Buoyant Sheringham lifeboat branch says thanks to its crews

An active year of life-saving and fund-raising was reported at the annual meeting of the Sheringham RNLI branch.

Treasurer Mick Holford said the continued plight of the UK economy had, as predicted, made it hard to replicate last year's record return.

But public generosity mainly through collection boxes saw �35,200 sent to the RNLI headquarters, as the station consistently punched above its weight.

Lifeboat operations manager Brian Farrow reported that between April 2011 and April 2012, the Sheringham Lifeboat was tasked to launch 13 times, with a number of notable services including one on September 30 when four people were rescued from a sinking inflatable.

The station had a complement of 36 crew members including five helmsmen, five crewmen, eight trainee crewmen, four tractor drivers including one trainee and four shore helpers, many of whom had upgraded their skills during the year.

The three deputy launching authorities also had additional roles; with David Mann as station officer, Trevor Holsey as operations team chairman and Clive Rayment as training co-ordinator. Steve Roberts had been appointed tractor unit team leader and mechanic.

The Oddfellows lifeboat and carriage had both been for refits

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Chairman Philip Hawes praised the work of the crew led by senior helmsman Tony Webster, and said that although the last review showed the station was in a very healthy state the group remained focused on improvement.

Key points for the future included increased visibility and communication, continued attention to detail and welfare of personnel, team retention and recruitment and continued fund-raising.

Guest speaker at the meeting was Judith Duncan, RNLI eastern region youth education officer.

Recognition was given to a range of branch and station members:

Clive Rayment (DLA, former senior helmsman and holder of the RNLI Bronze Medal) - inscribed statuette of a lifeboatman.

Billy White (retired tractor driver) - bar to his long service badge.

Anne Little (volunteer manageress of the Sheringham Lifeboat Shop) - a silver badge.

Rita Smith (retired after 23 years as collection box organiser) – certificate of thanks from the RNLI

Ian and Pat Pearce (former press officer, ex-chairman of the guild and charity event organisers) – certificate of thanks from the chairman of the RNLI and a cut-glass inscribed fruit bowl from the Sheringham branch.

Nine volunteer shop helpers; Mrs Barber, Mrs Brayne, Mrs Gould, Mrs Hands, Mrs Large, Mrs Moulton, Mrs Nunn Mrs Seago and Mrs Shackelford will be awarded by RNLI certificates of appreciation

? Anyone wanting to join the crew and volunteers, or to be alerted to Sheringham lifeboat launches to leave their emails at the High Street shop or boathouse shop.

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