Aberystwyth Lifeboat Station

Aberystwyth Lifeboat Station
RNLI Lifeboat station
Country Wales, UK
County Ceredigion
Region Cardigan Bay
Location Aberystwyth, Ceredigion, Wales
 - coordinates 52°24′50″N 4°4′52″W / 52.41389°N 4.08111°W / 52.41389; -4.08111Coordinates: 52°24′50″N 4°4′52″W / 52.41389°N 4.08111°W / 52.41389; -4.08111
Founded 1861 (independent from 1843)
Owner Royal National Lifeboat Institution
Aberystwyth, Ceredigion

Aberystwyth Lifeboat Station is an RNLI lifeboat station in the coastal resort of Aberystwyth, Ceredigion, West Wales. It was established in 1861, but there has been a lifeboat serving the town since 1843.

Since 2007 the station has operated an Atlantic 85-class inshore lifeboat, RNLB Spirit of Friendship (B-822),[1] launched by submersible tractor.

The station also has an Arancia IRB as support for the larger Atlantic 85-class inshore lifeboat.


The first lifeboat at Aberystwyth was a 27 ft, 6-oared boat funded by public subscription in 1843 and under the control of the harbour master. In 1861 the RNLI took over the service, completing a chain of RNLI stations along the coast of Cardigan Bay from Strumble Head to the Llŷn Peninsula.

The 10-oared Evelyn Wood was the first RNLI lifeboat.[2][3]

A severe gale on 29 December 1900 saw Coxswain David Williams launch the lifeboat to a fishing smack; in heavy seas three lifeboatmen (Jack Williams, Tom Jones and J.C. Rea) were thrown overboard but were rescued by their fellow crewmen. Despite the loss of most of their oars they managed to beach the lifeboat and hold it until the tide ebbed. In the meantime the fishermen, whose boat was wrecked on the rocks, made it safely to shore.[4]

In February 1946 Frederick Angus was at sea for more than 24 hours in severe weather standing by the broken down submarine HMS Universal and helping to rescue her crew.[5]

In 1964 Aberystwyth was the first RNLI lifeboat station to change from offshore to solely inshore lifeboats.[6]

The Arancia IRB was established in Aberystwyth in 2013 and was dedicated in Holy Trinity Church, it is believed to be the first and only lifeboat to be dedicated within a church.[7][8]


Talus MB4H Launching Tractor

Aberystwyth has been served by a number of lifeboats in its more than 150 years of operation by the RNLI and more than 170 years in total.[6][9][10][11]

All Weather lifeboats (ALBs)

Dates in service Class ON Name Comments
1843–1862 27 ft Pulling (6 oars) unnamed Independent lifeboat under Harbourmaster's control
1861–1876 Pulling (10 oars) Evelyn Wood First RNLI lifeboat
1876–1881 33 ft Pulling & Sailing Lady Haberfield
1881–1887 Pulling & Sailing Lady Haberfield II
1887–1906 Pulling & Sailing Elizabeth Lloyd
1906–1932 Pulling & Sailing (10 oars) ON 562 John and Naomi Beattie
1932–1949 35ft 6in Self-righting motor-class ON 757 Frederick Angus
1949–1951 35ft 6in Self-righting motor-class ON 745 Lady Harrison
1951–1964 Liverpool-class Twin ON 892 Aguila Wren

Inshore lifeboats (ILBs)

Aberystwyth's Atlantic 75-class RNLB Enid Mary (B-704)
Dates in service Class Op. No. Name Comments
1963 D-class (RFD PB16) D-1 unnamed
1964 D-class (RFD PB16) D-19 unnamed
1965–1967 D-class (RFD PB16) D-30 unnamed
1967–1969 D-class (RFD PB16) D-140 unnamed
1969–1970 D-class (RFD PB16) D-28 unnamed
1970–1983 D-class (RFD PB16) D-186 unnamed
1983–1993 C-class C-509 unnamed Originally D-509 until reclassified as a C-class
1993–1994 Atlantic 21-class B-590 Wolverson X-Ray
1994–2007 Atlantic 75-class B-704 Enid Mary
2007–present Atlantic 85-class B-822 Spirit of Friendship

Launching Vehicles

Dates in Service Class Op. No. Comments
2012-present Talus MB4H TW46H The first MkII Bendy


A number of awards have been made to recognise exemplary service to the RNLI.[2]

Visitor access

This station is classed as an RNLI "Observe" lifeboat station; it welcomes visitors via appointment.[12]

Groups (schools, clubs, organisations) who wish to visit the station can request a tour and presentation via the stations website.[13]

See also


  1. "RNLI – Aberystwyth Lifeboat Station". Retrieved 22 October 2014.
  2. 1 2 "Aberystwyth Lifeboat Station History". Retrieved 22 October 2014.
  3. "History Points – Aberystwyth Lifeboat Station". Retrieved 22 October 2014.
  4. "A Great Gale - Many lifeboats at work". Western Mail. British Newspaper Archive. 29 December 1900. Retrieved 30 October 2014. (subscription required (help)).
  5. "Lifeboats get gallant crew off submarine". Lancashire Daily Post. British Newspaper Archive. 5 February 1946. Retrieved 31 October 2014. (subscription required (help)).
  6. 1 2 "Peoples Collection Wales". Retrieved 22 October 2014.
  7. "RNLI lifeboat's Welsh church blessing is UK first". walesonline. Retrieved 2016-04-22.
  8. "Blessing in church for rescue craft | The Times". The Times. Retrieved 2016-04-22.
  9. "A History of Courage". 22 May 1987. Retrieved 22 October 2014.
  10. "Lifeboat Landmarks". 29 May 1987. Retrieved 22 October 2014.
  11. "Inshore rescue - 3 miles from the sea". 5 June 1987. Retrieved 22 October 2014.
  12. "Aberystwyth Lifeboat Station". RNLI. Retrieved 2016-04-22.
  13. Lifeboat, Aberystwyth. "Visit Us". www.aberystwythlifeboat.org.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-22.

External links

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