Dorset

Queen's Birthday Honour for Swanage RNLI lifeboat volunteer

Neil Hardy Image copyright Rebecca Mack RNLI
Image caption Neil Hardy has been operations manager for Swanage RNLI since 1989

A volunteer who has helped co-ordinate lifeboat rescues in which the lives of almost 200 people were saved has been recognised in the Queen's Birthday Honours list.

Swanage RNLI operation manager Neil Hardy, 59, has been appointed MBE.

The retired ferry captain has carried out the voluntary work at the Dorset station since 1989.

He was nominated for services to maritime safety and said it was "an honour and a surprise".

"I must accept it on behalf of the Swanage lifeboat station and the community which have supported the station through thick and thin," he added.

While he has been in the role, the station has had 1,497 shouts, come to the aid of 1,366 people and saved the lives of 194 people.

The lifeboat station is currently being redeveloped to accommodate a bigger lifeboat which is due to enter service in 2016.

Image copyright Mike Faherty/RNLI
Image caption Swanage lifeboat station is currently undergoing a revamp to house a bigger boat

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