Displaying items by tag: Bangor
Newly married couple Jackie and Peter Gracey have presented RNLI Bangor Branch with a cheque for £1403.86. Three weeks ago Mr and Mrs Gracey held a wedding party at the Ballholme Yacht Club and in lieu of wedding presents they had requested that a donation be made to Bangor RNLI.
The presentation was made during the RNLI Bangor Lifeboat BBQ held at Ballyholme Yacht Club.
Jackie and Peter (centre) present their cheque
During the evening crew members and guests raised over £1500.00 for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution Bangor Branch.
RNLI senior helmsman Kyle Marshall said 'We would like to thank everyone who attended the crew BBQ and helped raise this fantastic sum of money.' He added 'Special thanks must go to Jackie and Peter; their very special wedding gift will save lives at sea, on behalf of the crew at Bangor Station I would like to wish them a very happy future together.'
Lifeboat volunteer crew at Bangor have launched on service numerous times this year, in all weather conditions and on many occasions during the hours of darkness.
The majority of call outs have been to leisure craft including canoes, powerboat, yachts and speedboats. Difficulties have been caused in the most part by mechanical failure of one kind or another. The rescues have been diverse, taking RNLI's Bangor Lifeboat right across Belfast Lough to Black Head and up towards Belfast as far as the M3 bridge over the River Lagan. Rescues are not always confined to boats in distress. A number this year have been related to suspected attempted suicides and missing persons, others have been to people stranded on rocks caught by the rising tide.
When Bangor yacht broker Lee Stevenson say it is 'a rare pleasure' to step aboard a yacht of and find her in such good order, its worth listening. That's the case with Sidewinder, a Twister 28 yacht that has just been added to Afloat's boats for sale site this week. 'The build quality is excellent and she's clean, tidy and well maintained – a credit not only to her current owners but to all of her previous owners and sailors' says Stevenson.
Fitted out in 1969 for a boat show, all of the joinery is completed to a very high standard and the interior is still in great condition. Sidewinder has just completed a circumnavigation of Ireland. The full spec inlcuding a downloadable file is here.
Our Boats for Sale website has been updated. We've listened to the needs of you, the buyers and sellers to bring you the site Ireland needs for boat trading.
Firstly, our aim is to generate Ireland's largest stock of quality boats for sale, in order to do this we've introduced a modest charge of €10 to list your boat for 60 days. We've simplified the steps involved to advertise your boat, and once you've walked through them here are some of the advantages your boat has to gain maximum exposure...
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With over 28 years of service as a volunteer with RNLI Bangor Lifeboat, Kyle has carried out numerous rescues missions which have resulted in the saving of many lives. For the past 15 years Kyle has been in command as senior helmsman onboard Bangor Lifeboat
Kyle and Paula at the Buckingham Palace Garden Party
Kyle said of the event "It was a privilege and an honour to be invited to such a prestigious event. I was very proud to be one of the people representing the RNLI at the Garden Party. It is satisfying to know that the work of the RNLI and its volunteers receives recognition for the vital work carried out by all our crewmembers. The Royal family were in attendance and it was thrilling to see them there. Both Paula and I had an excellent time and were delighted to be at the Palace Garden Party."
Concerns persist over the future for Northern Ireland’s coastguard service staff - despite the British government backing down from plans to close the Bangor search and rescue centre.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the Bregenz House station was given a reprieve under revised proposals to streamline the UK's coastguard network.
However the coastguard workers' union told the Belfast Telegraph that assurances must still be given to preserve "the same level of service”.
Ian Graham of the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union said: "The numbers they’re quoting in the proposals are not providing this service with enough staff.
"Lives are still at risk with these proposals, there isn’t one UK coastguard I have spoken to that doesn’t disagree with that. We need to keep fighting to safeguard the service. This was a small victory.”
The Belfast Telegraph has more on the story HERE.
Black guillemots have been driven out of their long-time homes around Bangor harbour - by hooded crows.
BBC News reports that the crafty crows have been raiding nesting holes throughout the harbour, and have almost eliminated this year's brood of guillemots - affectionately known as 'black penguins'.
"Often there's been the odd egg or chick which has disappeared but this year it's been extraordinary,' said black guillemot expert Dr Julian Greenwood. "It's been a virtual wipe-out."
Dr Greenwood plans to thwart the crows next year by fixing small pieces of plywood across the openings of nesting holes, keeping the predators out.
BBC News has more on the story HERE.
The decision to keep open Northern Ireland's only dedicated search and rescue base is a victory for people power, says the Belfast Telegraph.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the station at Bangor was saved from closure following a review of plans to streamline the UK's coastguard network.
In an editorial on Friday, the paper said: "Northern Ireland really is a place apart geographically and no-one was convinced that the waters around our coastline from Lough Foyle to Strangford and the inland waterways of Lough Neagh and Lough Erne could be safely monitored by what amounted to remote control if Belfast Coastguard was closed."
The preservation of the service at Bangor is also "a victory for common sense".
The paper added: "From now on every person plucked from the sea or the loughs will utter a heartfelt thanks to those who fought to keep the service locally-based and they will also praise Transport Minister Phillip Hammond for sparing it from closure."
Belfast Coastguard received the initial call from a concerned member of public who had observed a young girl standing on an outcrop of rocks and in distress.
Immediately on receiving this call, Belfast Coastguard requested RNLI Bangor Lifeboat to launch and proceed with utmost haste to Cove Bay which is on the southern shores of Belfast Lough.
Within minutes of the rescue pagers being activated, volunteer RNLI lifeboat crew had assembled and launched the lifeboat.
Upon arrival at Cove Bay, lifeboat crew quickly evaluated the situation. With waves breaking around the knees of the frightened child it was paramount that she be brought ashore as quickly as possible.
The lifeboat was manoeuvred close to the rock ledge and the child was plucked to safety.
The young girl was brought ashore at Groomsport Harbour and was given into the care of waiting paramedics
Dr Iain Dobie a, RNLI volunteer crewman involved in this rescue said 'Large swells created by passing fast ferries and large boats could have swept this young girl from the rocks. When exploring rock pools and the foreshore please take a minute and think about rising tides and large swells'. He added 'We're very happy that the young girl is now safely ashore'
Search and rescue operations from Northern Ireland's only dedicated coastguard centre are on the increase, the Belfast Telegraph reports.
The latest figures show that there were 50 per cent more callouts to the Bangor-based centre last year than in 2006.
Shipping Minister Mike Penning - who is behind controversial plans to streamline the UK's coastguard network, which could see Bangor either closed or reduced to daylight operation - also confirmed that more than a third of callouts were made at night.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the final decision on the coastguard proposals will be taken by 19 July.
On Wednesday 22nd June at 8.20pm Belfast Coastguard received information that an 18ft speedboat with 2 persons aboard had struck rocks close to Groomsport. Volunteer crew quickly assembled and launched RNLI Bangor Lifeboat which proceeded at full speed to the stricken vessel. Thankfully the two people onboard the stranded vessel were able to scramble safely ashore before the Lifeboat arrived on scene. Crew aboard the Lifeboat rigged a tow line and towed the speedboat to the safety of Groomsport Harbour.
On Saturday 25th June at 1.15pm volunteer RNLI crew were alerted by rescue pager that a 35ft yacht with 3 people onboard had lost all steering and required assistance. Belfast Coastguard gave the vessels location as 2½ nautical miles north east of Bangor Harbour. Bangor Lifeboat was launched and escorted the sailing vessel close to entrance of Bangor Harbour were a tow line was rigged. The yacht was then towed to the safety of Bangor Marina.
Kyle Marshall, senior RNLI volunteer helmsman at Bangor Lifeboat Station took this opportunity to stress five very important sea safety tips for anyone going afloat. He said. 'Always wear a lifejacket, secondly check your engine and fuel, thirdly tell others where you are going, fourthly carry some means of calling for help and final always check the weather and tides' He added 'We're happy that the crews aboard both vessels are now safely ashore'.
The final decision on plans to streamline the UK's network of coastguard centres will be taken next month, the News Letter reports.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the station at Bangor - Northern Ireland's only 24-hour search and rescue co-ordination centre - is at risk of closure under the proposed cuts.
Shipping Minister Mike Penning says the decision will be announced on 19 July, following the report of the Commons Transport Select Committee next week, after which a second consultation period will begin.
He reportedly told a Westminster debate last week that "no change is not an option".
Northern Ireland MPs voiced their opposition at the debate to any reduction of service at Bangor, with David Simpson of Upper Bann saying that it "would have a significant effect on the levels of service and rescue".
The News Letter has more on the story HERE.