Faster, smarter lifeboats and new lifeboat stations for Welsh volunteers

The RNLI has confirmed plans to invest £42.5m on improving rescue facilities in four centres across Wales.

The registered charity will spend £10.8m on four new Tamar class lifeboats for Porthdinllaen, Moelfre, St Davids and The Mumbles and approximately £31.7m on associated shore works.

Porthdinllaen was first to receive its new lifeboat, John D Spicer, in August. The three remaining Welsh stations will see their Tyne class lifeboats being replaced with the faster, technologically advanced Tamar’s over the next two years.  

The south Wales lifeboats are expected to arrive once the boathouses have been built, with planning permission already granted for a new lifeboat station at The Mumbles and an application under consideration for Moelfre which would see work begin on a new station in the spring.

Compared to the Tyne class lifeboat, the Tamar is bigger – 16 metres as opposed to 14 – and has a faster response time, with a speed of 25, rather than 17 knots. The boat also has vastly improved computerised systems, which enables crew to control many of the lifeboat’s functions remotely from the safety of their seats.

RNLI Divisional Inspector of lifeboat for Wales, Colin Williams says:

“The Tamar class is the most technologically advanced lifeboat ever produced by the RNLI, we owe it to our volunteer crews to provide them with the very best lifeboats.”

Being able to provide these fantastic new lifeboats is thanks to very generous bequests for which we are eternally grateful.”