RNLI Sunderland
Thursday 21 October 2021

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History of Sunderland Lifeboat Station (1900 - 1999)


The South Outlet lifeboat house was destroyed by fire on 25 July. The house had been built in 1871 at a cost of ?450.


A Grant of ?5 was paid to the widow of  Lifeboat Crew member, T Davison, who died after running to lifeboat house in anticipation of lifeboat launch on the 11th May. A subsequent grant of ?68 was made to his widow.


Sunderland's first motor lifeboat, the J McConnell Hussey which had previously been stationed at Folkestone and Tynemouth, is of historic interest, for she was the first experimental motor lifeboat in the Institution's fleet.
She was built originally in 1893 as a pulling and sailing lifeboat of the self-righting type, being a gift of Miss Curling of London.


South Outlet and Hendon Beach Stations closed.


New lifeboat house and slipway on a piled structure constructed at a cost of ?2,000.


Centenary Vellum awarded to station.


Associated Link

Edward and Isabella Irwin

A new "Watson" class lifeboat was stationed at Sunderland, named "RNLB Edward and Isabella Irwin". This new boat was built at a cost of ?7,378.  To accomodate the new boat a new boathouse was built at a cost of ?10,717.


150 Year Vellum presented to the Station. (see below)


150 Year Vellum Presentation150 Year RNLI Vellum
Vellum Presentation150 Vellum - 1953


Associated Link

William Myers and Sarah Jane Myers

A new "Watson" class lifeboat was stationed at Sunderland, named "RNLB William Myers and Sarah Jane Myers". Built at a cost of ?40,500, which was provided out of a legacy from the late Miss Emily Myers.


First D Class lifeboat put on Station at Sunderland in May 1966.


Long Service awards presented to Coxswain William Milburn and 2nd Cox S.Cahill.


Long Service awards presented to 2nd Cox John.R.Todd and Ken O'Neill.


A Thanks of the Institution inscribed on Vellum was accorded to Helmsman Michael A Tighe and a Vellum Service Certificate awarded to crew member Alan Dixon when they rescued a man together with sailboard in difficulties near Sunderland outer piers in a strong northerly gale and very rough sea on 4 November.


A Letter of Thanks signed by the Chairman of the Institution was sent to Coxswain Anthony Lee for his vigilance and determination in cold, wet and rough conditions on the night of 6 March when he rescued two men from the missing fishing vessel Sea Fox after a four hour search.


Associated Link

Wavy Line

Watson class lifeboat withdrawn and replaced by a Waveney class lifeboat "RNLB Wavy Line".


New D class lifeboat (D-470) is placed on service on 7th September.


Associated Link

Read full Service Report

Framed Letters of Appreciation signed by the Chairman of the Institution, Sir Michael Vernon was awarded to Crew members David Graham, Gerard McGill and Ian Donkin for the service on 4 August when the D class lifeboat rescued three boys stranded on a ledge half way up the cliff in a small cove to the west of Marsden Rock.


New Trent class lifeboat placed on service at Sunderland on 28th March '97


New boathouse for D class Lifeboat completed in May '98 - Picture


Associated Links

Read Full Service Report or Press Report 
or Press Report (2)

A Framed Letter of Thanks signed by the Chairman was sent to Helmsman Michael Cowe and to crew members Martin Barry and Brian Clark-Barkess for a service on 20th December 1998.


Letter of Thanks PresentationChairman's Letter of ThanksJim returns to the lifeboat station to say Thank You - (c) Sunderland Echo
Presentation - Chairman's LetterChairman's LetterThank You!!

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