RNLI cuts last ties with Birnbeck
PUBLISHED: 12:00 29 January 2015
LIFEBOATS have been housed on Birnbeck Pier for 132 years - but Weston RNLI has now cut the last of its historic ties with the dilapidated structure.
The RNLI has removed its Atlantic 75 lifeboat from Birnbeck and placed it beside its temporary lifeboat station near Marine Lake.
The life-saving charity departed Birnbeck in November 2013 after its boardwalk was judged too dangerous to use. It kept the lifeboat on the pier for training and emergencies, but now can no longer use the pier at all.
Last week, it announced plans to apply for planning permission to build a new permanent base at Madeira Cove in Birnbeck Road.
Lifeboat operations manager Charlie Conroy said: “It is great that we now have both our lifeboats back with us.
“The morale of the crew has gone up significantly.
“Having our largest lifeboat on the island, with all the difficulties accessing it, has been depressing.
“Now we can get on with our training on both lifeboats in all weathers and continuing to provide a round-the-clock life-saving service.”
The RNLI was given permission by North Somerset Council to move the lifeboat next to its Marine Lake base last year.
It has permission to keep its temporary station there for up to three years. Campaigners are now aiming to buy and restore Birnbeck Pier to reopen it to the public.