February 2017 meeting report: RNLI visit

41 Club visits the new Scarborough Lifeboat House

The February 41 Club visit took the form of a visit to the new RNLI Lifeboat House at Scarborough’s Sandside  to have a look at their new facilities.

The RNLI lifeboat crews showed us the new Shannon class lifeboat which cost £2.3m – and looked it – being in fantastic condition and very shiny.

The new lifeboat had been funded by donations from the F W Plaxton Charitable Trust and will be named “Frederick William Plaxton”. The RNLI fundraising appeal also raised £200,000 towards the cost of a bespoke launch and recovery vehicle for the new lifeboat.

The building includes a revamped shop and an exhibition space where those who visit can learn about the history of the lifesaving charity. There are also upgraded volunteer crew facilities with extra space for lifesaving training and an up-to-date drying room for their kit.

The Shannon class lifeboat is the first modern RNLI all-weather lifeboat to be powered by water jets and not propellers. Capable of 25 knots, the Shannon is 50% faster than the lifeboats it replaces, so ensuring that those in need are reached even faster.

The Shannon needs a bespoke launch and recovery system. She is designed to be mostly launched and recovered from a beach but, without the right launching equipment, this is impossible. The RNLI worked with Supacat Ltd in developing a system capable of launching and recovering the Shannon class lifeboat from the beach at all states of the tide.

After the tour of the Lifeboat House tour we were treated to a fish and chip supper at the Golden Grid which was as tasty as ever.

Stuart Baines
Scarborough 41 Club roving reporter

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