with many from the visiting cruise ship spending the day at the Port and enjoying the sunshine and the craic.

With the crowds continuing to gather and the weather holding up, the famous RNLI BBQ was in full flow, with queues all day long.  Visitors were then able to quickly cool down at the Ice Cream van in a convenient location nearby.

There were lots of things to see and do: at Paco’s Pet Show all shapes and sizes of dogs and even snakes competed for a prize in the various categories.  Best in Show was awarded to Franko the Pug & Jess the Scotty Dog.  (A full list of winners are found below.) Tours around the Service Base enabled visitors to see the iconic jack-up and semisubmersible rigs up close, including the brand new Maersk Highlander rig currently alongside the quay. The Port welcomed a breath taking Sailing Ship called ‘Thalassa’ whose Captain kindly offered to berth in the West Harbour and open the ship for tours around the deck.

In between the events, the musicians kept the atmosphere alive by belting out the tunes and an excellent display of Highland Dancing from the Ann Noble School of Dance, and the Colouring Competition where Joanna Duncan (aged 10) coloured away to win the Remote Control Model Lifeboat that was up for grabs! 

At 1pm teams gathered in fancy dress to pick out the best looking raft of the bunch (if they hadn’t already selected and decorated it). They then made their way to the beach shoreline and waited anxiously for the siren to sound before frantically paddling around the set out course, trying their best to outdo each other and scoop the RNLI Winners Shield. With ideal paddling conditions and the watchful eyes of the safety boats, the rafts took off and battled against the tide and wind with the Howdens Team from Invergordon winning the race and ILM Highland coming runner up. The Fancy Dress was awarded to The Marine Hotel who dressed as convincing Pirates.

The Open Water Wild Swim was another crowd puller on the day with 14 open water swimmers taking to the Cromarty Firth to take on the 1 ¾ mile challenge, albeit not a race but the crowd were very keen to know who completed it the quickest.  The swimmers did not disappoint, with Port of Cromarty Firth member of staff and experienced wild swimmer Colin MacKinnon romping home with a ten minute lead from the group in a staggering 41 minutes.  Behind Colin was Terry Gallagher; tearing up the firth in 52 minutes. The times are listed below for swimmers.

The big finale was a mock rescue display from the Invergordon & Kessock Lifeboats and Coastguard Helicopter 951 from Inverness.  It wowed the crowds with winching operations, man overboard, sea recoveries, smoke flares and the sheer power these SAR units produce and how seamlessly they all work together.

Overall the Invergordon RNLI and Port of Cromarty Firth Open Day was hailed a fantastic day all round by many throughout the day.  The crowds enjoyed excellent music played in the open air by Black Rock Ceilidh Band, Feis Chataibh Ceilidh and the local Ardross Pipeband. The day had something for everyone, and helped visitors understand the vital work of both the RNLI and the Port.

Lifeboat Spokesman Michael MacDonald said “The Lifeboat Open day this year was excellent, with everyone having fun from the Bouncy Castle to the Raft Race.  The crowds were amazing, everyone was happy, and we raised an overwhelming £6000 for the RNLI which will go towards continuing to help save lives at sea. We would like to thank everyone who came along on Saturday and helped make it a day to remember.”

Chief Executive of the Port of Cromarty Firth, Bob Buskie also commented on the day “Thank you to everyone who supported the Open Day, from the staff and volunteers at the Port and the RNLI to the visitors, passengers and crew who came along, and to all who took part in the competitions. It was a resounding success and we’re delighted to have helped our local RNLI raise so much money to support their critical work. The Port and RNLI Open Day is always a highlight in our calendar and this year was no exception”.

Raft Race Winners:

1st Place        - Howdens Joinery (Invergordon)

Runner Up    - ILM Highland (Alness)

Fancy Dress - The Marine Hotel (Invergordon)

Wild Swim Timings:

1st Place        - Colin Mackinnon   (41.00)

2nd Place        - Terry Gallagher     (52.04)

3rd Place        - Rick Wells               (54.08)

Pet Show Placings

Best in Show            - Franko The Pug / Jess MacKinnon

Reserve Champion - Cosmic Woodhead

Best Coat                  - Lucy Mackenzie

Wagiest Tail              - Roxy Mitchell

Junior Handler         - Lucy

Loveliest Lady          - Fluffty

Fabulous Fella         - Jaffa The Beagle

Over a Year              - Shakira & Fergus Grant

Best Baby                  - Finn

Aug 23


Byline: The captain of the merchant vessel "AASLI" had contacted Holyhead coastguard Co-ordinating centre to ask advice on a sick crew member. He was put in touch with a hospital doctor via a radio link.
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The doctor recommended the crewman should be evacuated to a hospital for further investigations, and the pagers were activated for Rhyl's All-weather lifeboat crew. The vessel was at anchor some ten miles offshore, and the lifeboat was alongside nearly an hour later. The crewman was assisted on to the lifeboat and was cared for by two of the lifeboat's casualty care team. The crewman spoke very little English, and so hand signals and gestures were used to help overcome the language barrier. The man was given oxygen to assist his conditions and his condition continuously monitored.  The lifeboat then returned at full speed back to Rhyl, and the man was taken to Ysbyty Glan Clwyd Hospital by ambulance.

Coxswain Martin Jones said " The lifeboat crew worked very well to relieve the man's condition, and their training in casualty care ensured a successful transfer to the ambulance."

Aug 21


Byline: At the recent Gala organised by the Barrow Ladies Lifeboat Guild, Joanne Barrow, on behalf of the Furness Building Society, presented a cheque for £10,765.69 to the Barrow RNLI.
Page Content: The cheque was presented to Jackie Bailey, Treasurer of the Barrow Ladies Lifeboat Guild and President of the Barrow RNLI, Marcus Cardew.


The money was donated as a result of funds invested by individuals in the Furness Building Society’s Affinity Account. Affinity Accounts are linked to particular charities and the more that savers put into their accounts the greater the donation that is made to the associated charity.

This substantial donation will provide a very welcome boost to the costs of operating and maintaining the Barrow station. The RNLI is the charity that saves lives at sea and relies entirely on voluntary donations to enable its volunteers to undertake their life saving work.

Aug 21


Byline: Angle RNLI open day launched to success on Saturday (August 20), with over 250 visitors braving the stormy weather to see the lifeboats, meet the crew members and tour the £1.2m boathouse.
Page Content: Centre of attention were the £2.6m Tamar class all weather lifeboat Mark Mason and the £42,000 D class inshore lifeboat SuperG II.

There were tours of the state-of-the-art Tamar lifeboat, which is among the busiest all weather RNLI lifeboats in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland, and close-up inspections of the inshore lifeboat.

Visitors were welcomed by Lifeboat Operations Manager Julian Hammond and RNLI mascot Stormy Stan (Ian Foulstone), and there was something for everyone during the afternoon.

Stalls for refreshments (Elaine Richards, wife of Crew Member David Richards); RNLI souvenirs (Linda Foulstone, Station Treasurer); and children’s games (Linda Hammond, wife of Lifeboat Operations Manager Julian Hammond), were kept very busy.

A superb display of working models by West Wales Model Boats included the Tenby RNLI Tamar class lifeboat Haydn Miller and Fishguard RNLI’s Trent class lifeboat Blue Peter VII, from Chris Par; a US Coastguard vessel and the German lifeboat Adolph Bernpohl from Andy Kiernan, and a German King Tiger Tank of 1944-45 and the John Fitch world’s first powered boat of 1786, shown by Mike Shepperd.

Note to editors


RNLI family: Angle Coxswain Lewis Creese and his partner, Crew Member Rhiannon Tebbutt, with their seven-month old son Luke at the lifeboat station’s open day on Saturday (August 20).
Picture: Martin Cavaney Photography.

Angle RNLI personnel take a break after their successful open day on Saturday (August 20). In the group (left to right) are: Back row, Roger Parsons (Deputy Head Launcher), Davy Barrett (Deputy Launching Authority), Martyn Brock (Crew Member), Richard Davidson (Crew Member), Adam Stringer (Assistant Mechanic). Front row, David Richards (Crew Member), Anna Foulstone (Crew Member), Sarah Lunn (Crew Member), Linda Foulstone (Treasurer), Digby Jones (Head Launcher), Julian Hammond (Lifeboat Operations Manager) and Lewis Creese (Coxswain). Missing from the group are: Rev Mike Brotherton (Deputy Launching Authority), Danny Richards (Second Coxswain), Nigel Berry (Deputy Second Coxswain) and Hywel Dyer (Crew Member).
Photo: Angle RNLI.

Chris Par (left) and Mike Sheppard, of West Wales Model Boats, are pictured with working models of RNLI Tamar, Trent and Waveney class lifeboats at Angle RNLI’s open day on Saturday (August 20).
Picture: Martin Cavaney Photography.

Nigel Berry (Deputy Second Coxswain) at the helm of Angle RNLI’s Tamar class all weather lifeboat Mark Mason, with some of the visitors who attended the station’s open day on Saturday (August 20).
Picture: Martin Cavaney Photography

RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone Ted Goddard, RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer, Angle, on 01437 763675 or Danielle Rush, Public Relations Manager (Wales & the West) on 07786668829 or 01745585162 or by email: or RNLI Public Relations on 01202336789

Aug 21


Byline: Kyle RNLI's volunteer crew continued their extremely busy week when they were paged at 6:23pm Saturday 20 August to reports of a mother and her child cut off by the tide whilst walking on the Ashaig coastline
Page Content: Kyle lifeboat launched at 6:30pm yesterday at the request of Stornoway Coastguard, after the Dutch tourists got stuck on a small island between Ashaig and Broadford.  The lifeboat made best speed towards the scene and began a search of the many small islands and rocks along that stretch of coastline.  The Coastguard unit from Broadford then located the casualties and updated the crew with their position, however due to the difficult and rocky nature of the shallow waters in that area, it took the lifeboat a while to reach the 2 people.  The crew assessed the condition of the casualties who were cold but otherwise uninjured, before taking them onboard the lifeboat and transferring them to the Coastguard unit at Broadford pier.  The lifeboat then returned to Kyle and was refuelled and ready for service again at 7.50pm.

A Kyle RNLI spokesperson said: ‘They were very happy to see us as they were both beginning to get very cold.  They had been walking along the coast and were caught by the speed of the incoming tide which is very quick in that area’.

At 9:20am this morning the lifeboat crew were back in action for the 6th time in as many days, after reports were received of a dinghy adrift in Scalpay bay.  The lifeboat arrived on scene and took the small vessel, which was in a state of disrepair, under tow back to Kyle.

Speaking of the recent busy period, the spokesperson said: ‘This has been a remarkable week with an unprecedented 6 shouts in the past 6 days. Happily, all of them had a successful outcome and we have rescued 13 people and 1 dog.  We are all volunteers and have full time jobs, however thanks to some understanding bosses we are able to drop everything and respond when the pager goes off’.


 Notes to editors:

  • For further details on the 2 people rescued, please contact Stornoway Coastguard
  • Picture shows a crew member assessing the condition of the casualties whilst the lifeboat stands by.
  • Please credit picture to Kyle RNLI


RNLI media contacts:

Andrew MacDonald, Kyle of Lochalsh RNLI Volunteer Press Officer on 07748 707606 or

Or Richard Smith, Public Relations Manager Scotland on 01738 642956, 07786 668903 or

Or Henry Weaver, RNLI Press Officer for Scotland, 01738 642946, 07771 943026,

Or contact RNLI Public Relations on 01202 336789.

Aug 20


Byline: After a week of unrelenting wet and windy weather, the rain stayed away for Tobermory’s Lifeboat Day. And during the final preparations the previous evening, the volunteer crew were called away to assist a stricken yacht in the Sound of Iona.
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The hardworking organisers of Tobermory RNLI’s annual Lifeboat Day were hugely relieved to awake on the morning of Sunday 14th August to find that the rain had finally stopped falling. A few hours later, there were big crowds at the event being treated to a range of stalls, games and activities – and of course, the raft race which was won this year by the Tobermory Guides. Even school children, who were no doubt dreading the new term starting in just a few days, had an opportunity to ‘sponge the teacher’ with local schoolteachers, Kirsty and Kirsten attempting to dodge the wet sponges being so enthusiastically thrown by some of their pupils.
Just a few hours previously, Tobermory RNLI's volunteer crew launched at 1811 to go to the assistance of a yacht dragging its anchor in the Bull Hole in the Sound of Iona. The yacht was unable to use its engine as it had overheated. On arrival at the scene, the yacht had managed to get underway and was heading to the shelter of Tinker's Hole. The lifeboat escorted the yacht and once it was confirmed that it was securely at anchor and the skipper was happy, the volunteer crew headed back to Tobermory where the lifeboat was refuelled and made ready for service shortly after 2200.
Tobermory RNLI Coxswain David McHaffie said: ‘We’re still gathering in the funds but over £4000 was raised to help save lives at sea. Thanks to everyone for their generosity and we hope you had as much fun as we did. Thanks too to all the stall holders, businesses and individuals who so kindly donated prizes and things to sell, as well as to our colleagues from the Fire Brigade and Tobermory Coastguard who attended with their equipment and also to our hosts, the Tobermory Harbour Association. We’re also grateful yet again to Alasdair McCrone and Alasdair Satchell for their witty and energetic commentary. Finally, we'd also like to thank our RNLI shop volunteers who took more than £700 on the day and particularly our amazing Fundraising Branch who have been working and planning hard behind the scenes for many months to ensure that today was a huge success.’
Notes to editors
The photograph shows Tobermory RNLI Coxswain David McHaffie with local teacher and Tobermory RNLI Education Officer, Kirsty Blackhall at the 'sponge the teacher' stall. Please credit RNLI/Sam Jones.
For further information, please contact Sam Jones, Deputy Launching Authority and Deputy Lifeboat Press Officer on 07747601900 or email

Aug 20


Byline: Margate RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat has come to the aid of a motor yacht which encountered machinery problems in shipping lanes off the north Kent coast.
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The alarm was raised early yesterday morning (Friday 19 August) when a 31ft motor yacht with one person on board contacted coastguards to say they had broken down close to the busy Princes Channel shipping lane around ten miles north west of Margate.
Margate RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat was tasked to assist and once on scene checked on the welfare of the solo yachtsman. The craft was taken under tow for the three-hour journey to Ramsgate harbour where, once inside the harbour itself the yacht had sufficient power to secure itself alongside a pontoon.
Ian Lowe, Deputy Launching Authority, Margate RNLI said: ‘This solo yachtsman made his own vital initial steps to his safe rescue by having a marine VHF radio, the ability to provide an exact location using GPS and by noting navigation marks adjacent to him. His preparation enabled a prompt rescue minimising the time he was vulnerable to passing large vessels restricted in their ability to pass him in the narrow channel to which they are confined.’
RNLI media contacts
·         Peter Barker, RNLI Margate Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer 07974 064304
·         Tim Ash, RNLI Public Relations Manager (London/East/South East) 0207 6207426, 07785 296252
·         Sophie Coller-Nielsen Press Officer (London/East/South East) 0207 6207416, 07824 416615
·         For enquiries outside normal business hours, contact the RNLI duty press officer on 01202 336789

Aug 20


Byline: Kyle of Lochalsh lifeboat launched at 10.25pm on Friday 19th August, to reports of 2 adults and 1 child in difficulty in a canoe which had got caught up in the strong tidal currents in the Kylerhea area
Page Content: The volunteer crew were paged at 10.19pm at the request of Stornoway Coastguard, after a member of the public reported seeing the people get into a canoe and leave the shore in Glenelg a short while before getting into difficulty.

The lifeboat arrived on scene at 10.35pm, and along with a passing cargo vessel Havgull, began a search of the narrows looking for the casualties, with the lifeboat searching from the north end of the narrows whilst the Havgull searched from the south.  Around 5 minutes later, the crew of the cargo vessel spotted the casualties on a remote part of the shore to the south of the Glenelg ferry pier.  The lifeboat made contact with the 3 people and established that none of them were injured, however due to the rocky shoreline and rapidly dropping tide, could not reach them.  As the casualties were very disorientated and did not know the area, the lifeboat crew decided to drop one of the crew members at the ferry pier to walk the half mile over the hill to reach the stranded people.  Once the crew member reached them, it was established that the initial report was incorrect and the 3 casualties were in fact all adults.  They were then helped back over the hill to the lifeboat at the ferry pier, where the 3 people decided they would walk back along the road to where they were staying.

At 11.45pm the lifeboat returned to Kyle where it was refuelled and made ready for service.

Speaking of the incident, a Kyle RNLI spokesperson said: ‘The current swept them away from the shore but they were extremely lucky and managed to reach the part of the coast where they were found.  They were trying to canoe from Glenelg village back to where they were camping, but due to it getting dark, they became disorientated and paddled into the strong tidal flow at the exit to the narrows, which at times can flow at a speed of 8 knots’.


 Notes to editors:

  • This is the fourth callout for the lifeboat since Tuesday
  • Please credit photo to RNLI


 RNLI media contacts:

Andrew MacDonald, Kyle of Lochalsh RNLI Volunteer Press Officer on 07748 707606 or

 Or Richard Smith, Public Relations Manager Scotland on 01738 642956, 07786 668903 or

Or Henry Weaver, RNLI Press Officer for Scotland, 01738 642946, 07771 943026,

 Or contact RNLI Public Relations on 01202 336789

Aug 20


Byline: As the temperature increased, so did the callouts for The Kyle of Lochalsh RNLI crew, who had a very busy afternoon on Tuesday (16th), getting called out to 3 different emergencies
Page Content: The crew were first paged at 12.45pm today to reports of a rib with 5 persons & 1 dog on board, having lost power between Kyle and Kyleakin and drifting towards the rocks.  The lifeboat launched 7 minutes later, and by that time the rib had drifted towards the pontoons in Kyle, and a moored yacht had managed to get them alongside. The lifeboat took the rib under tow back to the slip where it was taken out of the water.  The lifeboat was refuelled and ready for service again at 1:15pm.

The Crew were called into action once again at 3.55pm when they were requested to assist the Scottish Ambulance Service with a woman who was in the remote Coral beach area of Plockton.  The lifeboat made best speed towards the area and arrived on scene at 4.20pm where they found the casualty, who was in her 60s, was suffering with breathing difficulties.  The lifeboat took the casualty and one of the paramedics on board before returning to Kyle Pontoons where an ambulance was waiting.  The lifeboat was refuelled and ready for service again at 5:15pm.

The pagers went off for the third time at 8.06pm, after 2 walkers got into difficulty walking on the Applecross peninsula.  The men were walking the coast from Toscaig to Kishorn and had gotten into difficulty due to the heat, with one of them also injuring his ankle.  The lifeboat arrived in Kishorn at 8.25pm, where the crew began a systematic search of the coastline heading west towards Toscaig.  The casualties were located 2 miles west of Kishorn Port and were quickly taken on board the lifeboat to be assessed.  The casualties were found to be dehydrated and one had slightly injured his ankle, but were otherwise fit and well.  The crew transported the 2 men back to Kishorn where they had a car waiting.  The lifeboat returned to station and was refuelled and ready for service again at 10.20pm. 

Speaking of the busy afternoon, a Kyle RNLI spokesperson said: ‘This was an extremely busy afternoon for the crew, however we had a good outcome on all 3 shouts which is the main thing’.


Notes to editors:

  • Please credit picture to the RNLI
  • For further details on the female recused from Plockton, please speak to the Scottish Ambulance Service


 RNLI media contacts:

Andrew MacDonald, Kyle of Lochalsh RNLI Volunteer Press Officer on 07748 707606 or

 Or Richard Smith, Public Relations Manager Scotland on 01738 642956, 07786 668903 or

 Or Henry Weaver, RNLI Press Officer for Scotland, 01738 642946, 07771 943026,

 Or contact RNLI Public Relations on 01202 336789.