On Saturday September 23, Rye Harbour RNLI lifeboat station’s new lifeboat Hello Herbie II was officially named by Mr Nigel Carter who poured champagne over her bow before the lifeboat was launched to show off its paces.
Graeme Richardson, Lifeboat Area Lifesaving Manager, gave a vote of thanks to Mrs Sheila Pigott, who together with her late husband Mr John David Pigott made a considerable donation towards the funding of the new lifeboat, and to Mr Carter, the family of whom donated the original Hello Herbie which was seriously damaged and written off two years ago.
The Reverend Canon David Frost led the Service of Dedication in front of a large audience, including the Lord Lieutenant, Mr Peter Field, and the High Sheriff of East Sussex, Mrs Maureen Chowen.
The Atlantic 85 class RNLI lifeboat was introduced in 2005 and is larger than its predecessor, the Atlantic 75. It is a B class inshore lifeboat, designed to operate in shallow water. There is no wheelhouse, so the crew (usually three to four) are exposed to the elements at all times. It is one of the fastest lifeboats in the fleet with a top speed of 35 knots and can operate in a force seven wind in daylight and up to force 6 winds at night.
Jai Gudgion, one of the helmsmen, said “Hello Herbie II is perfect for service in the Rye bay area. She has two onboard computer screens for radar and GPS tracking and a VHF direction finder for helping to pinpoint any casualty. We can now carry four crew and have more survivor space.”
Rye Harbour lifeboat station would like to thank the many people and organisations who have kindly raised monies to pay for the new lifeboat. Thanks also to our fund raising team and volunteers.
The final fund raising event will be an illustrated talk about the Mary Stanford disaster of 1928, the worst in the history of the RNLI, where the Rye Harbour crew of 17 all lost their lives. This will be held on Friday October 20 at 6pm in Rye Harbour Church of the Holy Spirit. Tickets at £20 (including wine and canapes) are available from Claire Stephenson on 01797 222032 or email@example.com
Photos: KT Bruce and John Minter