Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

Displaying items by tag: Union Hall

Experts have been puzzled by reports of strange tidal activity on the South Coast at the weekend, as reports.

On Saturday afternoon (18 June), Union Hall in West Cork saw levels in its harbours drop by as much as 70cm in a mere five minutes, before the waters flooded back — and similar incidents were reported in Wexford and across the Irish Sea in Pembrokeshire.

The bizarre situation has baffled experts, with some suggesting it could be linked to earthquakes off the Azores.

But one oceanographer believes it could be the result of an extremely rare conflation of separate atmospheric events.

Gerard McCarthy told CorkBeo that the surprise tidal moves may be the effect of a meteotsunami — a large wave caused by stormy conditions at sea — combined with the natural sloshing action, or seiching, of the waters at Union Hall.

CorkBeo has more on the story HERE.

Published in Weather
Tagged under

Cork County Council has engaged a contractor for the removal of the wreck of the fishing trawler, MV Sceptre, at Union Hall, West Cork and work has commenced.

The wreck will be removed by barge for transport to an overseas licensed facility to be disposed of environmentally Council says.

Published in West Cork
Tagged under

The volunteer crew at Union Hall RNLI were requested to launch their inshore Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Christine and Raymond Fielding at 12.15pm on Monday (13 June) to a 10m fishing vessel with two people onboard that had got propped off The Stags.

The lifeboat, under helm Michael Limrick with crew Paddy Moloney and Darren Collins, launched eight minutes later from the West Cork fishing village in a westerly breeze with moderate sea conditions.

Once on scene, the lifeboat crew carried out an assessment and it was determined, due to the casualty vessel being propped, that a tow should be established. The vessel was towed to the nearest safe port of Union Hall arriving at 2.35pm.

Following the callout, Jim Moloney, Union Hall RNLI deputy launching authority said: “It is always advisable to call the coastguard on 112/999 if you see someone in trouble on or near the water — wear a lifejacket, carry a means of communication, wear suitable clothing for the trip at sea and enjoy your time on the coast over the coming months.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

The volunteer Union Hall RNLI crew in West Cork were requested to launch their inshore Atlantic 85 lifeboat Christine and Raymond Fielding, by the Irish Coast Guard at 7.56 pm on Sunday 24th April to a 33-foot vessel with two persons on board with engine difficulty.

The lifeboat under helm Chris Collins with crew Paddy Moloney, Sean Walsh and Riona Casey, launched at 8.04 pm, in South East force 4/5 moderate to rough sea conditions at the time, Once on scene, an assessment was carried out by our crew and due to the engine difficulties, a tow was established and the vessel was escorted to the nearest safe port of Union Hall, where the lifeboat was recovered at 11.00 pm.

Following the call out, Peter Deasy, Union Hall RNLI Deputy Launch Authority said: ‘It is always advisable to call the Coast Guard on 112/999 if you see someone in trouble on or near the water, wear a life jacket, carry a means of communication, wear suitable clothing for the trip at sea, and enjoy your time on the coast over the coming months.’ Also we would like to congratulate Riona on her first call-out as a volunteer crew member here in Union Hall.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

Following recommendations from an independent inspection of the Old Pier at Keelbeg in Union Hall, Cork County Council says that “in order to improve safety” it is obliged to close the pier to public access.

The move has been met with dismay from the local community, with Myross Rowing Club among those calling for the pier to be upgraded rather than closed entirely.

It its reasoning, the club lists the pier’s long history and role in Union Hall’s heritage along with its use for recreational purposes and as a shelter for vessel in southeasterly winds, as well as providing access for fishing boats and leisure craft spilling over from “an already overcrowded new pier”.

It also highlights that funding has been secured for upgrades on other small piers along the West Cork coast and asks: “Why not Union Hall?”

Written comments, remarks and suggestions on the council’s plans can be submitted to the Harbour Master, Harbour Master’s Office, Skibbereen, P81 RC 21 or by email to [email protected] by close of business this Wednesday 13 April.

Published in Coastal Notes
Tagged under

Union Hall RNLI in West Cork launched to a speedboat in difficulty in Glandore Harbour on Saturday, March 2th.

The 16-foot speedboat with three persons on board had lost power between Adam and Eve at the entrance to Glandore harbour.

The Atlantic 85 Christine and Raymond Fielding under helm Michael Limrick with crew Darren Collins, Liam Limrick and Sean Walsh launched in South East force 5 moderate to rough sea conditions,

Within a few minutes of the pagers being activated, and were on scene where the vessel was drifting ashore. A tow was established and the vessel was escorted to the safety of the pier in Union Hall.

Following the call out, John Kelleher, Union Hall RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager said: ‘With the unprecedented fine weather we are experiencing currently, remember the following; wear a life jacket and carry a means of communication.

Union Hall RNLI also welcomed new volunteer Niamh Collins on her first call out as shore crew.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

A new inshore Atlantic 85 class lifeboat has officially gone on service at Union Hall RNLI in in West Cork.

The lifeboat, which arrived at the lifeboat station last week, replaces the last Atlantic 75 in Ireland, Margaret Bench of Solihull, which has been used to save lives at sea in West Cork since 2017. Previous to this, Maritime Nation was in service from 2014. Both of these lifeboats came from the RNLI’s relief fleet.

The volunteer lifeboat crew began familiarisation training on the new lifeboat this past Monday and it was officially declared a search and rescue asset by the Irish Coast Guard last night, Thursday 24 June.

It has been funded through a legacy from the late Raymond Fielding. Raymond and his wife Christine were keen sailors and sailed into Glandore Harbour many times over the years.

Due to his many fond memories of West Cork, Raymond wanted his legacy to fund an Atlantic 85 class lifeboat and he requested that it came to Union Hall.

The Christine and Raymond Fielding will be officially named at a special ceremony and service of dedication at Union Hall lifeboat station at a later date.

The new lifeboat has been funded through a legacy from the late Raymond Fielding | Credit: RNLI/Union HallThe new lifeboat has been funded through a legacy from the late Raymond Fielding | Credit: RNLI/Union Hall

Union Hall’s new lifeboat has some advancements on its predecessor. The Atlantic 85 design allows room for four crew members and more kit than the Atlantic 75, which only had room for three people.

The lifeboat is powered by two 115HP engines and has a stronger hull and greater top speed of 35 knots. The added radar allows the crew to operate more effectively in poor visibility and there is also VHF direction-finding equipment.

Another feature is the manually operated self-righting mechanism which, combined with inversion-proofed engines, keeps the lifeboat operational even after capsize. The lifeboat can also be beached in an emergency without causing damage to its engines or steering gear.

The Atlantic 85, which was introduced to the RNLI fleet in 2005, also carries a full suite of communication and electronic navigation aids, as well as a searchlight, night-vision equipment and flares for night-time operations.

Speaking following the lifeboat officially going on service, Union Hall RNLI lifeboat operations manager John Kelleher said: “We are extremely grateful to Raymond Fielding for his generous legacy donation which has funded our permanent lifeboat here at Union Hall.

“As we welcome a new lifeboat, there is also a sense of nostalgia as we are the last lifeboat station in Ireland to use an Atlantic 75 lifeboat.

“We are looking forward to being the custodians of this new lifeboat which will allow our volunteers to go on to rescue and save many more lives in the years to come.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

Union Hall RNLI’s latest volunteer got more than he expected last night (Tuesday 22 June) after the lifeboat crew were called to assist two people on a yacht with mechanical difficulties off Toe Head in West Cork.

The lifeboat, helmed by Michael Limrick with Liam Limrick and new recruit Craig Jennings onboard, were on a training exercise at the time and launched back out to sea at 9pm.

One at Toe Head the crew observed that the 34ft yacht was making progress but was slow due to mechanical issues. Sea conditions were good at the time with a moderate northerly breeze, so the volunteer crew stayed alongside the yacht and escorted it back to the pier at Union Hall.

Speaking following the callout, Peter Deasy, Union Hall RNLI’s deputy launching authority, said: “Our volunteer crew were just returning from an exercise and a busy day of training so I asked the crew if they would like an alternative crew but they were very willing to interrupt their training and proceed to assist the casualties.

“We congratulate Craig Jennings on what started as a three-hour training exercise for him but turned into nearly five hours at sea and included his first callout with Union Hall RNLI.

“We would remind everyone for the season ahead to always carry a means of communication and wear a lifejacket.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

Union Hall RNLI launched this afternoon (Friday 14 May) to assist an angling vessel with seven people on board that was experiencing mechanical difficulty.

The volunteer lifeboat crew were requested to launch their inshore lifeboat Margaret Bench of Solihull at 3.40pm to the chartered angling vessel one mile south of Adam Island, just outside Glandore Harbour in West Cork.

With Tim Forde at the helm accompanied by crew Paddy Moloney and Cathal Deasy, the lifeboat launched at 3.51pm and made its way to the reported location.

Once on scene, a lifeboat crew member established a towline and the lifeboat towed the stricken angling vessel back to the pier at Union Hall.

Speaking following the callout, Union Hall RNLI deputy launching authority Jim Moloney said: “This was the second lifeboat launch request for Union Hall within 24 hours, and with a busy season ahead we would remind everyone going to sea to always carry a means of communication, wear a lifejacket and respect the water.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

Union Hall RNLI volunteer Brian Crowley has received an Excellence in Volunteering Award from the RNLI for his hard work, dedication to and promotion of the charity that saves lives at sea.

Unfortunately due to pandemic restrictions, the lifeboat station could not present him with his award in person but hopes to mark this achievement next year.

“This is such an achievement as Brian is volunteering with the RNLI for ‘only’ 66 years so far,” said Pamela Deasey, Union Hall RNLI’s press officer.

“He was asked then to join by Mrs Bridges in Glandore, and he said ‘Yes’ straight away. As a young man growing up in Union Hall, he was aware of the dangers of the sea, and he wanted to raise awareness and help raise vital funds for the service.”

Brian was well-known throughout West Cork at the time as he used to co-own the ever popular Crowley’s Hall in Union Hall, where many a West Cork couple met — his first undertaking as fundraiser was a dance which was a tremendous success.

He became secretary of Leap, Glandore and Union Hall branch in 1976 as well as filling in a lot of other roles, until the current branch set up in 1997.

“Words like dependable, trustworthy, selfless and courageous are the ethos of the RNLI and Brian has proved to be a great ambassador having these qualities in abundance,” Pamela added.

“This is not Brian’s first award, as he also received his silver badge for fundraising in 1985 and a gold badge in 2003. He has many a story to tell about all his years service and all the tremendous characters he has met along his way.”

Speaking following news of the award, Mick McKenna, chair of fundraising at Union Hall RNLI, said: “Everyone at Union Hall RNLI would like to firstly congratulate Brian for this much deserved award, and secondly thank him for all his time, efforts and dedication throughout all these years, in helping to raise vital funds for the RNLI. We are all extremely proud of his achievements.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under
Page 2 of 5

Royal National Lifeboat Institute (RNLI) in Ireland Information

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is a charity to save lives at sea in the waters of UK and Ireland. Funded principally by legacies and donations, the RNLI operates a fleet of lifeboats, crewed by volunteers, based at a range of coastal and inland waters stations. Working closely with UK and Ireland Coastguards, RNLI crews are available to launch at short notice to assist people and vessels in difficulties.

RNLI was founded in 1824 and is based in Poole, Dorset. The organisation raised €210m in funds in 2019, spending €200m on lifesaving activities and water safety education. RNLI also provides a beach lifeguard service in the UK and has recently developed an International drowning prevention strategy, partnering with other organisations and governments to make drowning prevention a global priority.

Irish Lifeboat Stations

There are 46 lifeboat stations on the island of Ireland, with an operational base in Swords, Co Dublin. Irish RNLI crews are tasked through a paging system instigated by the Irish Coast Guard which can task a range of rescue resources depending on the nature of the emergency.

Famous Irish Lifeboat Rescues

Irish Lifeboats have participated in many rescues, perhaps the most famous of which was the rescue of the crew of the Daunt Rock lightship off Cork Harbour by the Ballycotton lifeboat in 1936. Spending almost 50 hours at sea, the lifeboat stood by the drifting lightship until the proximity to the Daunt Rock forced the coxswain to get alongside and successfully rescue the lightship's crew.

32 Irish lifeboat crew have been lost in rescue missions, including the 15 crew of the Kingstown (now Dun Laoghaire) lifeboat which capsized while attempting to rescue the crew of the SS Palme on Christmas Eve 1895.


While the number of callouts to lifeboat stations varies from year to year, Howth Lifeboat station has aggregated more 'shouts' in recent years than other stations, averaging just over 60 a year.

Stations with an offshore lifeboat have a full-time mechanic, while some have a full-time coxswain. However, most lifeboat crews are volunteers.

There are 46 lifeboat stations on the island of Ireland

32 Irish lifeboat crew have been lost in rescue missions, including the 15 crew of the Kingstown (now Dun Laoghaire) lifeboat which capsized while attempting to rescue the crew of the SS Palme on Christmas Eve 1895

In 2019, 8,941 lifeboat launches saved 342 lives across the RNLI fleet.

The Irish fleet is a mixture of inshore and all-weather (offshore) craft. The offshore lifeboats, which range from 17m to 12m in length are either moored afloat, launched down a slipway or are towed into the sea on a trailer and launched. The inshore boats are either rigid or non-rigid inflatables.

The Irish Coast Guard in the Republic of Ireland or the UK Coastguard in Northern Ireland task lifeboats when an emergency call is received, through any of the recognised systems. These include 999/112 phone calls, Mayday/PanPan calls on VHF, a signal from an emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) or distress signals.

The Irish Coast Guard is the government agency responsible for the response to, and co-ordination of, maritime accidents which require search and rescue operations. To carry out their task the Coast Guard calls on their own resources – Coast Guard units manned by volunteers and contracted helicopters, as well as "declared resources" - RNLI lifeboats and crews. While lifeboats conduct the operation, the coordination is provided by the Coast Guard.

A lifeboat coxswain (pronounced cox'n) is the skipper or master of the lifeboat.

RNLI Lifeboat crews are required to follow a particular development plan that covers a pre-agreed range of skills necessary to complete particular tasks. These skills and tasks form part of the competence-based training that is delivered both locally and at the RNLI's Lifeboat College in Poole, Dorset


While the RNLI is dependent on donations and legacies for funding, they also need volunteer crew and fund-raisers.

© Afloat 2020