Station History

Lifeboat station established 1861

When this station was established it completed the chain of lifeboats on that part of the Welsh coast. Following collections in the town, a small lifeboat was purchased in 1843 and placed under the control of the Harbour Master. It was a small craft, 27ft long, with oars, and was housed in a boathouse near the harbour. No record exists regarding the number of services this lifeboat carried out.

In February 1861, a public meeting was held to establish a branch of the RNLI. Rev John Williams was appointed Honorary Secretary. A ten oared double- banked lifeboat, on the self righting principle, was sent to station in October 1861, complete with transporting carriage and complete equipment. The inaugural launch of the RNLB Evelyn Wood took place in early November 1861.

In 1963 Aberystwyth was the first station to be equipped with an inshore lifeboat. Placed on service in May, the first rescue was on 3 June. In October 1964 the offshore lifeboat was withdrawn.

 

History Of Events

1866

Silver medal awarded to Watkin Lewis of Aberystwyth, in acknowledgment of his gallant conduct in swimming out, at the peril of his life, to effect a communication with the schooner Rebecca of Bridgewater which was wrecked off Aberystwyth on 25th March and afterwards aiding to save her crew of six persons. Also for wading into the surf at Aberystwyth and saving his own father, who had been carried out to sea in endeavouring to save the life of another person on 10 September.

1875

New Lifeboat house constructed at a cost of £250

1877

John James, a member of the crew, died from exhaustion after a long service to a Schooner on 20 February. The committee of Management voted £120 to local fund in aid of the widow and two children.

1880

On returning to the shore after going to the distressed Brig Julia, the lifeboat under sail capsized after being struck by a sudden squall. Fortunately all the crew regained the boat.

1898

Slipway was reconstructed.

1912

During a severe gale the heavy sea damaged the slipway and lifted a portion about 18 inches, the piles being drawn out of the ground.

1954

Thanks of the Institute inscribed on Vellum were accorded to Baden P Davies, coxswain, for the rescue of three People from the fishing vessel Lindy Lou of Aberdovey on 26 July.

1962

Centenary Vellum awarded to station.

1963

D Class lifeboat sent to Station in May

1964

Conventional lifeboat withdrawn from station 31 October and permanent inshore lifeboat station established.

1970

Thanks of the institute inscribed on Vellum were accorded to Messrs A Blair, M Nichol and K Stone for the rescue of a bather on 1 September.

1976

Bronze medal awarded to Alan Blair, a member of the crew of the inshore lifeboat, in recognition of the courage and determination displayed by him when he swam from the motor fishing vessel Western seas and dived repeatedly in an attempt to rescue two men who were trapped in the cabin of the capsized motor cruiser Annabel II about 60 yards from the north harbour arm on 22 February.

1978

Framed letter of appreciation signed by the Chairman of the Institute awarded to Robert Gorman, a member of the inshore lifeboat crew, who put out in his fishing vessel Lona on 6 December and took a sailing boat and a college rescue boat in tow in a south easterly gale. The sailing boat had capsized and the college rescue boat's engine had broken down. The four people rescued required medical assistance.

1980

Two doctors from a local hospital called at the lifeboat house on the evening of 10 April seeking the use of a boat to collect some clean seawater. A nine-year old patient, who had pneumonia, had developed severe congestion in his bronchial passages, which the doctors believed could be eased by inhalation of vaporized seawater. The Inshore lifeboat was launched and one gallon of seawater was collected from well out in Cardigan Bay. The unusual treatment had immediate beneficial effect on the young boy.

1984

Class of lifeboat changed from D to C

1985

Letter of appreciation signed by the Chairman of the Institute awarded to Helmsman Alan Blair, in recognition of his commendable action on 3 July when he dived into the sea near a public Slipway at Blackpill when en route to the home of the Mumbles coxswain following the Naming Ceremony of the new Mumbles lifeboat and rescued a young girl who got into difficulties whilst playing in the sea with a polystyrene board some 20 to 25 yards offshore.

1991

Bronze medals were awarded to Peter Heading, Helmsman of the C class lifeboat and crew member Robert Gorman, skipper of the fishing vessel Seren-y-mor for the service on 18 September 1990 when the sole occupant of teh vessel Otter was rescued and the craft was saved one mile outside of Aberystwyth Harbour in a Force 7 wind and steep sea. The lifeboat took the yacht in tow after transferring crew members Michael Harris to the Otter and rendezvoused with the fishing vessel Seren-y-mor in a position 3/4 of a mile west by south of the harbour. The Seren-y-mor took over the tow and eh yacht was successfully taken into the harbour.

Crew member Michael Harris was accorded the Thanks of the Institution inscribed on Vellum for his part in this service when he boarded the yacht from the lifeboat and established a tow and took over the helm of the Otter.

Framed letters of appreciation signed by the Chairman of eh Institution were presented to David Davies and Martin Porter, members of the lifeboat crew, and Alan Blair, Brian Slack, Bryan Pugh-Jones and Sandro James, members of the Seren-Y-Mor crew. The Ralph Glister Award was awarded to the crew for his service.

1993

New boathouse constructed for eh station's new Atlantic 21 lifeboat. As well as housing the Atlantic 21 lifeboat and launching tractor coupled-in-line, it also includes a fuels tore and improved crew facilities.

C class lifeboat withdrawn and replaced by an Atlantic 21 class lifeboat on 24 June

1994

Atlantic class lifeboat withdrawn on 30 March and replaced by a new Atlantic 75 class lifeboat.

2008

The Atlantic 75 is withdrawn and replaced with the Atlantic 85 'Spirit of Friendship'