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Fleetwood RNLI volunteers welcome their state-of-the-art new lifeboat

Fleetwood's RNLI volunteers are set for a new era of lifesaving with the arrival of their new lifeboat.

The £2.2 boat provides the town with one of the fastest vessels in the RNLI fleet.

It's been named Kenneth James Pierpoint, a Royal Air Force pilot who died aged just 20 in August 1942.

The purchase of the boat was only made possible thanks to a donation to the RNLI in Kenneth's memory by his sister Kathleen Mary Pierpoint.

RAF pilot Kenneth James Pierpoint, who died in 1942. His sister Kathleen left a legacy to the RNLI which is funding Fleetwood’s next lifeboat, named in honour of Kenneth. Credit: RNLI

Fleetwood's last lifeboat, named William Street, has been in service since 1989.

In that time, crews have carried out 528 rescues, and saved the lives of hundreds of people.

"The Shannon is capable of speeds of 25 knots, almost 50 per cent faster than our current lifeboat, and is more manoeuvrable.

"That means our crew will reach casualties more quickly and effectively, increasing the chance of saving their lives."

– Dave Eccles, Fleetwood RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager


Footage shows dog's dramatic rescue from sea

This video shows the dramatic moment a golden retriever had to be rescued from the water after being swept half a mile out to sea while playing on the shoreline.

Ten-year-old Martha had been with her owner on the beach in Leasowe in Merseyside and was paddling in the water when she was caught out by a strong current.

And with the strength of the outgoing tide, the dog was rapidly swept out to sea:

Credit: RNLI / Bob Warwick

When both craft reached the scene and after a search we eventually found the dog about 1/2 mile from shore and being rapidly swept out to sea on the outgoing tide.

Although sea conditions were calm it was still very difficult to spot the dog. When we eventually reached her we just managed to get hold of her collar then got her into the lifeboat.

Although she had been swimming well she was cold and shivering and we wrapped her up in survival bag and calmed her down then took her to the lifeboat station where we were met by her very relieved owner.

– Dave Lowe, The lifeboat's senior helmsman

Sunken cargo ship bound for Runcorn found on seabed

The Cypriot-registered Cemfjord was bound for Runcorn when it capsized and sunk. Credit: RNLI/Wick

A cargo ship bound for Runcorn that sunk with eight crew on board has been located on the seabed.

A major search effort was mounted on Saturday after the upturned hull of the Cypriot-registered Cemfjord was spotted in the waters of the Pentland Firth by a passing ferry. The search was suspended just after 4pm on Saturday after no trace was found of the crew members.

A sonar ship has now travelled to the area to search for the sunken ship and it is believed that the ship is upside down on the seabed.

It was a violent storm and it seems likely that the weather would have been a factor but, until we have some better idea of what happened, I can't say how much of a factor,

It must have played some part in what happened but it will take some time to put the picture together because, sadly, we're not in a position to interview the crew and the vessel is submerged in around 68 metres (223ft) of water.

– Tony Redding, spokesman for German shipping company Brise of Hamburg,

It has emerged that the Cemfjord was involved in an incident last July when it was grounded off Denmark.

Sunken cargo ship was bound for the North West

The Cypriot-registered Cemfjord was bound for Runcorn when it capsized and sunk. Credit: RNLI/Wick

A cargo vessel that capsized and sunk in the waters of the Pentland Firth was bound for Runcorn.

Severe weather is likely to have played a part in the sinking of the ship with suspected loss of all eight crew members on board.

A major search effort was first mounted on Saturday after the upturned hull of the Cypriot-registered Cemfjord was spotted in the waters of the Pentland Firth by a passing ferry.

The search was suspended just after 4pm yesterday after no trace was found of the eight crew members.

There are no plans to resume the search today.


RNLI campaign to tackle rise in coastal deaths

The RNLI's Hovercraft, the'Hurley Flyer' patrols mudflats off the coast of Morecambe Bay Credit: Phil Noble/PA

New figures reveal 29 people lost their lives around the north England coasts last year – the highest number in four years.

The number of near-misses was even higher, with 52 lives being saved by the RNLI’s lifeboat crews and lifeguards in the north.

The charity's launching a major drowning awareness campaign, Respect the Water, warning people to stay safe this summer.

The campaign targets key locations, including Blackpool, where there have been eight coastal fatalities in the last four years.

This summer one of the busiest for RNLI lifesavers

The summer of 2013 has been one of the busiest on record for Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) lifesavers in the North of England.

RNLI lifeguards say they experienced a busy season in the North, dealing with 1,408 incidents compared to 1,143 last summer – a 23.2% increase.

Our lifeboats have launched to a vast range of incidents from children getting swept out to sea on inflatables to broken down pleasure boats and dogs in difficulty.

Even the naming ceremony of our new lifeboat was interrupted by a rescue call. Our volunteers have been extremely busy this summer and I am very proud of the dedication they have all shown to the RNLI, to Blackpool Lifeboat Station and to their aim of saving lives at sea.’

– Keith Horrocks MBE, Blackpool RNLI

Jennifer Ellison tweets thanks to lifeboat 'saviours'

Moelfre RNLI coxswain Anthony Barclay with Jennifer Ellison and Robbie Tickle, who were rescued this afternoon. Credit: RNLI

The Liverpool actress Jennifer Ellison's been rescued by a lifeboat crew after getting into difficulties off the North Wales coast.

Jennifer was on board an inflatable boat with husband Robbie Tickle when it suffered engine failure and began drifting towards Moelfre island off Anglesey.

The inshore RNLI lifeboat was launched and the vessel was towed back to Moelfre beach.

Shortly after the rescue, Jennifer posted a picture of the incident and tweeted:

‘Just been sea fishing with my hubby!! Needed to be rescued!!! Terrifying! Thanks so much RNLI!’

RNLI Coxswain Anthony Barclay said: "At the time of the rescue we didn’t realise it was Jennifer on board, but after all the interest it has generated, I wanted to thank her for helping to raise awareness of the work of the RNLI charity and for showing her gratitude to the RNLI crew.

"‘They had the misfortune of suffering engine failure whilst out sea fishing but were towed back in without any complications. We’re always happy to help when the call comes and never know quite what situation we may face."

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