Museum-welcomes-first-RNLI-E-class-lifeboat-to-historic-collection

Byline: At the age of 11, E class Olive Laura Deare will be the youngest lifeboat to move into the Chatham Historic Dockyard. She will join many of the RNLI’s older generation of lifeboat in the exhibition as well as a wider collection of boats and ships.
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The RNLI first introduced lifeboats on the Thames in 2002 after the investigation into the Marchoness disaster of 1989 identified that a rescue service on the river was needed. After that accident, in which a pleasure boat collided with a barge on the river leaving 51 people dead, the charity stepped in to provide its lifesaving experience and technology.

Four lifeboat stations were opened on the Thames on 20 January 2002 to provide lifeboat cover for the capital’s river; at Teddington, Chiswick, Tower and Gravesend.

Three of the lifeboat stations, Gravesend, Chiswick and Tower, were allocated the specially designed E class lifeboat. This class of lifeboat is the fastest lifeboat in the charity’s fleet with a top speed of up to 40 knots. It has been specially designed for use on the River Thames and uses water jets rather than conventional propellers, giving it excellent manoeuvrability in the rapidly moving river flow.

During her time at Gravesend, the Olive Laura Deare was launched 459 times and rescued 106 people, including saving 31 lives. A 78 year old man who had fallen overboard from a small boat at Thurrock was one of those saved by the lifeboat. The man was nearing the end of his ability to hold onto his boat and showing early signs of hypothermia. Showing the true capabilities of the lifeboat, the crew were there in six minutes and were able to get close enough to get alongside the casualty and get him into the lifeboat and safely to shore. The lifeboat then went back to recover the man’s boat.

Julie James, RNLI Heritage Manager, said: ‘We are delighted to have accepted E-002 Olive Laura Deare into the Historic Collections and to have recently placed her on display in the Lifeboat Gallery at Chatham. During her 10 years of operational service, E-002 launched 660 times, rescued 337 people and saved 43 lives. She is an exciting and unique addition to our lifeboat collection.’

The Olive Laura Deare and her successor Olive Laura Deare II were funded by a generous bequest from the late Mrs Olive Deare. She lived in Kent all her life and her grandparents had fishing boats that operated from Gravesend. Olive Laura Deare II is a B class Atlantic inshore lifeboat and replaced the E class at Gravesend in 2009. She suits the station’s needs as it is close to the coast as well as on the river.
Notes to editors

RNLI media contacts
For more information please telephone Kirsti Pawlowski, RNLI Public Relations Officer on 01202 663510 or kirsti_pawlowski@rnli.org.uk. Alternatively contact the RNLI Press Office on 01202 336789 or pressoffice@rnli.org.uk.

Byline: At the age of 11, E class Olive Laura Deare will be the youngest lifeboat to move into the Chatham Historic Dockyard. She will join many of the RNLI’s older generation of lifeboat in the exhibition as well as a wider collection of boats and ships.
Page Content:

The RNLI first introduced lifeboats on the Thames in 2002 after the investigation into the Marchoness disaster of 1989 identified that a rescue service on the river was needed. After that accident, in which a pleasure boat collided with a barge on the river leaving 51 people dead, the charity stepped in to provide its lifesaving experience and technology.

Four lifeboat stations were opened on the Thames on 20 January 2002 to provide lifeboat cover for the capital’s river; at Teddington, Chiswick, Tower and Gravesend.

Three of the lifeboat stations, Gravesend, Chiswick and Tower, were allocated the specially designed E class lifeboat. This class of lifeboat is the fastest lifeboat in the charity’s fleet with a top speed of up to 40 knots. It has been specially designed for use on the River Thames and uses water jets rather than conventional propellers, giving it excellent manoeuvrability in the rapidly moving river flow.

During her time at Gravesend, the Olive Laura Deare was launched 459 times and rescued 106 people, including saving 31 lives. A 78 year old man who had fallen overboard from a small boat at Thurrock was one of those saved by the lifeboat. The man was nearing the end of his ability to hold onto his boat and showing early signs of hypothermia. Showing the true capabilities of the lifeboat, the crew were there in six minutes and were able to get close enough to get alongside the casualty and get him into the lifeboat and safely to shore. The lifeboat then went back to recover the man’s boat.

Julie James, RNLI Heritage Manager, said: ‘We are delighted to have accepted E-002 Olive Laura Deare into the Historic Collections and to have recently placed her on display in the Lifeboat Gallery at Chatham. During her 10 years of operational service, E-002 launched 660 times, rescued 337 people and saved 43 lives. She is an exciting and unique addition to our lifeboat collection.'

The Olive Laura Deare and her successor Olive Laura Deare II were funded by a generous bequest from the late Mrs Olive Deare. She lived in Kent all her life and her grandparents had fishing boats that operated from Gravesend. Olive Laura Deare II is a B class Atlantic inshore lifeboat and replaced the E class at Gravesend in 2009. She suits the station’s needs as it is close to the coast as well as on the river.
Notes to editors

RNLI media contacts
For more information please telephone Kirsti Pawlowski, RNLI Public Relations Officer on 01202 663510 or kirsti_pawlowski@rnli.org.uk. Alternatively contact the RNLI Press Office on 01202 336789 or pressoffice@rnli.org.uk.