October 31 2014 Latest news:
Sunday, July 27, 2014
It was the last appearance for the Spirit of Lowestoft all-weather lifeboat at the town’s annual lifeboat open day today.
A steady stream of people visited the RNLI lifeboat station on the South Pier where they were able to meet some of the volunteer crew, look around the Spirit of Lowestoft, enjoy homemade refreshments and see photos and videos of the lifeboat in action.
Visitors were also treated to a mock rescue, with both the Lowestoft lifeboat and the lifeboat from Gorleston demonstrating how they would rescue people stranded in the sea. The rescue was followed by a blessing of the lifeboat service at the station, led by port missioner Tim Jenkins and the Salvation Army.
Paul Carter, lifeboat operations manager at Lowestoft, said: “The day is all about fundraising and raising awareness of what we do.
“It gives people the opportunity to have a look around the lifeboat and watch the crew in action.”
The Spirit of Lowestoft lifeboat made its last open day appearance before it is replaced in September by a new lifeboat which will be the first RNLI boat of its kind in East Anglia.
Mick Howes, Lowestoft lifeboat press officer, said: “The boat is 27 years-old-and the life expectancy of a lifeboat is about 25 years, so there has been a lot of advances in lifeboat technology since then.
“The lifeboat we have got at the moment is propeller driven but the new lifeboat will be water jet driven which will make it easier to manoeuvre and will be much faster.”
The Spirit of Lowestoft will be sent down to the RNLI station in Poole where it will go into the reserve fleet.
Mr Carter said: “It will be sad to see her go because she has been here 27 years, but it is good to know she is not going to be disposed off just yet. Because she has been well looked after and is in such a good condition she’s going to be used as a lifeboat for the next four or five years.”
• Don’t miss tomorrow’s EDP for a 12-page picture special, featuring the best of Norfolk and north Suffolk’s weekend events.