Wells Lifeboat  RNLI Lifeboats Wells Norfolk UK
Wells Lifeboat

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Welcome to Wells RNLI

Wells-next-the-Sea RNLI Lifeboat Station houses an all-weather lifeboat and an inshore lifeboat to save lives and assist with emergencies around Wells and off the North Norfolk coast. Manned by volunteer crews, the boats are ready to launch within minutes, 24 hours a day, every day of the year. This website will tell you more about the station and give you a taste of what we do and the traditions of the lifeboat service.

Recent Services

29 September 2015

Humber Coastguard contacted the station requesting the launch of the ALB to assist the local MFV Comrade with two persons on-board. The vessel was on passage from Wells to Lowestoft and had suffered engine failure due to an oil pump failure north of Weybourne beach. Launching at 08:20 the ALB was alongside the Comrade at 09:08 where a tow was established for passage back to Wells. With just sufficient water in the harbour channel on the last of the ebb tide the casualty was moored safely alongside the Outer Harbour pontoons at 11:10. The ALB was re-housed, re-fuelled and ready for service at 12:15.

Weather Part cloudy Visibility Good Wind ENE2-3 Sea Slight

Recovering the lifeboat after service to MFV Comrade, 29 September 2015

Recovering the lifeboat on Wells beach, 9 September 2015

20 September 2015

Wells ILB was launched after a single-handed 12m yacht Shanty went aground at the harbour entrance, early on the flood tide. The rising tide had lifted the Shanty, on passage from Grimsby, just before the lifeboat arrived on scene but the yacht's rudder and steering gear had been damaged in the grounding and she was unable to maneouvre. A crew member was transferred aboard and the ILB took the yacht in tow but had to stand off until there was sufficient tide in the entrance channel for the yacht's 1.6m draft. The Shanty was safely brought into the outer harbour and moored up at 22.15.

Weather Part cloudy Visibility Good Wind SW2 Sea Slight

12 September 2015

Humber Coastguard requested an ILB launch following a report from the NCI Lookout that two persons were cut off by the tide on the north side of the harbour channel adjacent to the boathouse. The NCI Watchkeepers had been informed the two persons had crossed the channel at low ebb and that one of them was a non-swimmer. With the tide flooding they were instructed to remain in their current position until help arrived. Launching at 16:13, the ILB landed the casualties on the main beach at 16:17 but before returning for recovery was requested from the boathouse to speak to several people seen on the west side sands to advise them to return to the beach because of the possible danger of the flooding tide. The ifeboat was re-fuelled, re-housed and ready for service at 16:45.

Weather Part cloudy Visibility Good Wind SW3 Sea Slight

9 September 2015

At 04:40, Humber Coastguard requested the ALB to launch to the sailing vessel Sheer Mist which had run aground on the east side of the channel near the No 4 buoy while departing Wells. At the time, the ALB was on the beach being recovered from the previous service and had to complete the recovery before it could be relaunched. MFV Charles William went to assist the casualty but was unable to pull her off. The windfarm vessel Lucinda also went to assist. The ALB relaunched at 05:02 at which time the Lucinda had succeeded in pulling the casualty into the deep water channel.

The ALB was on scene at 05.06 and the other vessels were stood down. The ALB escorted the casualty out to sea to continue her passage before turning for home at 05.30. The ALB was recovered at 05.50 and was re-housed, re-fuelled and ready for service by 07:00.

Weather Fine Visibility Good Wind NW1-2 Sea Slight/Moderate

Phalarope enters Wells outer harbour under tow of the Wells Lifeboat, 9 September 2015

Wells lifeboat bringing Phalarope into outer harbour, 9 September 2015

8 September 2015

Humber Coastguard requested a lifeboat launch to assist the 40ft sailing vessel Phalarope which had engine failure 13 miles east of Wells and required assistance to reach and enter the port. The casualty was making approx 3 knots under sail on a heading of 315 but had lost engine power and was concerned it might soon lose battery power for lights and radio comms. The ALB left the boathouse at 21.20 for a low water launch at Holkham. She reached the casualty at 22.50 and proceeded to escort the yacht, still under sail, to Holkham Bay to await for the tide.

At 00.30 both vessels were at anchor. At 03.00 a tow was set up and the vessels proceeded on the flood tide to the outer harbour where the casualty was safely made fast. The ALB was in the process of recovering at 04.40 when Humber Coastguard requested a launch to assist SV Sheer Mist aground in the harbour channel.

Weather Cloudy Visibility Good Wind NW2-3 Sea Slight/Moderate

4 September 2015

An ILB launch request was received from Humber Coastguard at 10:34 after a women and a dog were reported to be cut off by the tide on marshes east of Garborough Creek at Stiffkey. The crew were paged at 10:37. With a strong WNW wind and swell on the harbour bar it was decided to take the ILB through the creek system to reach the casualty being spring tides and close to high water. The local Coastguard were on scene to assist the ILB. Launching at 10:47 the ILB negotiated the creeks and arrived on scene at 11:10 where the casualty and dog were taken on-board and landed at the marsh head into the care of the Coastguard team. Departing at 11:17, after checking no medical attention was required, the ILB returned to station at 11:31.

Weather Part cloudy Visibility Good Wind WNW5-6 Sea Moderate/Rough

Latest News

RNLI Golf Day raises record amount

Tue 22 Sep 2015

Fifty-two players took part in a mixed golf competition on 27 August and raised over £4000 for the new lifeboat at Wells, including £1000 from a charity auction and raffle which Barclays Bank have again offered to match with an additional donation of £1000.

The winners were Sue Hutchings, Rosemary Boyer, Keith Boyer from Weston Park and Martin Dunnell from Royal Cromer with a net score of 58.4. Second were Bernie Vaughan, Liz Vaughan, Lindsay Woods and Kevin Pratt, with a net score of 58.8. The team from Barclays, namely Tom Hall, Paul Knights, Will Sommerville and Raymond Johnson were third with 60.9 net.

The organisers. Sue Edwards and Wells Lifeboat Press Officer John Mitchell, would like to thank all who took part and the local businesses who provided sponsorship and donations. 

The event was originally started in 2003 by Sue Edwards and has previously been hosted at Cosstessey, Bawburgh and Dunston Hall Golf Clubs as well as its current venue at Weston Park outside Norwich. In the last four years, over £14,000 has been raised for the RNLI. The present organisers intend to stand down this year and there may also be a need to relocate to a new course next year. If anyone would like to take up the reins and help organise and run the event next year, please get in touch with John Mitchell (via our contact page) or with Sue Edwards; it would be great to keep this popular and successful fund-raising event going in future...

Picture shows winning team of Martin Dunnell (Royal Cromer GC), Keith Boyer, Sue Hutchings and Rosemary Boyer (from Weston Park GC) with organiser Sue Edwards and Wells Lifeboat Operations Manager, Chris Hardy.

Our lifeboat back from refit

Tue 15 Sep 2015

Wells Lifeboat leaves Poole All Weather Lifeboat Centre on 14/9 for the journey back to Wells

Wells Lifeboat leaves Poole All Weather Lifeboat Centre on 14/9 for the journey back to WellsSarah Powell

Wells' Mersey-class lifeboat 12-003 Doris M Mann of Ampthill has returned to the station following a minor refit over the summer at the new All-weather Lifeboat Centre in Poole. The boat travelled by road from Poole to Lowestoft where it was lifted in at the Haven Marina.

Coxswain Allen Frary and crew made an early start on 15 September from Wells with the relief lifeboat 12-005 to swap the boats over at Lowestoft, returning with 12-003 for the evening tide.

This should be 12-003's last scheduled refit before she is replaced by a new Shannon class lifeboat, having served the station now since 1990.

Joint exercise with Sheringham Shoal windfarm

10 Sep 2015

Both Wells and Cromer lifeboats joined in with 'Exercise Sheringham Response' on 10 September, a simulated emergency at the Sheringham Shoal windfarm to test procedures for a major incident at the windfarm. With a simulated stretcher casualty needing to be safely evacuated from one of the turbines, the exercise provided valuable experience and practice for staff and crews at the windfarm, RNLI and coastguard.

Pictures by Wells crew member Fred Whitaker

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Exercise Launches

Our next scheduled exercise launches are shown below. You are welcome to come and watch the lifeboats launch on the beach at the front of the lifeboat house... but please ensure you keep well to one side and that children are supervised. Exercises may be cancelled or rescheduled at short notice due to operational reasons.

Friday 9th October 17:00

Monday 26th October 17:00

Shannon Appeal

We are running an appeal to raise funds for a new Shannon class lifeboat for Wells and the North Norfolk coast. The appeal will run until the end of 2015 and aims to raise £250,000 towards the cost of a new all-weather lifeboat.

More information...

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The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is a charity, registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). This website is managed and maintained by local volunteers at Wells-next-the-Sea Lifeboat Station and is not the main RNLI site. All text and images copyright (C)2005-2014 RNLI Wells Lifeboat Station, or as indicated, and may not be downloaded, copied or reproduced elsewhere without prior permission of the station or the relevant copyright holder. Site Manager