New Harwich RNLI rudders take command days after fainting

Days after losing consciousness as volunteer coxswain, Meredith Scanlon and Antony Charles took command of the Harwich RNLI inshore lifeboat for the first time, in separate incidents.

The first duty fell to Meredith when, on Tuesday September 14, she took command of the coastal lifeboat Atlantic 85 from Harwich RNLI.
Tierney, Harvey and Sonny Reid in a multi-agency search for a missing person, which lasted more than five hours and yielded a positive result.

Work closely with several Coast Guard Rescue Teams, Walton and Frinton RNLI, Harwich RNLI All Weather Lifeboat
Albert Brun, Essex Police, firefighters and a Coast Guard rescue helicopter, Meredith took it in her stride and reflected on her first duty:

“I found my first ‘cry’ quite exhilarating and intimidating at the same time, especially in front of
Hall shipyard in the Walton Backwaters. It was inspiring for my first service to be a multi-agency service, working alongside two other lifeboats, a rescue helicopter, several coast guard, police and fire rescue teams. . A real pleasure to work alongside the Walton lifeboat, not many people work alongside all of these agencies on their first call as a helm. ‘

Antony Charles didn’t have to wait long for his first duty as a bar either, just two days later at 6 p.m. on Thursday, September 16, when Harwich RNLI volunteers were invited by the British Coast Guard launch the inshore lifeboat to investigate a yacht, with a lone sailor on board, having engine trouble. Once there, it was clear that the safest course of action was to tow the yacht to the nearby Suffolk Marina where repairs could be made.

Antony and Meredith were both very experienced crew members when they began the helm program, in which the skills they already possessed were honed with a focus on commanding and managing an incident. .

Antoine went on to say:

“After being on the crew for over eight years, I thought the time was right to use that experience and knowledge to progress and become a coxswain. After a year of intensive training, including a week at RNLI College in Poole, and a significant number of assessments, I graduated as a coxswain on Tuesday September 7th alongside Meredith. I am now able to take command of the inshore rescue boat on search and rescue missions at sea. ‘

Peter Bull, Harwich RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager, commented:

“It was a pleasure to see Meredith and Antony pass out as coxswains after all the hard work and dedication they put into their training, which definitely put them in a good position for their first serves. “

Having two other volunteer coxswains to call on is a great asset for the resort. Being a busy station with 98 calls this year already, Meredith and Antony will no doubt help reduce the pressure on the existing volunteer coxswains, who have shown great dedication to ensuring that whatever the time of the day is day, we are ready to save lives at sea and help those in distress’

Visit for safety tips and advice on a range of coastal activities.

Notes to Editors

RNLI College in Poole is the home of RNLI training where volunteers from across the UK and Ireland are trained to become competent crew members. It is also a hotel and event venue like no other, where the public can come and stay alongside the volunteers in training, and often attend the training themselves. People can also book for a guided tour of the training center and the all-weather lifeboat center.

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact:

Richard Wigley, RNLI Harwich Volunteer Rescue Press Officer on 07903424698 or
[email protected],

Clare Hopps, regional media manager on 07824518641 or [email protected] or contact the RNLI press office on 01202 336789.

RNLI key figures

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a round-the-clock search and rescue service around the coasts of the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. The RNLI operates 238 lifeguard stations in the UK and Ireland and over 240 lifeguard units on beaches in the UK and the Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent from the Coast Guard and the government and depends on voluntary donations and bequests to maintain its rescue service. Since the founding of the RNLI in 1824, its crews and rescuers have saved more than 142,700 lives.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information, please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Press releases, videos and photos are available on the News Center.

Contact the RNLI – public inquiries

Members of the public can contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.

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