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Two Lukes train for RNLI Torbay!

Lifeboats News Release

Two trainee lifeboat crew members, Luke Netherton and Luke Soul, have just returned from an intensive Crew Emergency Procedures training course at RNLI College in Poole, Dorset.

The two volunteer lifeboat crewmen (who joined the Torbay crew just under a year ago) returned last week from their hands-on training session at the charity’s headquarters, funded by Lloyd’s Register Foundation. As well as classroom theory lessons, they were required to undergo realistic and demanding emergency procedures in the RNLI Sea Survival Centre's 25m wave-generating tank, enduring simulated storm conditions including cold, darkness and lightning whilst conducting ‘abandon ship’ procedures and deploying life rafts.

The Lukes – who enjoy rugby and fishing when not at work - agree the course was strenuous but thoroughly enjoyable. Both young men are local; Luke Soul lived in Brixham until age 14 when his family moved to Spain, and is loving being back in his home town. Luke Netherton has always lived in the same area of Torbay, and works as an auctioneer at Brixham Trawler Agents.

The two young men have long held an ambition to join the RNLI, and say being part of the team has met their expectations, citing a great bunch of crew mates (and banter!), and giving something back to the community as their motivation. They report that recalling the many aspects of safety training in the moment of leaping 4m into cold, stormy water (whilst mindful of their own safety and that of others) was exciting, challenging and rewarding.

When asked what people might be surprised to learn about them, Luke Soul mentioned that he speaks Spanish, and Luke Netherton said he only weighs 8 stones … we’re not sure we believe that one Luke, but on behalf of the local community thank you both for forming part of our amazing volunteer lifeboat crew!

The two Lukes describe the Torbay team as ‘one big family’ and indeed the RNLI Torbay volunteer lifeboat are on standby 24/7 to help save lives at sea, giving up their time to ensure they remain highly trained and regularly on exercise with Torbay’s Severn Class and D Class lifeboats. To date, the Lloyds Register Foundation has supported the training of over 3000 RNLI volunteer crew, an impressive record and one which the charity values immensely.

Notes to editors

Torbay Lifeboat Station Key Facts:

RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone Victoria Bowen, RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07794 043 428: or contact Carrie Garrad, RNLI Regional Media Officer on 07786 668 847: or alternatively RNLI Public Relations at Poole HQ on 01202 336 789.

RNLI/Vicki Bowen

Luke Netherton (left) and Luke Soul aboard RNLI Torbay all-weather lifeboat

RNLI/Jen Clough

The two Lukes with their course colleagues at RNLI College, Poole

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.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 or by email.


The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland