Brede-class lifeboat

Class overview
Builders: Lochin Marine International Ltd., Rye, East Sussex
Operators: Royal National Lifeboat Institution
Preceded by: Rother
Succeeded by: Arun
Built: 1981–1985
In service: 1982–2002
Completed: 10
Retired: 10
General characteristics
Type: Motor lifeboat
Displacement: 8.5 long tons (8.6 t)
Length: 33 ft (10 m)
Beam: 12 ft (3.7 m)
Draught: 4 ft 3 in (1.30 m)
Speed: 18.6 knots (21.4 mph)
Range: 140 nautical miles (260 km)
Capacity: 8 plus 1 stretcher
Crew: 4

The Brede-class lifeboat was operated by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) from its stations around the coasts of the United Kingdom between 1982 and 2002, at which time it was the fastest all-weather lifeboat in its fleet. Eleven were put into service and when replaced by larger boats seven were sold for further use as lifeboats, mainly in South Africa.

The class took its name from the River Brede which joins the River Rother to flow into the English Channel at Rye, Sussex.


During the 1960s and 1970s the RNLI had placed a number of fast lifeboats into service. These had mostly been 44 ft (13 m) Waveney-class but there was a need for smaller, more manoeuvrable boats that were larger than the Atlantic 21 inshore lifeboats. A large boat was built using the construction methods of the Atlantic 21 but this Medina-class lifeboat was never adopted.[1] A prototype Brede was constructed in 1981 and the following year the first two production Brede-class were built.[2] These had a larger wheelhouse than the prototype and placed in service at Fowey and Oban lifeboat stations in October.[3] Ten more production boats followed but production ceased in 1985. The first Brede to be withdrawn was RNLB Ann Richie (ON 1080) which only saw five years service. By the end of 1994 the fleet had been reduced to just five boats; three in the relief fleet and those stationed at Poole and Calshot.[2] The boats had been too small to operate in extreme weather and surveys highlighted potential problems with structural strength.[1]

Most of the fleet found new use with other rescue services. One was transported to New Zealand in 1993, and six were sold between 1994 and 2002 for use in South Africa.[2]


The Brede was built with a glass reinforced plastic (GRP) hull, a strengthened version of a commercial design by Lochin Marine of Rye, Sussex. It was fitted with twin 203 hp diesel engines which gave it a top speed of 20 knots (37 km/h) which was faster than any other all-weather lifeboat in the fleet until the introduction of the Severn and Trent classes in 1991. It had an operating range of 140 nautical miles (260 km).[4]

The hull was divided into five watertight compartments and spaces were filled with buoyant materials which combined with a watertight GRP wheelhouse to give it a self-righting capability. A survivors' cabin was sited forward of the wheelhouse with eight seats and a stretcher could be carried in the wheelhouse which had seats for the four crew members.[4]

RNLI fleet

All built by Lochin Marine, Rye

ON[lower-alpha 1] Op. No.[lower-alpha 2] Name Built In service Station Further use[2]
1066 33-01 1981 Trials boat 1981–1982. Sold for use as a workboat at Yarmouth.
1080 33-02 Ann Richie 1982 1982–1987 Oban Broken up 1988.
1083 33-03 Leonore Chilcott 1982 1982–1988 Fowey Sold 1990 for use as a diving support boat at Littlehampton. In 2000 she took up duty as a pilot boat at Braye.[3]
1084 33-04 Philip Vaux 1982 1983–1989 Girvan Sold 1990 for use at Poole but since believed moved to Spain.
1087 33-05 Merchant Navy 1983 1983–1987
Relief fleet
Sold 1990; in use as a pleasure boat Lyonesse on the River Hamble.[2]
Sold to South Africa in 2012 for further use as a lifeboat.[5]
1088 33-06 Caroline Finch 1983 1983–1994 Exmouth Sold 1994 to South Africa.[6]
1089 33-07 Inner Wheel 1983 1983–2001
Sold 2002 to South Africa.
1090 33-08 Foresters Future 1984 1984–1986
Relief fleet
Sold 2002 to South Africa.
1101 33-09 Enid of Yorkshire 1984 1984–1997 Relief fleet Sold 1997 to South Africa.
1102 33-10 Nottinghamshire 1984 1984–1988
Sold 1997 to South Africa.
1104 33-11 Safeway 1985 1985–2001 Calshot Sold 2002 to South Africa.
1105 33-12 Amateur Swimming Associations 1985 1985–1989
Relief fleet
Sold September 1993 to New Zealand.
  1. ON is the RNLI's Official Number of the boat.
  2. Op. No. is the RNLI's Operational Number of the boat carried on the hull.

Other fleets

New Zealand

Name[2] RNLI ON Built Sold Station
Sealord Rescue 1105 1985 1993 Port Nelson

South Africa

Second-hand Bredes operated by the National Sea Rescue Institute in South Africa.

Name[2] RNLI ON Built To NSRI Station Notes
Eikos Rescuer II 1104 1985 2002 Lifeboat Rescue 5, Durban.
Nadine Gordimer 1089 1983 2002 Lifeboat Rescue 8, Hout Bay Recently been refitted and returned to the water. The work carried out was started at the end of March 2012[7] and completed on the 20th of February 2013.[8]
Sanlam Rescuer 1102 1984 1997 Lifeboat Rescue 9, Gordons Bay Destroyed by fire whilst awaiting refit in a boat building factory in December 2010.
South Star 1088 1983 1994 Lifeboat Rescue 17, Hermanus
Spirit of Safmarine III 1090 1984 2002 Lifeboat Rescue 10, Simon's Town
Spirit of Toft 1101 1984 1997 Lifeboat Rescue 6, Port Elizabeth
Rescue 15 1087 1983 2012[5] Lifeboat Rescue 15, Mossel Bay[9] Recently been refitted along with Hout Bay's Nadine Gordimer.[10] The vessel was returned to the water on the 6th of November 2012.[11]


  1. 1 2 Kipling, Ray; Kipling, Susannah (2006). Never Turn Back. Stroud: Sutton Publishing. ISBN 0-7509-4307-6.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Denton, Tony (2009). Handbook 2009. Shrewsbury: Lifeboat Enthusiasts Society. pp. 28–31.
  3. 1 2 Leach, Nicholas (2002). Fowey Lifeboats: An Illustrated History. Stroud: Tempus Publishing. pp. 63–69. ISBN 0-7524-2378-9.
  4. 1 2 Wake-Walker, Edward; Deane, Heather; Purches, Georgette (1989). Lifeboat! Royal National Lifeboat Institution. Shepperton: Ian Allan. p. 41. ISBN 0-7110-1835-9.
  5. 1 2 "Ex RNLI Deep Sea Rescue boat arrives". National Sea Rescue Institute. 2012-02-02. Retrieved 2012-12-03.
  6. Salsbury, Alan (2010). A History of the Exmouth Lifeboats. Wellington, Somerset: Halsgrove. pp. 107–120. ISBN 978-0-85704-073-2.
  9. "Rescue 15 ready for trip to Mossel Bay". National Sea Rescue Institute. 2012-11-27. Retrieved 2012-12-03.

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Brede class lifeboats.
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 9/24/2015. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.