Training boost for Sidmouth Lifeboat crew

Tractor driver sought

SIDMOUTH Lifeboat crew welcomed a new helmsman as other members excelled during their training.

The independent service is on the lookout for volunteer tractor drivers to help launch the vessel.

Crew members, aged from 18 to 50, male and female, train for two hours every Tuesday evening and for four hours every other Sunday morning.

Glyn Jones has been appointed helmsman of the lifeboat.

The newly qualified 46-year-old, who owns the Driftwood craft shop in Libra Court, helped rescue Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall on one of his first callouts in the role.

Fellow lifesavers, Naomi Firth and Alex Goodall, have continued to build on their basic training.

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The crew’s three newest recruits Guy Bennett, Rob Cole and Guy Russell have worked their way through a range of internal and external training requirements during the last year, ranging from sea survival to first aid.

The ‘two Guys’ were recently made full crew, while Rob has only one exercise left to be signed off in his task book.

Volunteer tractor drivers, with Category F or HGV licences, are being sought and experience is not essential.

Current drivers, Shaun Howell and Mark Wearing, are now regularly launching the boat from behind the wheel of the 17-ton rig in calm conditions and will be put through their paces with a wider range of winter elements in the coming months.

“Although our complement of crew is currently full, we’re always on the look out for future new members,” said a service spokesman.

Lifeboat leaders ensure there are always enough volunteer crew available to launch at any time, 365 days-a-year.

More information and application forms are available at, or call into the boat house, at the eastern end of the Esplanade, on (01395) 513171.

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