Burnham-on-Sea RNLI press releases and other news

Burnham-on-Sea RNLI crew member shows a steady pair of hands delivering his baby. Dec 2014
 26Mrs Marion Denham presented a cheque for £5000 in memory of her sister Mrs Peggy Dunn. Dec 2014
 25 New Deputy Launch Authority (DLA) announced. Dec 2014
 24 Duke of Edinburgh student first trip on lifeboat Dec 2014
 23 December assessment results
 Dec 2014
 22 Volunteer Assessments
 Nov 2014
 21 Last Burnham-on-Sea RNLI 2014 car wash nets £700, with 87 cars cleaned.
 Nov. 2014
 20The successful RNLI play 'Out of The Mist' comes to Burnham-on-Sea's Princess Theatre and Arts centre.  Sep. 2014
Burnham-on-Sea RNLI lifeboats launched on Friday 29 August at 10.45 am, to assist grounded yacht.Aug. 2014
 Both Burnham lifeboats launch to assist a broken down boat at anchorAug. 2014
 17Busy weekend as Burnham-on-Sea RNLI volunteers trial new bog matsAug. 2014
 16 Lifeboat pull through town for open day
Jul 2014
 15RNLI to improve beach access adjacent to Burnham-
on-Sea Jetty starting 11 August
Aug. 2014
14Lifeboat launched to assist broken down powerboatJuly 2014
13PR Training Exercise for Triathalon (5.30 am launch)
July 2014
Our latest visitors were all the way from Chernobyl.
July 2014
11Excitement grows as Burnham-on-Sea RNLI launches its first annual lifeboat dayJuly 2014
10Moat Farm school visit
July 2014
 9Burnham-on-Sea crew and RNLI supporters take the H2Only challengeJune 2014
Both Burnham-on-Sea RNLI lifeboats launched to assist a stranded jet skier.
June 2014
Shapwick School visit Burnham-on-Sea RNLI Lifeboat Station and present a cheque for £1,002
May 2014
Burnham-on-Sea RNLI Car wash raises £350 on a rainy and windy day
May 2014
Burnham-on-Sea RNLI fund-raisers recognised at open supporters meeting, and lifeboat shop re-opens in time for Easter
April 2014
 4Focus school visit brings dividends to Burnham-on-Sea RNLI Lifeboat StationMarch 2014

Two Burnham-on-Sea Lifeboat crew receive personal letters of commendation from RNLI Chief Executive Paul Boissier

Feb. 2014
Burnham-on-Sea RNLI Volunteers raise £695 with their SOS day car wash.
Feb. 2014
New hands on the helm at Burnham-on-Sea RNLI Lifeboat Station.
December 2013     
 Burnham-on-Sea RNLI crew member shows a steady pair of hands delivering his baby.

Matt Edwards remained calm and in control when he unexpectedly had to deliver his daughter on Tuesday 9 December.

Matt's partner Abbey experienced some pains 4 days before their baby was due. As a first time father, Matt sought advice and was advised to call for an ambulance. His daughter however had other ideas, and Matt found himself delivering her at home; all within 10 minutes. Matt said tongue in cheek; 'As a wicket keeper I have a good pair of hands.'

As an RNLI volunteer crew member Matt is trained to cope with pressure situations but midwifery skills are not part of the training. Everyone at station is pleased that things went smoothly and are not surprised that Matt coped so well.

In fact, this week he has been given the lifeboat operations manager's (LOM) award. The person who is given this award is chosen by the LOM for their outstanding work over the past year.

Lifeboat operations manager, Matt Davies says; 'I chose Matthew for this award as he is an excellent hard working member of the lifeboat crew at Burnham. He has made huge strides in the 3 years since he joined us having no sea going experience at all and has recently passed out as a fully competent crew member having completed all his probationary training units. He has also agreed to move on to become a probationary helmsman showing his future commitment to the RNLI.'

We would like to take this opportunity to wish Matt, his family and all our supporters a merry Christmas & happy New Year.

 Burnham-on-Sea lifeboat station was presented with a donation this week.
Mrs Marion Denham presented a cheque for £5000 in memory of her sister Mrs
Peggy Dunn.

Deputy Launch Authority, Phil Counsell accepted this very generous donation on
behalf of the station.
 New Deputy Launch Authority (DLA) announced.

Lyndon Baker has now been appointed as a DLA. His previous role of Lifeboat
Training Coordinator (LTC) will now be filled by Ashley Chappell.

Our thanks go to Lyndon for all he has done so far and we wish them both well in
their new roles.


Duke of Edinburgh students first trip on lifeboat.

A first trip afloat on the lifeboats was a surprise wake up call for Duke of Edinburgh student Timon Massarella. As part of his volunteer award Timon went afloat with crew on a regular Sunday training exercise.

Training Coordinator Lyndon Baker said 'Timon was involved in all aspects of the training which gave him a first hand and realistic insight into the skills of our volunteer lifeboat crew.'

Timon said 'It was amazing and I am going to join a soon as I am old enough!' His mother Vashti who is one of our crew is very proud. And is looking forward to the 2nd generation of her family joining her on the boat in the future.

Our divisional operations manager Nigel Jones met another of our DofE students when he was here last week. He said 'It is a great opportunity for younger members of the community to get involved at an early stage with the lifesaving charities excellent work. This may well lead to them taking an active part in the station life in the future. This is a real advantage to the station who have potential ready made recruits. And we hope the DofE candidates will spread the word amongst their peers as to the work our volunteers do, saving lives at sea.'
 December assessment results.

Following the assessors visit on 3rd December we are pleased to announce the following:

5 of our volunteers have respectively completed their training plans for - D class helm, D class crew, bendy driver & 2 shore crew.

2 crew completed further units on the B class, and are close to completing these training plans.
2 of our volunteers will be starting their D helm training in the new year.

And last but not least our newest shore crew volunteer has completed his first unit.

Well done to them and thanks to all the other volunteers who assisted during the assessments. As always we really appreciate the time that they give up, and the support of their friends and family.
  More assessments passed and training plans completed.

Well done to our 2 shore crew who passed their assessments last week which means they have now completed their training plans.

2 members of the shore crew have agreed to take on driver training, this will improve our day duty driver coverage.They will now start the driver training plan. This will involve both hands on training at the station and going away for further tuition. Which of course means more time away from their families.

The volunteers show great team work in working together to get each other through the assessments. And we can not do either our training or shouts without the support of our families and your generous donations.
  Last Burnham-on-Sea RNLI 2014 car wash nets £700, with 87 cars cleaned.

Volunteer crew members from the boat and shore crew teams worked hard during Saturday's event, with eighty seven vehicles leaving the lifeboat station with the usual pristine finish. Around £680 was raised, with a personal donation making up the amount to the whole £700. Volunteers are valiantly looking forward to further car wash events during 2015.

Lifeboat Operations Manager Matt Davies said; 'A big thanks to all those that helped out at today's car wash and an extra special thanks to those who stayed all day, we can't do it without you guys and gals !!!'

Senior helmsman Nick Edrich remarked: 'Totting up the amount raised by the crew, from the previous three car washes, and one open day, the total raised by the shore and boat crew volunteers for this year has reached £3,000. A brilliant result!'

The successful RNLI play 'Out of The Mist' comes to Burnham-on-Sea's Princess Theatre and Arts centre.

'Now hear ye all this, good men of Bamburgh,' shouted the cloaked man over the rumble of storm thunder. The audience peered into the darkness. What came next is history in the making: he announced plans for a local lifesaving service. It was the opening chapter of a story that ends with the RNLI as we know it today. Two hours later, after an emotional journey, the audience filed out of the hall into the village.

This wasn't 18th century Bamburgh in Northumberland but 21st century Cranham, a tiny community in Gloucestershire. The play they had just seen - Out of the Mist - brought key moments in the RNLI's history to the stage: the first days of life-boating, the formation of the RNLI and the deeds of famous rescuers. Since then the play has become a full theatre production, having been played out with great success, by Jenny Wren Productions on the stage of the award winning Parabola Arts Centre, Cheltenham.

Now the play is being brought to you by the Princess Theatre group of Burnham-on-Sea. The scenes will played out on the Princess stage, Friday 7 November, starting at 6.00 pm.

Featuring some local celebrities in cameo roles, and several of the scenes specially adapted locally by the playwright Alan Tyson, be prepared for a rollercoaster of emotion, as members of BOSH Youth Theatre and The Princess Theatre Company, assisted by RNLI volunteers, bring the story to Burnham-on-Sea.

TICKETS £10/£8 concessions/£5 child, are available from The Princess Theatre and the RNLI lifeboat shop, Pier Street, BOS. (all proceeds to RNLI)

Lifeboat Press Officer Mike Lang says; 'This is a terrific opportunity to see an original play about the RNLI story. Some of the scenes will make you laugh, and some are sad, but the situations are very real, being based on historic facts.'
 Burnham-on-Sea RNLI lifeboats launched on Friday 29 August at 10.45 am, to assist grounded yacht.

The 22ft yacht was proceeding up the River Parrett, on a falling tide, towards Combwich Marina when it ran aground. Swansea Coastguard being concerned for the safety of the two man crew, one of whom was aged 81 years, called for RNLI assistance.

D class lifeboat Puffin was first to reach the craft, and the volunteer lifeboat crew, perceiving the craft was well and truly grounded on the muddy riverbank, with no hope of recovery on that tide, beached and manoeuvred close to the casualty vessel. The yacht's crew, after ensuring the vessel was securely anchored, were taken on board Puffin. Atlantic 75 lifeboat Staines Whitfield had by then arrived on the scene, and Puffin was pulled back down the mud bank.

The yacht's crew were landed at Combwich Marina, and both lifeboats returned to the town jetty for recovery and wash down by the lifeboat station shore team.

Lifeboat Helmsman Kevin Barber said; 'The Yacht was well and truly aground at a bend in the river. We were able to rescue the gentlemen and transfer them safely to shore.'

 Staines Whitfield launching to assist.


 Both Burnham lifeboats launch to assist a broken down boat at anchor

Saturday 23 August was the start of a family holiday for Andy and Dave who were taking their boat from Somerset down to Watermouth Cove, Devon, but due to mechanical problems they did not complete this journey. The lifeboats launched just after 9am.

Dave and Andy had intended to meet up with the rest of their families who were travelling to Devon by road. However they were stopped when they had a technical problem with the boat. Although they were initially able to limp on, they were very aware of the local conditions and outgoing tide and therefore decided to contact the Coastguard. Burnham's lifeboats Puffin and Staines Whitfield were launched to offer assistance. It was decided that the best course of action was to bring the vessel back to Burnham under tow, where their partners (having left the children with their grandparents) could come to meet them.


They returned to Burnham later that afternoon when the tide was higher to remove their boat from the beach. After which they were able to continue with their interrupted holiday plans and a first birthday party for one of the children.

Casualty Dave says; 'Thank you very much, most professional service I have ever seen. I was very impressed with them on the radio.'

Casualty Andy added; 'Very helpful and professional. They could not do enough for us.'

Deputy launch authority Dave Parsons says; 'It was the first time that we used the new bog mats on a shout. They saved time in launching and were put to good use. Extremely useful.'

Most of the crew were enjoying a slow start to the bank holiday weekend when their pagers went just before 9am. For volunteer Lesley it was her first shout as crew. She was just proceeding up the stairs to shower in her PJs when the pager went. She immediately got dressed and raced out the house.

Another volunteer in his PJs had just served his guests breakfast and was going to get his children up. Unlike Lesley, he came to the station in his PJs. Other volunteers were just returning with warm pastries from the bakers; were getting an early start down the allotment; were picking up their daily paper; sitting down to what would be a half-eaten bowl of sugar puffs. They dropped everything to get to the lifeboat station, leaving their, as always supportive partners and families behind.


  Busy weekend as Burnham-on-Sea RNLI volunteers trial new bog mats.

The volunteers at Burnham had a busy weekend. As well as their usual training session on Sunday (August 17) they also trialled the newly laid bog mats on Saturday. They even found time to present a prize for a photo competition run on their open day.

The bog mats are made from hardwood timber planks tied together to form individual mats, and then linked to form a continuous platform. The mats are simply laid onto the surface of the beach and weighted down. The hardwood surface at Burnham is 5 meters wide and 50 meters long, and distributes the weight of our launching carriage and specialised tractor. This now enables us to access the sea at any state of the tide giving us 24 hour capability 7 days a week 365 days of the year. It took up to 8 minutes to travel to our previous low water site located at the Allendale Road end of the esplanade and every second counts when an emergency call comes in. The mats prevent the tractors from getting bogged down and covered in mud so the crews spend less time washing down and more time training.

Volunteer lifeboat operations manager Matt Davies says; 'We still have further trails to carry out over the forth coming months with the bigger tractor unit so please feel free to approach any of the crew with any questions you may have.'

Volunteer lifeboat training co-ordinator and driver Lyndon Baker says; 'In addition to the enhanced launch capability, the mats improve safety by providing firm and consistent terrain to drive upon. This is important and very reassuring to the shore crew and especially to the tractor driver in poor weather, when speed is of the essence and you can't see where you're going!'

The volunteers were back on more familiar territory for their Sunday training session. On their return they took some time to present a flat screen Misspelled WordTV to the winner of the photo competition held on their recent open day.

Winner Becky Hewlitt a local RNLI supporter says; 'Hurray, I never win anything, the boys will be pleased. It was great to see the volunteers pulling the lifeboat round town.'

Boat crew signaling to driver                                        Becky, Charlie & Fred receiving their prize

 Volunteers doing their 'lifeboat pull' through town on the open day
  Burnham-on-Sea RNLI 2014 lifeboat open day
 Many thanks to everyone who came to our first annual lifeabot open day and made it such a success.

 Thanks to too all our volunteers for once again giving up their time. It was good to see the families there enjoying themselves too.

The crew had such a good time with the lifeboat pull through town they did it twice!


RNLI to improve beach access adjacent to Burnham-on-Sea Jetty starting 11 August

The RNLI has commenced an emergency project to lay some 50 metres of bog mats over the lower section of their launch route and this work will be carried out on the low tides during week commencing 11th August.

Bog mats are made from hardwood timber planks tied together to form individual mats, and then linked to form a continuous platform over quite long lengths. Bog mats are often used for temporary road surfacing on construction projects where the ground conditions cannot safely support the weight of vehicles. The mats aresimply laid onto the surface of the beach and weighted down. As the bog mats are not permanently fixed, they can be removed at any time.

Burnham-on-Sea Volunteer Lifeboats Press Officer Mike Lang says; 'This project has been planned for some time, and all necessary permits/consultations are in place. Being able to launch 24/7 is a high priority for us.'



Burnham-on-Sea RNLI lifeboat launched to assist 3 people in a marooned powerboat

The volunteer crew were paged at 7.55pm on Thursday evening (24 July) to a broken down powerboat with three people aboard.

RNLI lifeboat Staines Whitfield was launched to go to the assistance of the broken down boat. This was the maiden voyage (in this boat) for the owner Ian Dowden and his two friends.

Ian has over four years experience on the water around Burnham, and was aware that the tide was going out. He therefore appreciated the extra difficulties this may cause in recovering the boat, and did not hesitate to call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

The powerboat with its passengers was quickly reached by the lifeboat and brought to shore. It was decided that the best way to get the powerboat recovered was via the jetty. Due to the falling tide and to save time the shore crew brought the powerboat trailer from the nearby car park. Again recognising the difficulties two boat crew had kitted themselves up in order to assist with the recovery of the boat.

Lifeboat Operations Manager Matt Davies said: 'Due to good conditions we were able to get to their assistance quickly and bring them safely back to shore. They did exactly the right thing by calling 999.'

Owner Ian Dowden said: 'It is slightly embarrassing having to call them on the maiden voyage. I would like to pass on my thanks to the lifeboat crew for everything that they did. This is not quite what I had in mind to celebrate my birthday today.'

If you want to know more about the charity or exactly what goes on at the lifeboat station then do please come and meet us at our station open day on Sunday 27 July

 Powerboat & passengers recovered to shore

 PR Training Exercise for Triathalon (5.30 am launch)

Thanks to the dedication of our volunteers both lifeboats were launched to set the course for the triathalon and stayed afloat in case of incident.

The first job was to inflate the markers for the course. The crew were then given a final briefing as to how the course would be laid out.  As you can see from the picture below there was not much room on the boats once the markers were loaded.

Both the lifeboats and the RNLI lifeguards were there to assist anyone in need. It was quite a choppy day which made it more of a challenge for the swimmers. While the shore crew were waiting for the boats to return they took the opportunity to practice their knots. Due to the rough weather it was decided that the boats would be recovered at the sailing club. The crew were happy to take advantage of the calmer waters while they waited for the recovery vehicles to come and collect them. As always when they returned to station all equipment and crew kit had to be washed down and made ready for the next time it is needed.


School children from Chernobyl visit our lifeboat station

Visitors from Chernobyl welcomed by Burnham's town crier. They learned about the RNLI and sea safety. They enjoyed trying on some of the equipment that the crew have to wear.




Thanks to Roger Burgess for these 2 photos. 

Excitement grows as Burnham-on-Sea RNLI launches its first annual lifeboat day

On Sunday 27 July lifeboat enthusiasts, supporters, and general members of the public are invited to join the volunteers at Burnham-on-Sea lifeboat station for their first annual lifeboat day.

The schedule for the day which runs from 10.00am until 4.00 pm, is expected to include demonstrations and displays (lifeboats, lifeguards and shore based), lifeboat pull, flood team display, tombola, raffle, cake sale, treasure hunt, Stormy Stan throwing game, 'Welly Wanging' (with genuine RNLI wellies), face-painting, plus the lifeboat shop will be open as usual.

Organiser crewmember Tim Walters says; 'Come along and enjoy the fun. Activities are still fluid at the moment, but up-to-date arrangements will be placed on our own station website: www.burnham-on-seaRNLI.org.uk.'

Lifeboat press Officer Mike Lang adds; 'We are still desperately short of a lifeboats visits officer, and this is a wonderful opportunity to see the lifeboat station and meet the crew, without any commitment.'

'Additionally, if members of the public wish to donate a raffle or tombola prize, they will be able to drop it into our lifeboat shop, at the station (Junction of Pier Street and Marine Drive), which is normally open Monday to Saturday between the hours of 10.00 am and 4.00 pm and Sunday 11 am till 3 pm.'

Programme for the days events:

10 am - Start

10:30 - "Shout" demonstration (D Class Only - Full Details to follow)

11:00 - Return D Class to Station

13:00 - Lifeboat / land rover Pull - From Burnham town Slip - Along Sea Front - And Down Through High-street - Back to Station (We Will Be Using the Flood Team 4x4 and boat for this) - please come and donate along the way

16:00 - Close of Open Day

During the whole day we have so far……

Online Photo competition - all photos taken on the day to be uploaded to our Facebook page for judging. (Last upload date 31st July) WINNING PRIZE OF A FLAT SCREEN TV!!!!!!!!

RNLI Flood Team LandRover, Arancia and Kit


Tombola/ Raffle

Stormy Stan Throwing Game

Home made Cake Sale and refreshments

Face 2 Face - join the RNLI supporters group

RNLI Beach Lifeguards

Face painting - TBC

"Out of the Mist" Play ticket sales for the princess theatre

Talks About Both lifeboats

Talks About Tractors & Shore Crew

Talks About and Demonstrate of all of our Kit

RNLI Shop will be open as Normal

Ice Cream Sales Man on a Bike

Great to welcome Moat Farm to our station today 7 July.

120 children, 4 teachers and 6 support staff from Moat Farm in the Midlands came to visit us to learn more about the RNLI and sea safety. Not even the rain could not dampen their spirits during their visit.




They were keen to try on the kit.


Pose for photos in the tractor wheel.

And had lots of questions about the boat.

Burnham-on-Sea crew and RNLI supporters take the H2Only challenge

The RNLI are running a fundraising campaign called H2Only, where the participants drink nothing but water for two weeks. Three of the Burnham-on-Sea volunteer crew have decided to take up this challenge, along with other supporters in the UK and Ireland.

Not only does the RNLI's demanding H2Only challenge test people's self-control it provides participants with the opportunity to have a post bank holiday detox - while raising vital funds for the charity that saves lives at sea.

The volunteer crew members Nick Edrich, Marc Smith and Tim Walters are now two days in to their challenge

Tim says; 'It will be a challenge saying farewell to fizzies and bye bye to his beer but the cause is worth it.'

Marc says; 'It is only day two and is not as easy as some may think. I am hoping to raise £275 which is the cost of a new lifejacket. There is still plenty of time to sponsor us.

Nick says; 'I am used to drinking a lot of water during the day. But my morning tea break is not the same, as the biscuits do not dunk so well in water.'

People in the local community are also getting behind the challenge. Becky Hewlitt a Burnham-on-Sea teacher says; 'I regularly see the lifeboats launch. As I am unable to volunteer at the station the least I can do is help by fundraising. Although it will be a tough challenge for me, it is nothing compared to what these volunteers do giving up their time to help others.'

If you wish to sponsor the crew or Becky you can do on the just giving website.







Volunteer crewman Marc Smith grabbing a glass of water before launching for a training exercise.                                                  


Both Burnham-on-Sea RNLI lifeboats launched to assist a stranded jet skier.

The volunteer crew were paged on Sunday 18 May at 12.45 pm, they were tasked to assist a jet skier who had become stranded on Stert Island.  The volunteers had already launched in the morning on a training exercise and would launch for a third time at 8 pm to recover the jet ski.

Lifeboat Puffin launched immediately and went directly to the casualty. Due to the low waters, lifeboat Staines-Whitfield used the alternate launch site and stood by to offer assistance if required. The RNLI volunteers worked with the Coastguard, who with the aid of Burnham Area Rescue Boat (BARB) hovercraft were able to make safe the jet ski on the island. It was decided that the jet ski would be recovered by the RNLI that evening when the tide was higher. This was done so that the ski itself did not become a hazard.

The owner of the jet ski said: 'I am very grateful to everyone that came to help. I had seen the RNLI training that morning and I apologise for interrupting their Sunday lunch and their evening too when they will be out again. I am very surprised to see that that the jetty does not go all the way to the water and there is nowhere stable for the lifeboats to launch.'

This was the first shout since Lifeboat Operation Manager Matt Davies was appointed.  Matt  said: 'Everything went well. We were glad to be working with the Coastguard and communication across the services was good. The RNLI shore works team are continuing to review the soft mud at our normal launch site.'

Crewman Stu who had gone to the aid of the casualty and showed him a safe path to the lifeboat said: ' A good outcome,  the casualty was recovered fit and well. It just shows that even experienced people can get caught out, but they did everything right.'


Shapwick School visit Burnham-on-Sea RNLI Lifeboat Station and present a cheque for £1,002.

Shapwick Year 10 students made a visit to Burnham on Sea RNLI station and the
Burnham Area Rescue Boat (BARB) facility after raising £1002 by doing a sponsored walk from Glastonbury Tor back to their school in Shapwick. These funds were given to the RNLI but BARB would welcome support from elsewhere.

This fundraising activity was organised by Mr Dan Burnett a teacher at this specialist school for Dyslexics.

The visit to the BARB & RNLI station was made doubly interesting and exciting by the fact that many of the lifeboat crew were there on hand to give students the low down on what actually happens both behind the scenes and on the front line when there is a 'Shout'.

Shapwick student were given opportunities to try on Rescue gear and sit in and
on the various RIBs and tractors that are used by the RNLI. All students really
appreciated the expert and friendly guidance that they were given.

Both the RNLI & BARB are in need of funds to keep their stations in a good state
of operation and are grateful to Shapwick Students & Mr Burnett for raising this

Lifeboat Operations Manager Matt Davies says; "Shapwick school have visited
us regularly over the years, and despite our present lack of a Lifeboats Visits Officer, the crew and fundraisers pulled together to make this a successful visit."

Lifeboats Press Officer Mike Lang adds; "We desperately need a visits officer, in
order to keep up with a busy school and education visits schedule. Burnham-on-Sea lifeboat station is ideally placed to accommodate this inittiative, and interested RNLI supporters should make themselves know at either they lifeboat shop, or one of our regular Wednesday evening sessions.


Burnham-on-Sea RNLI Car wash raises £350 on a rainy and windy day

Lifeboat crew are well used to water, and during Saturday's car wash worked diligently amongst the rain drops, to wash vehicles of all kinds to the usual pristine finish.  Using professional cleaning materials, backed up by years of experience ensured that customers went away satisfied, rewarding the fund-raising volunteer crew with over £350 in donations.

Lifeboat Operations Matt Davies said; "The Guys and gals in our crew worked extremely hard in less than ideal conditions and I also wish to thank the operators of the car wash next door for closing durin our fund-raising initiative."



Burnham-on-Sea RNLI fund-raisers recognised at open supporters meeting, and lifeboat shop re-opens in time for Easter

Supporters and fund-raisers gathered together at a special open meeting in Burnham's Community centre. 

During the meeting, Julie Sanby (RNLI Regional Retail Manager for Wales & Isle Of Man) talked about emerging retail strategy and a new improved catalogue of RNLI products.  Also talked about was the continuing need for a lifeboat visits and education officer to replace retiring Tony Deahl.  Plus, the Burnham lifeboat shop was now open with the new stock available. 

Julie Sanby said of the volunteers;  "You are a great team, and I have great pleasure in awarding these certificates of recognition.  Lifeboats are launched by the fund-raisers and supporters, because without them, there would be no RNLI"


Focus school visit brings dividends to Burnham-on-Sea RNLI Lifeboat Station

Pupils from Focus School (Gloucester Campus) paid a visit to Burnham lifeboat station.  Whilst there they learnt all about the lifeboats, the safety equipment and  hi-tech launch tractors, plus how the volunteer crew are alerted by pager in the event of a shout (or callout).  Boats are able to be on the water within ten minutes of the pagers are activated.

During the visit, the school presented the lifeboat station with a donation of £2,142, which had been raised from organising various cycle rides, car washing and a car boot sale at the school.  In return, the visiting RNLI visits team presented the school with a certificate of thanks

Teacher Miss Charlotte Davis thanked the station for the hospitality saying;  "We have supported the RNLI for a number of years, and consider it a most worthwhile charity."


Two Burnham-on-Sea Lifeboat crew receive personal letters of commendation from RNLI Chief Executive Paul Boissier

In an incident on 13 July 2013, Burnham-on-Sea RNLI D class lifeboat Puffin was paged to assist two girls, who were desperately clinging to chains holding up a navigational post, at the end of Burnham-on-Sea Jetty.  Both girls were in imminent danger of being swept upstream by the incoming 5 knot tide. 

Realising the urgency of the situation, helmsman Nick Edrich had left the station on foot, arriving as one of the girls released her grip on the chains.  Nick sprinted the last 150 yards to the water's edge wearing a dry-suit and lifejacket,  and entered the water, swimming to the girl before being assisted by a coastguard rescue team member who had thrown a safety line to assist their safe return to the shore. 

Meanwhile, Helmsman Lyndon Baker recognising the peril of the second girl, entered the water, dressed in shorts and T shirt.  Lyndon, because of his experience and training was sure he could make the distance, in the five knot current, to the post. Once there, he encouraged the girl to continue holding on until the D class lifeboat was launched, and able to come alongside, to complete the rescue.  Lyndon was then assisted in his return to the shore by another Coastguard  rescue team member  who threw him a safety line.

In the letters to both, Paul Boissier concluded by saying;  'This was a rapidly developing life-threatening scenario. You demonstrated quick thinking, selfless courage and excellent judgement in the face of urgency, saving the lives of two children.'

Lifeboat Operations Manager Matt Davies adds; 'RNLI volunteers are trained to respond quickly and safely to incidents of all kinds.  This was obviously a life or death situation and they both rose to the challenge.'



Burnham-on-Sea RNLI Volunteers raise £695 with their SOS day car wash

Even the weather was on their side as the sun came out for most of the morning, with over seventy vehicles of all shapes and sizes queuing for the 'Soap Our Saloons' event, to receive the usual pristine finish.

Customers' details were taken, to assist the claiming of gift aid, and the lifeboat shop was open for the purchase of RNLI branded souvenirs.

Lifeboat Operations Manager Matt Davies says; 'Many thanks to all who supported our fund-raising day, and a very special thank you to operators of the car wash next door who closed for the morning, enabling us to maximize the collection.

Our lifeboat station volunteers gave their usual high level of commitment, and money raised will go towards keeping the lifeboats afloat.'



New hands on the helm at Burnham-on-Sea RNLI Lifeboat Station

After more than six years as Burnham-on-Sea Lifeboat Operations Manager (LOM), Ricky Holmes has handed over the symbolic keys of the station to Deputy Launch Authority (DLA) Matt Davies.

Both were members of BARB (Burnham Area Rescue Boat), and moved over to the RNLI in 2003, when the present lifeboat station was installed, Ricky becoming a tractor driver, and Matt a crew/mechanic. Ricky will continue to support Matt as DLA, with advice and assistance. 

Additionally, Ashley Edwards takes over the role of RNLI station Chairman from Graham Wills, who is making a valiant step across to fill the vacancy of Chairman at the Burnham-on-Sea RNLI fund-raising branch.

Ashley is well known in the Burnham and Highbridge area as a member of Rotary, and independent funeral director, whilst Graham has a prominent financial background and is Vice Commodore of Burnham Motor boat and Sailing Club.  Graham has been Chairman at the station for around six years, and a previous driver of local regeneration.

LOM Ricky Holmes says; "Matt's dedication and hardworking attitude is well recognised, and I know I am placing the management of the station in good hands."

"I would also like thank Graham for his support of the station as Chairman, and wish him luck in his new but essential role.


New LOM Matt Davies (left) and new Chairman Ashley Edwards (right) with retiring LOM Ricky Holmes. 

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