Mary Berry, Cream Teas and RNLI Salcombe

Although the weather had turned a little cooler the anticipation of Mary Berry joining the Salcombe RNLI Lifeboat Fundraising Crew certainly drew a big crowd to the Woodcot House & Gardens, in Salcombe this Saturday.

After a brief welcome and introduction by Mr. Andrew Arthur, Lifeboat Operations Manager, Mary opened the event at 11:00 am, after which the many visitors were able to relax in the stunning gardens of Woodcot House, enjoy al-fresco cream tea and enjoy the music of the Salcombe Jazz Trio. There were also several events laid on for the younger visitors, organised again by the Fundraising Crew.

Mary returned at 2:30 pm to give an interesting recollection of the many wonderful times she and her family had spent in Salcombe over the years, before taking a wide range of questions from the audience.

Before leaving Salcombe Mary made a point of visiting the Salcombe RNLI Crew room where she was introduced to Coxswain Chris Winzar before being given a tour of both the in-shore and all-weather lifeboats.

When asked for his thoughts on the day Simon Linsley, Chair of the Fundraising Crew said “What a great day made possible by the appearance of Mary Berry and the many fundraisers who worked so hard throughout the day. Simon also wanted to thank the many business in the area for their support, The Bakehouse, Salcombe Dairy, Salcombe Coffee Shop, Salcombe Deli, Luscombe Drinks, Salcombe Co-op, Marchant Petit, Tesco Kingsbridge & Salcombe Trading”.


RNLI Salcombe played host to The Chernobyl Children

RNLI Salcombe played host to The Chernobyl Children who were making their annual visit to the town. Full time RNLI Mechanic, Sam Viles and Lifeboat Operations Manager Andrew Arthur gave the children a tour of the All-Weather Lifeboat. For the children the visit gives them a chance to experience many of the things we take for granted but which for them may only be a dream.


A fitting tribute to the Salcombe RNLI volunteer crews of yesteryear.

This weekend saw a tribute paid to the RNLI Salcombe volunteer crews, families and supporters who have served Salcombe and the surrounding areas for the past 150 years.

Saturday’s events started with a tribute to those early crew members who, upon hearing the maroon that would signal a lifeboat launch was required, to run the 1.5 miles from Salcombe to the South Sands lifeboat station in all conditions to launch. Sixteen members of today’s crew re-enacted that run and yes, they all finished. They then rowed two gigs, provided by Salcombe Estuary Rowing Club, back to Salcombe.

The theme of remembering the past continued through the day, with seven Historic Lifeboats moored alongside the Normandy pontoon and open to the many members of the public who had flocked to the town. Also, on hand were the RNLI F2F and Lifeguard teams sharing not only information on the RNLI but also passing on the many safety messages put out to help in the aim of Saving Lives at Sea.

Andrew Arthur, Salcombe Lifeboat Operations Manager, thanked all who had contributed to making the weekend such a success and achieving the aim of ‘a tribute to yesteryear’, with a special thanks to the Salcombe Yacht Club for their support.


Fisherman rescued from life raft

  Both Salcombe Lifeboats launched yesterday evening to their weekly training exercise, to a man in difficulty aboard his yacht. Little did they expect the exercise to turn into a response to an “Immediate Tasking” being received from the Coastguard, to a fishing vessel on fire, 5 nautical miles South West of Salcombe.

Both lifeboats were on scene within minutes, rescuing an uninjured fisherman from his life raft. Once confirmation of no further casualties was confirmed the ILB returned the casualty to shore and to his waiting family.

For safety reasons the ALB remained on scene until dusk.

Within minutes of the ALB being back on station and readied for service a second call from the Coastguard had the volunteer crew launching to assist the Dart Lifeboat crew who were attending to a 35’ sailing yacht aground in Start Bay.


Apri1 1st, 2019

RNLI Salcombe are pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Andrew Arthur to position of Lifeboat Operations Manager (LOM) following the appointment of Mr. Mark Dowie to Chief Executive of the RNLI in Poole.

In this voluntary role, Andrew will be responsible for the Salcombe lifeboat station, its boats, crew and day to day operations, working closely with Chris Winzar, the Lifeboat Coxswain and Sam Viles, the Lifeboat Mechanic.

Andrew, a former Royal Navy Lieutenant Commander Marine Engineer Officer, is still a keen sailor and has significant maritime and management experience to draw upon. Andrew now runs his own Bespoke Cabinet Making businesses in Salcombe.

As Lifeboat Operations Manager, Mark has managed a very busy 17 months for the Salcombe Lifeboats, launching 64 times in 2018 with several services being lifesaving and high profile. The crew was also featured in the last two series of the BBC’s documentary “Saving Lives at Sea”.

Simon Evans

It is with great sadness that Salcombe Lifeboat Station has to announce the passing of our former Operations Manager, Simon Evans. During his tenure as LOM, he made significant improvements to the operational infrastructure within the station that have enhanced the flow of information whilst either of our lifeboats have been out on service; many of these ideas have now been incorporated in other stations as a result. His planning and execution of the commemoration of the centenary of the disaster in 2016, was a real testament to his dedication to the remembrance of the commitment demonstrated by the crew throughout the years of the Institution. RIP

From coastal volunteer to Chief Executive:

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) has today – Wednesday 6 March 2019 – announced that its new Chief Executive will be Mark Dowie.

Mark is currently the Lifeboat Operations Manager at Salcombe RNLI in Devon, a voluntary role that he has held proudly since 2017, and will take up the post of Chief Executive of the lifesaving charity on Wednesday 15 May 2019.

In his role as a Lifeboat Operations Manager, Mark has been responsible for all the operations of a busy lifeboat station, and so he has first-hand experience of leading and volunteering within the RNLI.

Mark brings with him significant corporate leadership experience, having been a senior banking professional who was most recently Chief Executive Officer, Corporate & Institutional Banking, at Standard Chartered Bank. In this role he led the bank’s global wholesale banking business and was responsible for nearly 20,000 people in 62 countries around the world.

A former Royal Navy Supply Officer, Mark served between 1982 and 1990, leaving the service at the rank of Lieutenant. During his time in the Royal Navy, Mark served on the helicopter carrier RFA Reliant and HMS Illustrious.

In addition, Mark has owned and managed a successful marine services company and served as a magistrate in Devon. He is a keen sailor and a gyrocopter pilot.

Mark is also a trustee of the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity (RNRMC) and has provided leadership and financial support to youth charities in south London and a school and orphanage in Kenya.

Mark said: ‘I am delighted and incredibly proud to have been appointed as the RNLI’s new chief executive.

‘Having been an RNLI volunteer on the coast for the past two years, I know just what an incredible organisation this charity is. I’ve seen first-hand the dedication and commitment of the RNLI’s volunteers and staff to help save lives and keep people safe.’

Stuart Popham, Chairman of the RNLI, said: ‘I’m delighted to announce Mark Dowie as the RNLI’s new chief executive.

‘Mark has a range of impressive attributes and experience that he will bring to the role, including valuable experience as an RNLI volunteer.

‘He has a wealth of corporate leadership experience and a real affinity for the sea. I’m looking forward to working with Mark and am extremely confident that he will be a huge asset to the RNLI.

‘I’d also like to profusely thank our current Chief Executive, Paul Boissier, for his magnificent contribution over the last decade. He will leave the RNLI having achieved so much.’

The RNLI’s current chief executive, Paul Boissier, has been in post since 2009 and will leave the RNLI on Wednesday 15 May.

‘Salcombe and Hope Cove Lifeboat Stations – Celebrating 150 years’

The fascinating history of Salcombe and Hope Cove Lifeboat Stations has been brought to life in a new 162 page book written by Lifeboat Museum Curator, Roger Barrett and published by the RNLI in its Station History series. Read about our brave volunteers and their lifeboats, from the past to the present, and how they have battled the elements to bring people to safety. You’ll be gripped by the tales of courage and determination in the face of adversity and you’ll meet some real local characters, like Eddie Distin, who narrowly survived Salcombe Lifeboat Disaster and went on to lead the Salcombe crew for 29 years.  Over 160 illustrations. Available from the Lifeboat shop (weekends only until April 1st), Helly Hansen, Fortescue Inn, Salcombe DIY, Luscombe Maye, Will Bees Bespoke, Salcombe Yacht Club and Salcombe Garage. Price 8.95. Or order online by emailing  All profits will help the RNLI to save lives at sea.

Salcombe Brewery Company is supporting the RNLI

Salcombe Brewery Co is supporting the RNLI by donating 5p to them for every pint of their aptly-named Lifesaver sold in 2019, 150 years since Salcombe first established its own lifeboat station. The brewery owner, John Tiner, says: “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to support an important cause and help raise awareness of the invaluable role that the RNLI has played in our community for the last century and a half and to raise funds to support them in the continuation of this work.”  Lifesaver (ABV4,8%) is a tasty bronze coloured ale which boasts a pleasantly malty flavour with a smack of citrus and orange peel.  The initial citrus flavour gently fades into a subtle liquorice and toffee character with a floral finish.  It is available on draft in bars and restaurants throughout the South West.

RNLI Salcombe volunteer Crew member becomes Able Seaman Nathan Dundas RN.

After ten weeks of basic training at HMS Raleigh, Salcombe volunteer crew member Nathan Dundas was passed out as an Able Seaman in the Royal Navy on Friday 1st February 2019.

Joining the Lifeboat crew at seventeen Nathan became the second member of the family to be a part of the Salcombe crew, joining his Father Iain. Indeed, both had been on several ‘shouts’ together, one in particular where they were involved in the successful treatment and evacuation of a heart attack casualty.

Joining the Royal Navy had been a long-held ambition for Nathan and when the chance presented itself, as he was about to turn eighteen, there was no stopping him.

Although now a full-time member of the Royal Navy, Nathan has asked that he keep his position on the Lifeboat for as long as he can.