Llandudno Lifeboat Station

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Llandudno Lifeboat Station
LLandudno lifeboat station 2017.jpg
The new Llandudno Lifeboat Station (2017) on the promenade at Craig-y-Don
Llandudno Lifeboat Station is located in Wales
Llandudno Lifeboat Station
Llandudno, Conwy
General information
TypeRNLI Lifeboat Station
LocationLloyd Street, Llandudno, UK
CountryWales, UK
Coordinates53°19′19″N 3°50′2″W / 53.32194°N 3.83389°W / 53.32194; -3.83389Coordinates: 53°19′19″N 3°50′2″W / 53.32194°N 3.83389°W / 53.32194; -3.83389
Opened1861
OwnerRoyal National Lifeboat Institution

Llandudno Lifeboat Station is located in the North Wales town of Llandudno. It was the only lifeboat station in the UK to have its boathouse located in the middle of town.[1] Whereas most lifeboat stations are situated next to the sea for obvious reasons, Llandudno Lifeboat Station was situated in Lloyd Street, almost equidistant from both of Llandudno's shores. The reason for the unique situation of Llandudno Lifeboat goes back to 1861 when the boathouse was positioned so that it could be towed equally quickly to either of Llandudno's main shores. The boathouse was constructed in 1903.[2]In order to accommodate the new Shannon-class lifeboat, a new boathouse was built on the south end of the promenade at Craig-y-Don. The new lifeboat "William F. Yates" (ON1325) arrived at its new home on 24 September 2017.

History[edit]

Originally called 'Ormes Head' lifeboat, the lifeboat was designed to look after the busy shipping area close to the Great Orme used by the many ships to ferry goods to the enormous Mersyside docks and other North Western destinations. The Great Orme with its shallow waters, strong tides, rocky coastline and often strong winds, claimed many ships and lives. Because of the weather and tidal conditions, plus the depths of water, vicious waves can quickly build up around the Orme and Liverpool Bay.

More recently, Llandudno lifeboat has undertaken some famous and unusual rescues. One mammoth 18-hour rescue in gale force winds in 2008 saw the lifeboat, under the command of Coxswain Graham Heritage, going 34 miles offshore to rescue a couple in distress whose boat had become anchored to the sea bed by fishing nets. Crew member Tim James was put aboard and spent an hour and a half, frequently submerged by waves, freeing the boat from the nets. As a result of their service that year The Crew were awarded the North Wales 'Your Champions' 2008 team award and Tim James received the top award 'Champion of Champions'.[3] A couple of years earlier, the inshore boat was launched to the aid of a humpback whale that had become tangled in ropes and a buoy off Rhos-on-Sea. The whale was successfully cut free probably saving its life.[4]

The Llandudno inshore lifeboat serves the immediate coastline of the Great Orme, Little Orme, Rhos-on-Sea, Colwyn Bay and Llandudno West Shore. On the West Shore there are dangerous sands, widely used by families visiting the seaside, that can quickly become flooded trapping people on the sand bars as the tide floods. Sadly these sands have caused tragedy in recent years and it is for this reason that the Llandudno Inshore Lifeboat, along with Conwy Inshore Lifeboat, are on 24-hour call for an immediate launch.

In 2011, Dan Jones, a former Llandudno Lifeboat RNLI coxswain was awarded an MBE for his dedication to the service.[5]

New lifeboat station[edit]

Llandudno's previous Mersey-class lifeboat, while sat on its transport trailer, with sea-tow Talus MB-H tractor

The previous station was located 700 metres (0.43 mi) from the launching point, with its consequential launch taking on average 12–15 minutes depending on traffic conditions. Local residents around the existing lifeboat station complained of shaking every time a launch was undertaken.

Llandudno was scheduled to gain a new Shannon class lifeboat in 2015, but the existing lifeboat station was too small to house it. In previous years, a number of attempts had been made to resite the lifeboat station without success, due to planning complaints raised by local hotelliers who do not want a lifeboat station interrupting the view in front of their hotel.[6] Construction of a new boathouse finally began in the spring of 2016 and was completed in the summer of 2017. The new Shannon class boat arrived at the new station on September 24, 2017.

Fleet[edit]

All Weather lifeboats[edit]

Dates in service Class ON Op. No. Name
1861–1867 32ft 10 oared Self-Righter Sisters Memorial
1867–1887 33ft 10 oared Self-righter Sisters Memorial 2
1887–1902 37ft 12 oared Self-Righter ON 124 Sunlight No. 1
1902–1930 37ft 10 oared Self-Righter ON 486 Theodore Price
1930–1931 37ft oared Self-Righter ON 465 Sarah Jane Turner
1931–1933 37ft oared Self-Righter ON 512 Matthew Simpson
1933–1953 35ft 6in Self-righting motor Single ON 768 Thomas & Annie Wade Richards
1953–1959 35ft 6in Self-righting motor Twin ON 851 Tillie Morrison, Sheffield
1959–1964 35ft 6in Liverpool Single ON 792 Annie Ronald & Isabella Forrest
1964–1990 37ft Oakley ON 976 37-09 The Lilly Wainwright
1990–2017 Mersey ON 1164 12-006 Andy Pearce
2017- Shannon ON 1325 13-18 William F. Yates

Inshore lifeboats[edit]

Dates in service Class Op. No. Name
1965–1966 D-class (RFD PB16) D-54 unnamed
1967–1976 D-class (RFD PB16) D-109 unnamed
1977–1988 D-class (Zodiac III) D-250 unnamed
1988–1996 D-class (EA16) D-359 41 Club I
1996–2006 D-class (EA16) D-508 John Saunderson
2007–2016 D-class (IB1) D-656 William Robert Saunderson
2016– D-793 Dr Barbara Saunderson

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Lifeboat plans for home by sea". BBC News. 20 May 2004. Retrieved 10 November 2011.
  2. ^ David Powell (10 October 2008). "Big move for Llandudno lifeboat?". Daily Post North Wales. Retrieved 10 November 2011.
  3. ^ "Couple rescued from the high seas". BBC News. 4 September 2008.
  4. ^ "Whale trapped in mooring rope freed". Wales Online. 2005-02-04. Retrieved 2013-08-22.
  5. ^ Llandudno lifeboat’s coxswain gets MBE - North Wales Weekly News
  6. ^ Wena Alun Owen (7 May 2012). "Llandudno town centre boathouse rethink to fit new lifeboat". BBC Wales News. Retrieved 7 May 2012.

External links[edit]