Happisburgh R.N.L.I. Lifeboat Station volunteers had a busy 48hrs. It all started on 3rd August with the Annual Lifeboat Day and Fete, commencing with an early start to get everything set-up for the day ahead and with the sun shining all was going well.
At 12pm the crowds arrived and all were having fun when at 12:30pm the crew were called into action to go to a May Day call from the Dive-boat “ Thetford Diver”, which was sinking with six persons on board. Happisburgh’s Atlantic “Douglas Paley” with Tony Phenix at the helm and Charlotte Siely and Ross Scannell as crew were soon on their way, much to the delight of the large crowd on the beach, due to the large number of possible casualties the Station’s relief ‘D’ class was also launched as backup with Jake Munday at the helm with Timmy Grimmer and Dave Cato as crew.
The Atlantic arrived on scene, which was off Winterton, at the same time as Caister Lifeboat, which picked up the divers and then transferred two onto Happisburgh’s Atlantic Lifeboat to take back to Sea Palling; en route to Sea Palling one of the divers became unwell so he was treated by the crew before being transferred to the ‘D’ class which then landed on the beach to enable him to be checked over by Ambulance crew. Both boats then returned to Happisburgh to carry on with Lifeboat Day and Fete; all that was left for the crew and volunteers to do was to clear up
The afternoon was very well attended, even though this was the first time the event had been held at Cart Gap. We would like to thank everyone who attended and let them know we raised almost £5,000, of which £1,000 was donated by Mrs Patricia Fox from Cambridgeshire, who has been a long-term benefactor to the Station.
On Monday 4th August the Station’s Atlantic Lifeboat “Douglas Paley” was called into action again, this time to a 12-metre steel hulled yacht off Happisburgh, which had engine problems and was losing its electrics. Cubitt Siely was at the helm with Jake Munday and Charlotte Siely as crew. They were soon alongside the yacht and even though it had its sails up was making only a little headway. It was taken in tow by Happisburgh Lifeboat, heading for Great Yarmouth, until the arrival of Gorleston Lifeboat, which then took over the tow.
“Douglas Paley” then joined Happisburgh’s relief ‘D’ class and Mundesley Lifeboat in a 1hr exercise with the RAF Air Sea Rescue helicopter from Wattisham, practicing winching people on and off the Lifeboats. Happisburgh was able to put 7 of its crew through this training, some of them for the first time; all went very well and both the Lifeboat crews and helicopter crew gained valuable experience.
The above illustrates the commitment that is shown by the RNLI volunteers having to deal with call-outs, training and also raising money to support their role of saving lives at sea.