RNLI launch to mud rescue during 200th anniversary celebrations

Volunteer crews from Hoylake and New Brighton RNLI were on their way to join a celebratory flotilla in the River Mersey when they were paged to reports of a person stuck in the mud.

At 11.17 am both crews were en route to join a flotilla of RNLI lifeboats celebrating the RNLI’s 200th anniversary. HM Coastguard tasked Hoylake RNLI’s hovercraft Hurley Spirit and New Brighton’s inshore lifeboat, Charles Dibdin to a report of a person stuck in the mud just off Leasowe Castle.

Hoylake’s hovercraft arrived on scene and proceeded to the casualty, who was waist-deep in mud. New Brighton’s inshore lifeboat provided cover. Wirral’s Coastguard Rescue team were already on site and worked with the volunteers from Hoylake RNLI to free the casualty. The casualty was then placed on a stretcher, taken aboard the Hovercraft and transferred ashore.

The New Brighton lifeboat was then able to join the flotilla, with all-weather lifeboats from Hoylake and Lytham St Annes, and West Kirby’s inshore lifeboat.

Hoylake’s hovercraft crew on return from shout to rescue casualty stuck in the mud. Credit: RNLI/Hoylake

James Whiteley, Hovercraft Commander at Hoylake RNLI said, “We were looking forward to celebrating the RNLI’s 200th birthday as part of the flotilla. But we knew when the call came, we were needed elsewhere. We worked as part of a team with our fellow RNLI volunteers from New Brighton and the local Coastguard Recuse Team to free a casualty who had become stuck in the mud.

“The call was also a timely reminder of the long tradition we were celebrating, of RNLI volunteer crews around the coastline dropping everything to assist those in need.”

Hoylake’s volunteer Hovercraft crew were later able to join in celebrations at station, with a slice of cake made especially by one of the volunteer crew.

Image: RNLI Lifeboats join the Mersey Flotilla. Credit: Stratus Imagery/Sam Cranham

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