Ramsgate Lifeboat
In an emergency, dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard
This is the official web site for the RNLI Ramsgate Lifeboat Station.

The RNLI exists to save lives at sea and is wholly supported by voluntary contributions.

We hope that you will enjoy your visit.

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Latest News

16th February 2020
Cheque presentation to the RNLI
RNLI Community Presenter and Ramsgate lifeboat archivist John Ray visited King Edward Court, Herne Bay on 14th. February where he was presented with a cheque for £1,200. The money had been raised during the past year by the King Edward Court Residents Association.

The residents had chosen the RNLI as ‘their’ 2019 charity and John had visited them at the request of Residents Association Chair Ian Devereux to talk about the charity’s work. Throughout the ensuing months the King Edward Court’s residents and staff had worked hard organising a number of fundraising events. This culminated in John being presented with a very generous cheque by King Edward Court supporter Thanet North MP Sir Roger Gale. John, on behalf of the RNLI, expressed his gratitude to all concerned.
Left to right Sir Roger Gale, Ian Devereux, John Ray
Photo by John Ray
15th February 2020
Multi-agency search for man overboard off Margate
Margate and Ramsgate RNLI lifeboats, a coastguard rescue helicopter and shore-based coastguards have carried out a search after reports of a man missing from a ship in the Margate Roads anchorage, around 2km north of Margate.

The Maltese-flagged LPG tanker contacted UK Coastguard around 6am this morning (Saturday 15 February) reporting one of its crew as being unaccounted for. He was last seen several hours previously and following a search of the ship it was assumed he was missing overboard.

A Mayday Relay message was broadcast, and a search initiated involving Margate and Ramsgate RNLI all-weather lifeboats, a coastguard rescue helicopter from Lydd Airport, a Royal Navy warship and Margate Coastguard Rescue Team.

A large area up to around eight miles offshore was searched by the sea and air units and around seven hours after the initial call a body was recovered from the sea by the Margate all-weather lifeboat. The lifeboat returned to station and the body handed into the care of local police officers.
Margate RNLI searching by Mark Stamford.
5th January 2020

RNLI Ramsgate Lifeboat is currently a Co-op Local Cause attached to the Co-op Grange Road, Co-op Funeral Care & Co-op Petrol Minster. As part of this partnership visits to the Lifeboat Station are being arranged so the Co-op staff can have a good understanding as to how the funds being raised are being used. The focus for this round are training for the new members of the crew and resources for the extensive Education programme run by our Education Team. Today it was a great pleasure for us all to welcome Jo from Co-op Grange Road to be shown around by our Visits team and meet our Mechanic Phill and Coxswain Ian.
Photos by Sarah Hewes
13th December 2019

The Betty's 5p Pots for the year were collected from the Northwood Women’s Institute on Tuesday evening. The total raised was £100.85 which is a fantastic total and very much appreciated.

Photo by Maxine Morgan
13th December 2019

Sincere thanks to Jason and the team at the Mariners Bar.

Following on from raising £131.45 at their recent Carols by Candlelight, they are now running a Raffle for a superb Hamper to raise further funds for RNLI Ramsgate, which is £3 a strip. The draw for the Raffle is on Christmas Eve.

Photo by Sarah Hewes
13th December 2019

RAMSGATE RNLI station were presented today (13th December) with a cheque for £2000 from the Atlantic Avengers Rowing Duo John Wilson and Ricky Reina, both from Folkestone.

Back in February 2016 when Ricky was recovering from a knee operation, he could never have dreamed that he would one day row across the Atlantic. As part of his recuperation he was training on an indoor rowing machine at the gym, where he met John Wilson. John was a specialist in indoor rowing, and the pair hit it off. Between them they set a record for indoor rowing, four days non stop, then they decided to try rowing on water.

They bought themselves a 9 metre long, three quarter ton,two man canoe, a Rossiter Ocean II, called Sic Parvis Magna - Small but Mighty. This three year old canoe already had a pedigree as had been used to row the Atlantic and also around Britain.

The duo decided to take a year out of work to train for the crossing, moving from indoors to the Lakes at Lydd and then to Ramsgate Harbour where they would row for 5-6 hours at a  time out at sea. The reason for Ramsgate in particular, not their home port of Folkestone, was that the strong tides across the entrance to the harbour meant that they were able to train in challenging conditions.

One day when they were out practising a member of the public raised the alarm, believing that kayakers were in difficulty. Ramsgate RNLI’s inshore lifeboat was launched to assist them but the volunteer crew realised as they approached who the rowers were and after a quick check and a wave returned back to base.

With little support, other than their families, the rowers approached Leven Brown, who is a British Ocean Racer holding five Guinness World Records. He was able to advise them how to prepare for the mammoth task ahead.

So on November 27 2018 they set off from Cadiz in Spain in fairly miserable conditions, and their journey down to the Canaries was wet and damp. Also the lack of sun meant that their solar panels for running their equipment didn’t work so for the first month it was back to basics using a compass and chart. They had 2 hour shifts at rowing, and their two hours off were spent trying to sleep, doing squats to keep their leg muscles working, and most importantly keeping clean, as sweat and salt can cause nasty sores. It took them two months to reach the halfway point! Luckily for the first part of the trip they were very civilised with a glass of wine every evening with their rehydrated meal. However after that their store of 25 litres of red wine, 3 litres of rum and a few beers ran out. They did manage to catch and cook two fish whilst they were crossing which made a welcome change to their diet.

Christmas Day was celebrated by opening little parcels from their families and eating a few treats, and then they stopped rowing at 3pm to enjoy a few beers and watch the dolphins play in the water.

Not every day was so relaxing however, some days in bad weather they were unable to row, and at one point they spent four days locked in the very small cabin just off Tenerife riding out a storm. At this point they were “moonwalking” as they called it, which meant going Backwards! And once they were mid Atlantic they encountered nightly squalls, using when John was rowing! However they didn’t last very long.

The last half of the journey was much smoother and completed in one month and they arrived in Falmouth Harbour, Antigua on 23 February 2019. Their families were there to meet them and this happened to be Ricky’s son Barney’s 8th birthday. Apparently he was not happy at all being woken up at 5am to meet his dad and said it was the worst day ever, however his tears of frustration soon changed to tears of joy when he saw his dad. The two men were exhausted, and hungry for some proper food. Ricky managed to eat four cheeseburgers and chips for his first meal, but he deserved it as he had dropped from 109kg to 79kg during the journey. John, in a leaner position to start with still lost 5kg.

John now holds the Guinness World Record for the oldest man to row from Continental Europe to Antigua at the grand old age of 58. The pair hold the record for the first male pair to row from Continental Europe to Antigua a distance of approximately 4500 miles and the title they are most proud of is, despite all their hardships, they are the fastest out of any category of rowers to row across.

They raised over £40,000 sponsorship during their event and wanted to present RAMSGATE RNLI with a portion of it for all their support whilst they trained in Ramsgate. As Ricky said ‘ it was just great knowing that the RNLI were there in case things did go wrong’

They have now set up a trust where local sportsman can apply for grants, look them up under Atlantic Avengers on YouTube, Facebook and on AtlanticAvengers.com.
The pair in Ramsgate Harbour
Arrival into Antigua
Cheque presentation
Photo by Sarah Hewes
News Archive

Recent Launches

Service Call 1
15th February @ 06:28 AWB launched at the request of UK Coastguard to assist with a search for a report of a missing person from a commercial vessel. Margate AWB and Coastguard helicopter are also in attendance.

At around 12:00 Margate AWB found a body matching the description of the missing crewman. All assets then returned to their home stations.
Photo by Sarah Hewes
Service Call 64
16th December @ 07:28 AWB launched at the request of UK Coastguard to a report of red flares being sighted by commercial shipping, 42 miles NE of Ramsgate.

On scene the AWB found a liferaft which had been occupied by 2 persons from a sunken vessel. They had been in the liferaft overnight and taken aboard a cargo ship whilst the AWB made its way to the scene. They were then air lifted by Rescue 163 (Coastguard Helicopter) and taken to Dover Coastguard Station.

Once UK Coastguard were happy that no further persons were missing, released the AWB to returned to Ramsgate with the liferaft.
Service Call 63
7th December @ 04:09 ILB launched at the request of UK Coastguard to assist other emergency services (two fire engines a rescue team and police) at Ramsgate’s East Pier this morning after a man caught his leg in the Jubilee steps and ended up hanging upside down.

Using a rescue sling the attending emergency services managed to release the man from the steps and lower him safely into the ILB.

Once aboard the ILB he was then brought ashore and handed over to the awaiting ambulance.
Service Call 62
6th December @ 12:29 AWB launched at the request of UK Coastguard to a 32.2m bean trawler with engine failure, 20 miles NE of Ramsgate, with 7 person on board. AWB was tasked to stand by the beam trawler ensuring its safety until a tug arrived on scene from Ramsgate. Once the tug arrived and were happy that the tow was attached, the AWB was released and returned to station. Weather on scene force 6-7.
Service Call 61
30th November @ 21:36 ILB requested by UK Coastguard to be at immediate readiness in case their assistance was required by other emergency personnel attending a situation. ILB stood down @ 22:00.
Service Call 60
25th October @ 05:20 AWB launched at the request of UK Coastguard to assist Walmer Lifeboat who had been on scene since 02:00, with a yacht aground on the Goodwin Sands, East of Walmer Lifeboat Station. As the crew of the yacht had been taken off by UK Coastguard helicopter, the Walmer Lifeboat transferred 2 of their crew aboard the yacht to assist with attaching a tow line and assess for any damage. By this time the yacht had re-floated and after having attached the line the Ramsgate AWB then towed the casualty to Ramsgate with Walmer Lifeboat escorting. Once inside Ramsgate Harbour the tow was transferred to Walmer Lifeboat who berthed the casualty onto a pontoon, allowing Ramsgate AWB to returned to station.
Photo by Ramsgate RNLI
Service Archive

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Copyright 1999-2020 by Clive Lawford (e-mail). All Rights Reserved.
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A charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736).
Charity number CHY 2678 in the Republic of Ireland.