RNLI-announces-changes-to-lifeboat-stations-in-Scottish-Borders-and-Northumberla

Byline: The RNLI today announced changes to four lifeboat stations in the north east of England and Scottish Borders following an extensive review of the area to ensure the charity continues to provide the most effective lifesaving service to the public.
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Under proposals approved by the charity’s trustees, an inshore lifeboat will be added this year to Eyemouth in Scotland and the lifeboat station at neighbouring St Abbs will be closed.

In Northumberland the RNLI has plans to put new state-of-the-art Shannon class lifeboats at Seahouses and Amble over the next three years as part of the fleet’s modernisation programme. This means that the older 16 knot Mersey class all-weather lifeboat at Berwick-upon-Tweed will not need to be replaced at the end of its operational life in 2018. Further down the coast, a second, faster inshore lifeboat will be added to Blyth.

The RNLI continually reviews its lifesaving services around the coasts of the UK and Ireland. This process ensures the right lifeboats are stationed at the right locations to meet local needs and changing patterns of sea use while making the best use of the public donations on which the charity relies.

In the last 20 years, the RNLI has opened eight lifeboat stations and closed three. In that time the charity, founded on lifeboats, has evolved and operates beach lifeguards, flood rescue teams, and is increasing its prevention, coastal safety, education and international activities.

‘Our charity’s priority is to save lives at sea and by conducting regular reviews of lifeboat cover around our coastline, we can ensure we provide the best possible search and rescue service while making the most appropriate use of our supporters’ donations,’ said George Rawlinson, RNLI Operations Director.

The region will continue to be well covered by all-weather lifeboats following the removal of Berwick’s Mersey class lifeboat at the end of its operational life. Cover will be provided by new 25 knot all-weather lifeboats at Amble and Seahouses which we plan to have in place by 2018, and a 25 knot Trent class all-weather lifeboat already based at Eyemouth. These three all-weather lifeboats will be complemented by five inshore lifeboats at Eyemouth, Berwick, Seahouses, Craster and Amble.

 ‘The traditional pattern of sea use has changed greatly over the years. Commercial fishing has declined in many areas and leisure activities are on the rise. Taking advantage of the greater speed and capabilities of modern RNLI lifeboats, we continuously adapt our lifesaving service to meet current and future requirements and ensure public safety is not put at risk or compromised’, Mr Rawlinson said.

St Abbs lifeboat station is expected to close shortly. The review and research showed that Eyemouth, which is only two miles away, can safely cover the area with the addition of a new D class lifeboat, well suited to close inshore work. The St Abbs lifeboat Dorothy and Katherine Barr II, an Atlantic 75 built in 2002, will continue in service for the remainder of its operational life in the RNLI’s relief fleet, which backs up lifeboat stations across the UK and Ireland.

‘The RNLI does not take lightly any decision to close a lifeboat station – such changes are only made after extensive operational research and painstaking consideration. But we understand that this will be disappointing for our crew, supporters and the community at St Abbs. The lifeboat station has served the RNLI proudly for over a hundred years, saved 226 lives and rescued many more in that time. On behalf of everyone at the RNLI I would like to thank the volunteers for their dedication and commitment to saving lives at sea,’ said Mr Rawlinson.

At Berwick, the all-weather Mersey class lifeboat, which will soon come to the end of its operational life, will be removed in 2018 once new, faster Shannon class lifeboats have been stationed along the coast at Seahouses and Amble. The RNLI will also consider whether to place an additional Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat at Berwick in addition to the station’s existing D class lifeboat.

At Blyth, an Atlantic 85 lifeboat will be placed on a two-year trial to operate alongside the lifeboat station’s current D class lifeboat. Blyth, with its deep-water harbour, is well located to meet an expected increase in demand from sports, recreational and leisure marine users in that area. Also, the development of the waterfront and harbour area at Blyth may generate additional beach and coastal incidents. The wider impact of these changes on lifesaving provision on this area will be reviewed at the end of the trial in 2017.
‘The RNLI has evolved continually over its 191 year history to ensure that public safety is at the forefront of everything we do. These latest changes are part of our charity’s commitment to save lives at sea,’ added Mr Rawlinson.

RNLI media contacts
For more information or to arrange interviews please contact:
Scotland
Henry Weaver, Press Officer, Scotland , 07771 943026 henry_weaver@rnli.org.uk
Isla Reynolds, Newsdesk and PR manager, 07899 076224 isla_reynolds@rnli.org.uk

North of England
Clare Hopps, Press Officer, North, 07824 518641 clare_hopps@rnli.org.uk
Kirsti Pawlowski, Public Relations Officer, 07747 768799 Kirsti_pawlowski@rnli.org.uk

Alternatively contact RNLI Public Relations in Poole on 01202 336789 or pressoffice@rnli.org.uk

Notes to editors

• In the last 20 years, the RNLI has opened eight lifeboat stations (Lough Derg, Dart, Loch Ness, Cowes, Leverburgh, Lough Ree, Union Hall and Stonehaven) and closed three (Teesmouth, South Broads, and Atlantic College)
• Since it was founded, St Abbs lifeboat station crews have saved 226 people, rescued 386 and launched 424 times.
Berwick-upon-Tweed lifeboat station
• In 2014, Berwick all-weather lifeboat launched 4 times, rescuing 3 people
• In the 10 years from 2005 to 2014, the lifeboat was launched a total of 74 times and assisted 49 people.
Blyth lifeboat station
Before the Atlantic 85 trial begins, Blyth RNLI volunteers will spend two months training on the vessel before it becomes an operational lifeboat. It will then operate alongside Blyth’s D class inshore lifeboat for two years, during which time RNLI divisional staff will monitor its operational performance and activity. They will also look at factors including launch and recovery arrangements, crewing and the effect on neighbouring lifeboat stations before a decision is made on whether it will be established as a permanent station lifeboat.
• In 2014, Blyth inshore lifeboat launched 32 times, rescuing 17 people
• In the 10 years from 2005-2014, Blyth RNLI launched 198 times and assisted 164 people.
Shannon class all-weather lifeboat
With a top speed of 25 knots, the Shannon is 50 per cent faster than the Mersey class lifeboat and is the first modern all-weather lifeboat propelled by waterjets instead of propellers, making it the most agile and manoeuvrable all-weather lifeboat in the fleet.
Atlantic 85 B class inshore lifeboat
The Atlantic 85 is the fastest sea-going RNLI lifeboat and the first RNLI inshore lifeboat to have radar, which means it can operate more effectively in reduced visibility. It is also bigger than its predecessor, with room for a fourth crew member as well as more space for casualties. It can operate in relatively shallow water and is highly manoeuvrable.

ENDS

Byline: The RNLI today announced changes to four lifeboat stations in the north east of England and Scottish Borders following an extensive review of the area to ensure the charity continues to provide the most effective lifesaving service to the public.
Page Content:

Under proposals approved by the charity’s trustees, an inshore lifeboat will be added this year to Eyemouth in Scotland and the lifeboat station at neighbouring St Abbs will be closed.


In Northumberland the RNLI has plans to put new state-of-the-art Shannon class lifeboats at Seahouses and Amble over the next three years as part of the fleet’s modernisation programme. This means that the older 16 knot Mersey class all-weather lifeboat at Berwick-upon-Tweed will not need to be replaced at the end of its operational life in 2018. Further down the coast, a second, faster inshore lifeboat will be added to Blyth.

The RNLI continually reviews its lifesaving services around the coasts of the UK and Ireland. This process ensures the right lifeboats are stationed at the right locations to meet local needs and changing patterns of sea use while making the best use of the public donations on which the charity relies.


In the last 20 years, the RNLI has opened eight lifeboat stations and closed three. In that time the charity, founded on lifeboats, has evolved and operates beach lifeguards, flood rescue teams, and is increasing its prevention, coastal safety, education and international activities.


‘Our charity’s priority is to save lives at sea and by conducting regular reviews of lifeboat cover around our coastline, we can ensure we provide the best possible search and rescue service while making the most appropriate use of our supporters’ donations,’ said George Rawlinson, RNLI Operations Director.


The region will continue to be well covered by all-weather lifeboats following the removal of Berwick’s Mersey class lifeboat at the end of its operational life. Cover will be provided by new 25 knot all-weather lifeboats at Amble and Seahouses which we plan to have in place by 2018, and a 25 knot Trent class all-weather lifeboat already based at Eyemouth. These three all-weather lifeboats will be complemented by five inshore lifeboats at Eyemouth, Berwick, Seahouses, Craster and Amble.


 ‘The traditional pattern of sea use has changed greatly over the years. Commercial fishing has declined in many areas and leisure activities are on the rise. Taking advantage of the greater speed and capabilities of modern RNLI lifeboats, we continuously adapt our lifesaving service to meet current and future requirements and ensure public safety is not put at risk or compromised’, Mr Rawlinson said.

St Abbs lifeboat station is expected to close shortly. The review and research showed that Eyemouth, which is only two miles away, can safely cover the area with the addition of a new D class lifeboat, well suited to close inshore work. The St Abbs lifeboat Dorothy and Katherine Barr II, an Atlantic 75 built in 2002, will continue in service for the remainder of its operational life in the RNLI’s relief fleet, which backs up lifeboat stations across the UK and Ireland.


‘The RNLI does not take lightly any decision to close a lifeboat station – such changes are only made after extensive operational research and painstaking consideration. But we understand that this will be disappointing for our crew, supporters and the community at St Abbs. The lifeboat station has served the RNLI proudly for over a hundred years, saved 226 lives and rescued many more in that time. On behalf of everyone at the RNLI I would like to thank the volunteers for their dedication and commitment to saving lives at sea,’ said Mr Rawlinson.


At Berwick, the all-weather Mersey class lifeboat, which will soon come to the end of its operational life, will be removed in 2018 once new, faster Shannon class lifeboats have been stationed along the coast at Seahouses and Amble. The RNLI will also consider whether to place an additional Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat at Berwick in addition to the station’s existing D class lifeboat.


At Blyth, an Atlantic 85 lifeboat will be placed on a two-year trial to operate alongside the lifeboat station’s current D class lifeboat. Blyth, with its deep-water harbour, is well located to meet an expected increase in demand from sports, recreational and leisure marine users in that area. Also, the development of the waterfront and harbour area at Blyth may generate additional beach and coastal incidents. The wider impact of these changes on lifesaving provision on this area will be reviewed at the end of the trial in 2017.
‘The RNLI has evolved continually over its 191 year history to ensure that public safety is at the forefront of everything we do. These latest changes are part of our charity’s commitment to save lives at sea,’ added Mr Rawlinson.

RNLI media contacts
For more information or to arrange interviews please contact:
Scotland
Henry Weaver, Press Officer, Scotland , 07771 943026 henry_weaver@rnli.org.uk
Isla Reynolds, Newsdesk and PR manager, 07899 076224 isla_reynolds@rnli.org.uk

North of England
Clare Hopps, Press Officer, North, 07824 518641 clare_hopps@rnli.org.uk
Kirsti Pawlowski, Public Relations Officer, 07747 768799 Kirsti_pawlowski@rnli.org.uk

Alternatively contact RNLI Public Relations in Poole on 01202 336789 or pressoffice@rnli.org.uk

Notes to editors


• In the last 20 years, the RNLI has opened eight lifeboat stations (Lough Derg, Dart, Loch Ness, Cowes, Leverburgh, Lough Ree, Union Hall and Stonehaven) and closed three (Teesmouth, South Broads, and Atlantic College)
• Since it was founded, St Abbs lifeboat station crews have saved 226 people, rescued 386 and launched 424 times.
Berwick-upon-Tweed lifeboat station
• In 2014, Berwick all-weather lifeboat launched 4 times, rescuing 3 people
• In the 10 years from 2005 to 2014, the lifeboat was launched a total of 74 times and assisted 49 people.
Blyth lifeboat station
Before the Atlantic 85 trial begins, Blyth RNLI volunteers will spend two months training on the vessel before it becomes an operational lifeboat. It will then operate alongside Blyth’s D class inshore lifeboat for two years, during which time RNLI divisional staff will monitor its operational performance and activity. They will also look at factors including launch and recovery arrangements, crewing and the effect on neighbouring lifeboat stations before a decision is made on whether it will be established as a permanent station lifeboat.
• In 2014, Blyth inshore lifeboat launched 32 times, rescuing 17 people
• In the 10 years from 2005-2014, Blyth RNLI launched 198 times and assisted 164 people.
Shannon class all-weather lifeboat
With a top speed of 25 knots, the Shannon is 50 per cent faster than the Mersey class lifeboat and is the first modern all-weather lifeboat propelled by waterjets instead of propellers, making it the most agile and manoeuvrable all-weather lifeboat in the fleet.
Atlantic 85 B class inshore lifeboat
The Atlantic 85 is the fastest sea-going RNLI lifeboat and the first RNLI inshore lifeboat to have radar, which means it can operate more effectively in reduced visibility. It is also bigger than its predecessor, with room for a fourth crew member as well as more space for casualties. It can operate in relatively shallow water and is highly manoeuvrable.


ENDS