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Lifeboats Collection

Lifeboats have played a vital role in maritime history, saving countless lives and providing hope amidst treacherous waters

Background imageLifeboats Collection: SS Asturias, ocean liner

SS Asturias, ocean liner, built in 1926, served during the Second World War, and was used as the Titanic in the 1957 film, A Night to Remember. Date: late 1940s

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Crew of the Barry lifeboat Arthur and Blanche Harris Frederick Batten and Eric Fry (right

Crew of the Barry lifeboat Arthur and Blanche Harris Frederick Batten and Eric Fry (right) at the tiller on board the boat. Standing left is Mr. Emlyn Davies. 14th March 1970

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Crewmen of the Fishguard and Goodwick Lifeboat: left to right: Ken Bean, Ieuan Bateman

Crewmen of the Fishguard and Goodwick Lifeboat: left to right: Ken Bean, Ieuan Bateman, Noel Murrow, Roy Williams, Jack Jenkins, Glyn Bateman, Richard Fowles, George Bateman and Byron Nichols

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The former Longhope lifeboat T. G. B ON962, seen here leaving Littlehampton

The former Longhope lifeboat T. G. B ON962, seen here leaving Littlehampton
The former Longhope lifeboat T.G.B ON962, seen here leaving Littlehampton, Sussexs after being repaired follow the capsizing of the vessel

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Coveracks new lifeboat, 1954

Coveracks new lifeboat, 1954
Coveracks new lifeboat, William Taylor of Oldham, being hauled up the slipway on 24th July 1954. It cost 25, 000 to build. Cornwall. Date: 1954

Background imageLifeboats Collection: RMS Olympic, cruise ship of the White Star Line, WW1

RMS Olympic, cruise ship of the White Star Line, WW1
RMS Olympic, cruise ship of the White Star Line, seen here from a seaplane whilst on war service during WW1. Date: 1914-1918

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Lifeboat house, Mullion Cove (Porth Mellin), Mullion, Cornwall. Around 1900

Lifeboat house, Mullion Cove (Porth Mellin), Mullion, Cornwall. Around 1900
View of the Lifeboat house in about 1900. There is a boat next to the the lifeboat house. The Royal National Lifeboat Institution stationed a lifeboat at Mullion Cove in 1867

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The new motor lifeboat Robert and Marcella Beck in Plymouth before its naming ceremony in

The new motor lifeboat Robert and Marcella Beck in Plymouth before its naming ceremony in Plymouth, Devon. 3rd July 1927

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Vivienne Whiteright, Mandy Clarke, and Phillipa Lewis, female crew members of

Vivienne Whiteright, Mandy Clarke, and Phillipa Lewis, female crew members of the Little and Broadhaven lifeboat operating the beat at St Brides Bay, Pembrokeshire. 3rd February 1990

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Tenbys new 47 foot long Tyne Class lifeboat, the RFA Sir Galahad

Tenbys new 47 foot long Tyne Class lifeboat, the RFA Sir Galahad, arrives at the Tenby RNLI station yesterday. 14th July 1986

Background imageLifeboats Collection: John McDermott, coxswain of the Hoylake lifeboat with crew members Richard Martindale

John McDermott, coxswain of the Hoylake lifeboat with crew members Richard Martindale, Alan Tolley. Steve Armitage and Jeff Kernighan. 4th October 1990

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The Barry lifeboat RNLB Rachel and Mary Evans at Barry docks. Circa 1961

The Barry lifeboat RNLB Rachel and Mary Evans at Barry docks. Circa 1961

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The new lifeboat Augustus and Laura is named by Lady Frances Osborne at Newbiggin

The new lifeboat Augustus and Laura is named by Lady Frances Osborne at Newbiggin. 24th June 1939

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Keeping a lookout during exercises of the Barry lifeboat in the Bristol Channel is crew

Keeping a lookout during exercises of the Barry lifeboat in the Bristol Channel is crew member Mr. Emlyn Davies. 14th May 1970

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Carving a wake in the winter grey waters of the Bristol Channel

Carving a wake in the winter grey waters of the Bristol Channel, the Barry lifeboat Arthur and Blanche Harris sets out on an exercise. 13th March 1970

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Celebrating the 175th anniversary at the RNLI station, Atlantic college, St. Donats

Celebrating the 175th anniversary at the RNLI station, Atlantic college, St. Donats. Pictured here are students Richard Noyes, aged 18 of St

Background imageLifeboats Collection: RAF lifeboats to the rescue

RAF lifeboats to the rescue
RAF motor boats rescuing a pilot who has crash landed at sea. The boats were built at the British Power Boats works at Southampton and with 100 h.p. engines, could travel at 26 miles per hour

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Launch of the City of Dublin Life-Boat at the Custom-House Quay, Dublin (engraving)

Launch of the City of Dublin Life-Boat at the Custom-House Quay, Dublin (engraving)
1610912 Launch of the City of Dublin Life-Boat at the Custom-House Quay, Dublin (engraving) by English School, (19th century); Private Collection; (add.info)

Background imageLifeboats Collection: A new lifeboat, the Will and Fanny Kirby, launched at Seaham Harbour to replace

A new lifeboat, the Will and Fanny Kirby, launched at Seaham Harbour to replace the George Elmy which capsized with the loss of eight men. 21st September 1963

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Survivors Of The Rms Titanic In One Of Her Collapsible Lifeboats

Survivors Of The Rms Titanic In One Of Her Collapsible Lifeboats, Just Before Being Picked Up By The Carpathia. Woman Are Sharing In The Rowing

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Alvsborg Bridge, Gothenburg (Goteborg), Sweden

Alvsborg Bridge, Gothenburg (Goteborg), Sweden
Alvsborg Bridge, suspension bridge over the Gota River, Gothenburg (Goteborg), Sweden. It was built in 1966. Date: circa 1960s

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Greatheads Lifeboat 2

Greatheads Lifeboat 2
In a heavy sea, Greatheads lifeboat puts out to the aid of a vessel in distress : the helmsman stands aft, the look- out in the bows, the ten oarsmen row as best they can. Date: 1791

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Coastguard Station and Promenade, Cromer, North Norfolk

Coastguard Station and Promenade, Cromer, North Norfolk. Now the site of the wonderful RNLI Henry Blogg Museum and Rocket House Cafe (I recommend the dressed Cromer crab salad...). Date: circa 1905

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Silhouetted against the waters of Moelfre Bay, Anglesey, Wales

Silhouetted against the waters of Moelfre Bay, Anglesey, Wales, Captain Evans watches from the lifeboat house as the crew practice a launch. 20th June 1969

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The naming ceremony of the new Barry Dock lifeboat the Arthur and Blanche Harris

The naming ceremony of the new Barry Dock lifeboat the Arthur and Blanche Harris, was performed on Saturday afternoon at Barry Docks by Lady Traherne, the wife of the Lord Lieutenant of Glamorgan

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Coxswain of the Barry Lifeboat Mr. Frank Tinsley watches the life line land on the rocks

Coxswain of the Barry Lifeboat Mr. Frank Tinsley watches the life line land on the rocks of the Barry shore after he had fired the rocket carrying the line set up a breeches buoy during an exercise

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Tenby lifeboat crew, 1953

Tenby lifeboat crew, 1953

Background imageLifeboats Collection: A race of six lifeboats at Mounts Bay, Penzance, Cornwall. Date: 1867

A race of six lifeboats at Mounts Bay, Penzance, Cornwall. Date: 1867

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Drill, Holland America Line - life boats ready to launch, between c1910 and c1915

Drill, Holland America Line - life boats ready to launch, between c1910 and c1915. Creator: Bain News Service
Drill, Holland America Line - life boats ready to launch, between c1910 and c1915

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Life boats launched, Holland America line, between c1910 and c1915. Creator: Bain News Service

Life boats launched, Holland America line, between c1910 and c1915. Creator: Bain News Service
Life boats launched, Holland America line, between c1910 and c1915

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Life boat device on S.S. Imperator, between c1910 and c1915. Creator: Bain News Service

Life boat device on S.S. Imperator, between c1910 and c1915. Creator: Bain News Service
Life boat device on S.S. Imperator, between c1910 and c1915. Shows a model of the S.S. Imperator, an ocean liner of the Hamburg America Line

Background imageLifeboats Collection: 'The Ramsgate Life-boat: Morning after a Heavy Gale - Weather Moderating'...by E.W Cooke. R.A

"The Ramsgate Life-boat: Morning after a Heavy Gale - Weather Moderating"...by E.W Cooke. R.A
"The Ramsgate Life-boat: Morning after a Heavy Gale - Weather Moderating" - from the picture by E.W Cooke. R.A. 1864. Engraving of a painting

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The Royal Sovereign turret-ship, 1864. Creators: Edwin Weedon, Smyth

The Royal Sovereign turret-ship, 1864. Creators: Edwin Weedon, Smyth
The Royal Sovereign turret-ship, 1864. The first turret-ship of the British Navy, the Royal Sovereign, which has been converted from an ordinary three-decker into her present form under

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The Newbiggin lifeboat Richard Ashley is hauled back to its shed after a rescue attempt

The Newbiggin lifeboat Richard Ashley is hauled back to its shed after a rescue attempt off the Northumberland coast. 16th May 1962

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Former Ark Royal skipper Rear Admiral Wilfred Graham (second from left

Former Ark Royal skipper Rear Admiral Wilfred Graham (second from left) and secretary Stan Green (third left) with lifeboatmen at Newbiggin as they inspect the new Atlantic 21 semi inflatable inshore

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Coxswain of Mumbles Lifeboat Derek Scott, aged 43 of Mumbles Road, Southend

Coxswain of Mumbles Lifeboat Derek Scott, aged 43 of Mumbles Road, Southend, Gower pictured with the RNLI rescue craft at Mumbles Head. 14th August 1972

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The crew of the city of Bradford III at Humber Lifeboat Station at Spurn Point

The crew of the city of Bradford III at Humber Lifeboat Station at Spurn Point on the Humber Estuary in East Yorkshire. They are front coxswain Robertson Buchan

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Tenby lifeboat coxswain Alan Thomas at the Tenby lifeboat station before being presented

Tenby lifeboat coxswain Alan Thomas at the Tenby lifeboat station before being presented with the Royal national Lifeboat Institutions silver medal for gallantry in London. 22nd May 1990

Background imageLifeboats Collection: An engraving depicting the loss of the Royal Mail steamship Amazon on her maiden voyage

An engraving depicting the loss of the Royal Mail steamship Amazon on her maiden voyage, 4th January 1852
5311055 An engraving depicting the loss of the Royal Mail steamship Amazon on her maiden voyage, 4th January 1852. 104 of the 162 persons on board lost

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Coastwise: Hauled to Safety (b/w photo)

Coastwise: Hauled to Safety (b/w photo)
8671410 Coastwise: Hauled to Safety (b/w photo) by English Photographer, (20th century); Private Collection; (add.info.: Hauled to Safety)

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Sea Adventure: The wreck of the 'Indian Chief' (colour litho)

Sea Adventure: The wreck of the "Indian Chief" (colour litho)
8668760 Sea Adventure: The wreck of the "Indian Chief" (colour litho) by English School, (20th century); Private Collection; (add.info)

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The SS Germanic, 1850

The SS Germanic, 1850
3478493 The SS Germanic, 1850; (add.info.: Illustration depicting the SS Germanic picking up members of the crew of the stricken ship. Dated 19th Century.); Universal History Archive/UIG

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Henry Greathead's design of a lifeboat, 1850

Henry Greathead's design of a lifeboat, 1850
3331041 Henry Greathead's design of a lifeboat, 1850; (add.info.: Engraving depicting Henry Greathead's design of a lifeboat. Dated 19th Century.); Universal History Archive/UIG

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Henry Greathead's design of a lifeboat, 1850

Henry Greathead's design of a lifeboat, 1850
3331039 Henry Greathead's design of a lifeboat, 1850; (add.info.: Engraving depicting Henry Greathead's design of a lifeboat. Dated 19th Century.); Universal History Archive/UIG

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The lifeboat Quiver at Margate Kent, 1850

The lifeboat Quiver at Margate Kent, 1850
3331036 The lifeboat Quiver at Margate Kent, 1850; (add.info.: Engraving depicting the lifeboat Quiver at Margate Kent being launched to go to help a ship in danger)

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The crew of the Caister lifeboat rescuing a survivor from a fishing smack wrecked on the Barber

The crew of the Caister lifeboat rescuing a survivor from a fishing smack wrecked on the Barber Sand, 1850
3331031 The crew of the Caister lifeboat rescuing a survivor from a fishing smack wrecked on the Barber Sand, 1850; (add.info)

Background imageLifeboats Collection: Lower the Lifeboat, 1850

Lower the Lifeboat, 1850
3478533 Lower the Lifeboat, 1850; (add.info.: Illustration titled Lower the Lifeboat depicting a man shouting during a raging storm. Dated 19th Century.); Universal History Archive/UIG

Background imageLifeboats Collection: The launching of a lifeboat into the water, 1850

The launching of a lifeboat into the water, 1850
3331021 The launching of a lifeboat into the water, 1850; (add.info.: Engraving depicting the launching of a lifeboat into the water. Dated 19th Century.); Universal History Archive/UIG



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Lifeboats have played a vital role in maritime history, saving countless lives and providing hope amidst treacherous waters. From the majestic SS Asturias, an ocean liner that met its tragic fate during World War I, to the humble Longhope lifeboat T. G. B ON962 departing Littlehampton with unwavering determination, these vessels embody bravery and resilience. The Fishguard and Goodwick Lifeboat crewmen - Ken Bean and Ieuan Bateman - stand united, ready to face any challenge that comes their way. Similarly, the Barry lifeboat's Arthur and Blanche Harris Frederick Batten alongside Eric Fry exemplify selflessness as they embark on perilous missions. In 1954, Coverack welcomed its new lifeboat with open arms; a symbol of hope for those lost at sea. Meanwhile, the RMS Olympic of the White Star Line carried passengers through calm seas before being repurposed during World War I to aid in military efforts. The Tynemouth lifeboat Tynesider is carefully lifted into position - a testament to teamwork and precision. The Tynemouth Lifeboat Dinghy named Trevor Fryer stands as a reminder of dedication even in smaller vessels. During exercises in the Bristol Channel, members of the Barry lifeboat keep watch diligently against all odds. Their wake carves through winter grey waters as they navigate unpredictable currents. Tenby proudly introduces its new Tyne Class lifeboat RFA Sir Galahad – 47 feet long – ready to serve those in need along its shores. Celebrating their 175th anniversary at Atlantic College's RNLI station in St. Donats showcases how far these brave individuals have come since their inception and can more than just vessels; they represent humanity's unwavering spirit when faced with adversity on unforgiving seas. These snapshots capture moments where courage prevails over fear and remind us that heroes exist among us – dedicated souls who risk their lives to save others.