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Llandudno’s new Shannon class lifeboat arrives

Lifeboats News Release

Llandudno's brand-new £2.2m RNLI Shannon-class lifeboat 'William F Yates' arrived in Llandudno bay for the first time at 12 noon today following her 400-mile delivery voyage from RNLI Headquarters in Poole.

Llandudno's Shannon class lifeboat, 'William F Yates' - the first Shannon class lifeboat to be stationed in Wales.

RNLI/Nicholas Leach

Llandudno Shannon class lifeboat

The home-coming was watched by members of the town's 60-strong volunteer lifeboat team along with thousands of local people, holidaymakers and day trippers on the promenade, in addition to more spectators aboard jet skis, motor cruisers kayaks and other craft in the bay.

On board throughout the journey from Poole had been Llandudno's Coxswain Graham Heritage, Second Coxswain Tim James, Mechanic Les Jones, Assistant Mechanic Luke Heritage and crewman Mike Jones, accompanied by RNLI Fleet Staff Coxswain Andrew McHaffie. On her way to North Wales the lifeboat had made overnight stops at Brixham, Newlyn, Kilmore Quay in Ireland and Conwy.

After arriving in the bay escorted by the resort's current all-weather lifeboat Andy Pearce and inshore lifeboat Dr Barbara Saunderson the new lifeboat proceeded to give a demonstration of her capabilities and manoeuvrability before being beached prior to being transferred into the new lifeboat station.

Speaking later, Coxswain Heritage said 'Over the past few weeks a number of our crew members have been undergoing training at sea on Shannon-class lifeboats, working out of the RNLI College at Poole. All of us have been greatly impressed with the lifeboats' manoeuvrability, sea-keeping qualities, speed and on-board equipment. I and my crew for the voyage home had therefore been looking forward immensely to bringing the William F Yates to Llandudno; during our 4-day passage to North Wales we found the lifeboat exceeded our expectations in every respect, and we felt honoured and proud to be bringing her into the bay for the first time today.'

Notes to editor

Please see attached photos taken yesterday of the Shannon’s arrival in Llandudno.

Credit: Dave James

RNLI media contact

For more information contact Alan Sharp, RNLI Llandudno Lifeboat Press Officer on 01492 543315. Alternately contact Eleri Roberts, RNLI Media Engagement Officer on 01745 585162 / 07771 941390 or email

Llandudno's Shannon class lifeboat 'William F Yates'

RNLI/Nicholas Leach

Llandudno's Shannon class lifeboat
Llandudno's Shannon class lifeboat and launch and recovery kit in front of the station's new boathouse at Craig-y-Don

RNLI/Nicholas Leach

Llandudno's Shannon class lifeboat and new RNLI boathouse

Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen, Carrybridge and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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