His Royal Highness (HRH) The Duke of Kent met volunteers at Penlee RNLI during a private visit to Newlyn Station on Monday.
As part of his visit, he spent some time in the newly renovated visitor center which is now open to the public.
Penlee has a remarkable history of bravery, with lifeboat crews having received 44 gallantry awards over its 200-year history.
The Duke, who is the president of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), was accompanied by Lord-Lieutenant of Cornwall Edward Bolitho. Both were greeted by Penlee lifeboat operations manager David Pascoe and coxswain Patch Harvey, alongside Dickon Berriman, South West Regional Lifesaving Manager and Mark Dowie, RNLI Managing Director .
They were shown around the lifeboat station which was officially opened in 2019 and introduced to a congregation of station volunteers, including the lifeboat crew, fundraisers, the RNLI shop and volunteers from the water safety, and the lifeboat press officer to find out more about their volunteer roles and the commitment they give to the charity that saves lives at sea. Security patrols on nearby beaches were also there to meet the Duke and talk more about their roles on Cornwall beaches.
The Duke spent time in the station’s visitor centre, which features a carefully curated selection of Penlee history, including the tragic events of the 1981 disaster and replica medals that the eight crew received posthumously.
Before leaving, HRH presented Director of Lifeboat Operations David Pascoe with a certificate of service and a signed certificate to commemorate his visit during the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee year, which David received at the station name. In return, the station presented the Duke with a signed book on the history of Penlee Lifeboat Station and Team Leader Patch Harvey presented him with a printed copy of Penlee’s Book of Remembrance to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Penlee disaster on 19th December 2021. A copy of the book will be made available to visitors in the new Visitor Centre.
Before HRH The Duke of Kent was taken aboard the Ivan Ellen Station All-Weather Lifeboat, a group photo was taken encompassing all the volunteer roles that make up the operation of a lifeboat station and keep the charity afloat in the local community.
On behalf of everyone at the resort, Janet Madron, Chair of Penlee Lifeboat Management Group, asked the Duke to send his best wishes to our Patron, Her Majesty The Queen, in the year of Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee.
During the Duke’s time afloat, RNLB Ivan Ellen walked past the old Mousehole boathouse where HRH paid private tribute to the crew of RNLB Solomon Browne who tragically never returned to station in December 1981.
David Pascoe, Volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager, said: “It was wonderful to welcome the chairman of the charity, HRH The Duke of Kent, to the station and introduce him to the many and varied volunteers. that we have within Penlee RNLI and all of whom play their part in keeping the station, and charity afloat in the community.We are a great team, crew and a visit like this brings everyone together.
HRH The Duke of Kent has been Chairman of the RNLI since 1969 after succeeding both of his parents as Chairman of the charity.
The RNLI Visitor Center in Newlyn Harbor Station is open to the public Monday through Friday. The resort is currently recruiting volunteer tour attendants to help greet and brief visitors upon arrival. For more information visit the RNLI website rnli.org.uk or follow Penlee RNLI on Facebook.