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Salcombe RNLI hosts naming ceremony for their new B Class Atlantic 85 lifeboat.

Lifeboats News Release

The RNLI Salcombe volunteer crew were blessed with a warm spring day to hold the formal naming ceremony of their new B class lifeboat Gladys Hilda Mustoe. Approximately 200 people witnessed a very traditional ceremony with a Service of Dedication and Gospel Choir performing ‘Crossing the Bar’.

RNLI/Richard Clayton

Prepairing for the day

Rear Admiral Bruce Williams CBE, LMG Chairman welcomed guests and opened proceedings.

Mr. Clive Kirby, nephew of Gladys Mustoe, whose legacy funded the lifeboat, spoke warmly of a kind and generous lady whose job was to raise funds for Kings Medical Research Trust. Her love of the sea and cruising, particularly in Mediterranean seas. In later years, when she became very ill she bore her illness throughout with fortitude and good humour.

Mr. Paul Boissier, RNLI Chief Executive accepted the lifeboat on behalf of the RNLI before handing it into the care of Salcombe Lifeboat Station.

Mark Dowie, Lifeboat Operations Manager, and Chris Winzar Lifeboat Coxswain accepting it on behalf of the station and crew.

After a Service of Dedication, conducted by The Reverend Daniel French, Mark Dowie, invited Mr. Kirby to officially name the lifeboat and in keeping with the local theme of inclusion, a bottle of Salcombe Gin was used to finally seal the name Gladys Hilda Mustoe.

After a short speech and vote of thanks from Salcombe Town Mayor Mike Fice and whilst three cheers rang out the Gladys Hilda Mustoe slipped into the water. With crewmembers Sam Viles, Iain Dundas, James Marshall and Jeff Gillard aboard proceeded at slow speed through the Harbour giving all who had gathered on the shore line the chance for a close-up view and pictures.

When interviewed Mark Dowie said ‘It’s been a great day, the service was wonderful and it’s a great way for us to get together the lifeboat community, so all the crew, former crew, fundraisers, helpers and also the donors, the people who gave the money for the lifeboat, to launch the lifeboat on its service life’.

At the close guests were then invited to the Fortescue Arms for light refreshments.

This was not the end of the volunteer’s day, for on the turn of the tide the Gladys Hilda Mustoe plus a small flotilla of launches sailed into the nearby town of Kingsbridge. It was to this town that the first Salcombe lifeboat was delivered by road 149 years ago, before being rowed by its crew to its newly built lifeboat station in Salcombe.

The flotilla was meet and welcomed by the Deputy Mayor, Anne Balkwill and many residents when it came alongside at Crabshell Quay. After several short speeches, the crew and officials discussed with many the advanced features of the new boat before being invited into the Crabshell for light refreshments.

In closing the crew of RNLI Salcombe feel the day was one that Gladys Hilda Mustoe would have approved.

RNLI Salcombe would like to thank all for making this such a memorable day, with special thanks to The Salcombe Gin Company, The Fortescue Inn and the Crabshell Inn for their continued support.

RNLI/Richard Clayton

Mr Clive Kirby, Nephew

RNLI/Richard Clayton

Naming the Lifeboat

RNLI/Richard Clayton

Ready to Serve

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