Images taken whilst recording this series with the Barrow
The charity's national website.
in the North
Includes a link to Barrow lifeboat station.
RNLI has 4 lifeboat stations in Cumbria - Barrow, St Bees,
Workington and Silloth
was the RNLI's busiest year nationally. In Cumbria - Barrow
was the busiest station with 19 calls and 30 people rescued.
Barrow's first lifeboat station was established in 1864. The
current station was opened in 2001 and cost £3million.
The Barrow crew cover 50 miles into the Irish Sea, up to Workington
and south to Morecambe.
lifeboat crew has 19 members who go out to sea, plus a team
who keep things ticking over back at base.
The Barrow lifeboat is called 'RNLI James Bibby' and is a
Tyne Class boat - the Tyne was the first 'fast' slipway boat
introduced in 1982. The last Tyne was built in 1990 and the
Barrow boat is one of four Tyne class lifeboats operating
in the RNLI's North Division.
boat is steel, 47' long, carries 6 crew & can reach a
max speed of 18 knots.
crew are on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year but dont
earn a penny because they're volunteers.
The boat is stored on a table inside the station. When it's
launched, the table tips up and the boat slides 80 metres
down the slipway at a speed of up to 25 miles per hour.
version of this page.
crew are all volunteers, who not only give up their time, but also
risk their lives to save other people.
come from all different walks of life - there are people here from
the nearby gas terminal, the hospital, the police force, the coroner's
office and all sorts of other jobs - a whole range of people, some
who give up their time to run rescue missions with the boat and
some who keep things ticking over back at base.
Coxswain Alec Moore is in charge of the lifeboat crew - 19 of them
in all. Alec started off as a volunteer 34 years ago as a teenager,
and worked his way up through the ranks until he became the boss.
you enter the lifeboat station here there's an exhibition of photographs
and information about the current crew and those from years gone
by - and for Alec it's like a personal family album...
Alec Moore talk to Claire Barrowdale
Nuttall, a retired scientist, is the Lifeboat Operations Manager.
He is the man who receives the call-out when there's an incident
at sea. The area covered by this boat reaches 50 miles out to sea,
North up to Workington and South down to Morecambe.
the crew are out on a job, it's Ron's job to co-ordinate the rescue
from the crew room back at base...
Ron Nuttall talk to Claire Barrowdale
lifeboat has to be ready at a moment's notice at any time of day
or night and the RNLI has one paid member of staff at each station
who works full time to ensure the boat is
ship-shape and ready to sail. The mechanic in Barrow is Paul Heavyside...
Heavyside talks to Claire Barrowdale
volunteers based at Roa Island are on call 24 hours a day, 365 days
crew are split into two teams, some inside the cabin, called the
wheelhouse, and some outside on the steering deck. I was with the
Coxswain, Alec Moore, outside on the deck, doing my best to hang
on tight as we plummeted 80 metres down the slipway and out to sea...
Barrowdale goes to sea
out more about Claire
Barrowdale the author of this feature.
Programme recorded April 2004