100-year-old joins Sidmouth Lifeboat crew

PUBLISHED: 09:24 27 May 2011

100 ON Saturday: Alan Charlton

100 ON Saturday: Alan Charlton


Bit it’s only a birthday treat for oldest volunteer Alan

SIDMOUTH’S lifeboat crew will welcome aboard an unlikely new addition tomorrow- 100-year-old Alan Charlton.

The independent service’s oldest volunteer has been a valued member of its support team for 15 years, but has never been out on the boat.

Centenarian Alan will get a birthday present with a difference when he finally takes to the sea as a thank-you for years of dedication to the life-saving cause.

“I’ve only ever been on pleasure boats. I expect this will be a bit different,” he said.

“I’ve had to sign an indemnity but I’ll be providing my own waterproofs.”

Vicarage Road resident Alan became the lifeboat’s first support team recruit 15 years ago after he read an appeal for volunteers in the Sidmouth Herald.

“I’ve always been interested in the boat but realised I was too old to be a crew member. I’ve always wanted to go out in the lifeboat,” he said.

“When they suggested it to me it was quite a surprise, but I agreed straight away.

“It’ll be one of the highlights of my day.

“I’m a bit apprehensive, but know the crew will take good care of me. They’ve said they’re not going to go faster than 10 miles per hour. I can’t walk very well but they’ve promised not to drop me.”

Retired engineer Alan will take a special ride in the town’s famous Toastrack at around 1.45pm tomorrow, and residents have been encouraged to gather on The Esplanade to wish him well. His lifeboat trip will take place weather permitting.

Alan turned out in all weathers to welcome visitors to the Lifeboat Station and only recently stopped helping there two times a week

“I’ve loved being in the boat house, showing people round, telling them the story and selling them anything I could,” he said.

“It’s a very good, lifesaving service I’m proud to be involved with.”

Sidmouth Lifeboat spokesperson Mark Roden said: “We’re heavily indebted to Alan for all his hard work and unwavering commitment.

“Our support team are privileged to have his services and we all look forward to his 100th birthday celebrations tomorrow (Saturday, May 28.).”

Other News Stories

Countryside volunteers are flying the flag with pride once again as a Sidmouth beauty spot has retained its status as one of the best parks in the world.

Read more

A homeless man who broke into 17 churches and caused tens of thousands of pounds of damage has been jailed.

Read more

It was a night of celebration as Ottery scout group recognised its young members and volunteers achievements over the last 12 months.

Read more

An Exeter band has defended themselves after being accused of ‘controlling’ performance space at FolkWeek.

Read more
Yesterday, 14:38

A Sidmouth pooch is hoping to make people smile after qualifying as a therapy pet.

Read more
Yesterday, 06:30

A thousand years of Ottery’s history has gone on display at the town’s new heritage museum, which opened its doors for the first time this week.

Read more
Sunday, August 12, 2018

One-day event is a ‘foodie’s paradise’, showcasing the best local produce

Read more
Sunday, August 12, 2018

Discover the wealth of marine wildlife in rockpools, in a guided exploration

Read more
Sunday, August 12, 2018

Staff at Coleridge Medical Centre have been praised for their ‘effectiveness’ and ‘compassion’ by health inspectors, as part of a ‘good’ Care Quality Commission (CQC) report.

Read more
Sunday, August 12, 2018

The original Fairport Convention was a bunch of friends meeting after school to play music. That was back in the sixties and as founder member Simon Nicol explained that was what you did.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 21°C

min temp: 16°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sidmouth Herald twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Show Job Lists

Find planning applications