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Margate Lifeboat Station

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Margate has celebrated nearly 150 years as a lifeboat station and over 10 awards for gallantry have been presented to the crew. The station has also seen tragedy with ten crew losing their lives saving others at sea.

This station is classed as a Discover station. ​Our crews from Discover stations are equally welcoming to visitors but many of these stations were built before visitors were considered. These stations normally open their boathouse doors during the summer months. 

 

Recent launches from this station

Date Time
25/03/2014 00:38
21/03/2014 18:17
20/03/2014 12:00
07/01/2014 09:44
22/11/2013 22:51
05/09/2013 16:54
01/09/2013 04:16
28/08/2013 18:35
22/08/2013 11:22
14/08/2013 16:30

Latest news from this station

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Station address:

Margate Lifeboat Station
The Rendezvous
Margate
Kent
CT9 1HG

Station telephone:

01843 221613

Station opening times:

By appointment only

Visitor contact:

Paul Hodson

Visitor contact telephone:

01843 221613

 

Shop telephone:

01843 232978

Shop opening times:

April–October
Monday–Sunday
11am–4pm

Appledore ILB crew members. Left to right, Martin Davis, Gary Stanbury and Andrew HalletSpecific crew member details for this lifeboat station are not available here at the moment.

More than 4,800 lifeboat crew members around the UK and RoI drop everything when their pagers go off, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Only 1 in 10 crew members has a professional maritime occupation. Men and women of all ages and all walks of life crew the RNLI lifeboats around our coasts and waterways.

 

  • Margate RNLI all-weather lifeboat 'Leonard Kent' oustide the lifeboat station

    Margate RNLI all-weather lifeboat 'Leonard Kent' oustide the lifeboat station

  • Margate RNLI inshore lifeboat 'Tigger Three' (RNLI Margate)

    Margate RNLI inshore lifeboat 'Tigger Three' (RNLI Margate)

  • .

    2013 stats inforgraphic

  • Margate RNLI all-weather lifeboat 'Leonard Kent' oustide the lifeboat station (RNLI Margate)

    Margate RNLI all-weather lifeboat 'Leonard Kent' oustide the lifeboat station

  • Margate RNLI all-weather lifeboat 'Leonard Kent' at sea (RNLI Margate)

    Margate RNLI all-weather lifeboat 'Leonard Kent' at sea (RNLI Margate)

  • Margate's RNLI inshore lifeboat at sea on a training exercise

    Margate RNLI Inshore lifeboat 'Tigger Three'

  • Margate lifeboat tows disabled yacht to safety

    Margate lifeboat tows disabled yacht to safety

  • Picture shows 16 year old Peter in the middle

    Survivors of Matra

  • Sick Russian seaman landed from Russian cargo ship by Margate lifeboat

    Sick Russian seaman landed from Russian cargo ship by Margate lifeboat

  • Man, a cat and three more men in a boat rescued by Margate RNLI lifeboat

    Man, a cat and three more men in a boat rescued by Margate RNLI lifeboat

  • Naming ceremony held for Margate's new inshore lifeboat

    Naming ceremony held for Margate's new inshore lifeboat

  • Whitstable and Margate Lifeboats assist Broken Down Motor Cruiser

    Whitstable and Margate Lifeboats assist Broken Down Motor Cruiser

  • TEST: Dover lifeboat rescues balloon

    TEST: Dover lifeboat rescues balloon

  • RNLI Chairman visits south east lifeboat stations

    RNLI Chairman visits south east lifeboat stations

  • RNLI Chairman visits south east lifeboat stations

    RNLI Chairman visits south east lifeboat stations-1

  • Business as usual for Margate lifeboat during turner contemporary building work

    Business as usual for Margate lifeboat during turner contemporary building work

  • .

    Margate assist dismasted yacht 3

  • .

    Margate assist dismasted yacht 2

  • .

    Margate assist dismasted yacht 1

  • Margate's RNLI all-weather lifeboat tows a yacht to Ramsgate after taking in water and making a Mayday distress call eleven miles off Margate

    Under tow for Ramsgate harbour

  • RNLI Kent volunteers put others first at Christmas

    RNLI Kent volunteers put others first at Christmas

  • The proceeds of crime used to fuel Margate lifeboat

    The proceeds of crime used to fuel Margate lifeboat

  • Artwork ‘Emin’ates from Margate Harbour Arm gallery in aid of RNLI

    Artwork ‘Emin’ates from Margate Harbour Arm gallery in aid of RNLI-3

  • Artwork ‘Emin’ates from Margate Harbour Arm gallery in aid of RNLI

    Artwork ‘Emin’ates from Margate Harbour Arm gallery in aid of RNLI

  • Artwork ‘Emin’ates from Margate Harbour Arm gallery in aid of RNLI

    Artwork ‘Emin’ates from Margate Harbour Arm gallery in aid of RNLI-2

  • Artwork ‘Emin’ates from Margate Harbour Arm gallery in aid of RNLI

    Artwork ‘Emin’ates from Margate Harbour Arm gallery in aid of RNLI-1

  • Kent’s new lifeguards help 664 whilst lifeboats launch 34 times in 2012

    RNLI lifeguards, supervisors and manager at Broadstairs in September 2012

  • Walmer RNLI Inshore Lifeboat involved in three rescues on one launch

    A grateful windsurfer, one of 3 rescues in 1 launch by Walmer, August 2012

  • Small craft owners urged to check their charts are updated after cruiser runs aground off Margate

    A cruiser is towed by Margate RNLI after running aground, May 2012

  • Dover RNLI carrying Olympic torch

    Torch_TimAsh

  • Kent’s new lifeguards help 664 whilst lifeboats launch 34 times in 2012

    The stricken yacht Liquid Vortex in January 2012

  • Kent’s new lifeguards help 664 whilst lifeboats launch 34 times in 2012

    RNLI lifeguards, supervisors and manager at Broadstairs in September 2012

  • Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday

    Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday-4

  • Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday

    Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday-5

  • Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday

    Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday-2

  • Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday

    Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday-3

  • Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday

    Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday-1

  • Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday

    Margate lifeboat station prepares to celebrate its 150th birthday

  • Margate lifeboat assists motor cruiser following engine room fire

    Margate lifeboat assists motor cruiser following engine room fire-1

  • Margate lifeboat assists motor cruiser following engine room fire

    Margate lifeboat assists motor cruiser following engine room fire

  • Disabled yacht towed to safety by Margate RNLI lifeboat

    Disabled yacht towed to safety by Margate RNLI lifeboat

  • Dunkirk 'Little Ships' 70th Anniversary

    Dunkirk 'Little Ships' 70th Anniversary

  • Poole remembers the Dunkirk Spirit

    Poole remembers the Dunkirk Spirit

  • RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant

    RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant-5

  • RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant

    RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant-4

  • RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant

    RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant-3

  • RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant

    RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant-2

  • RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant

    RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant-1

  • RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant

    RNLI crew members assisting with safety at Diamond Jubilee Thames Pageant

  • Disabled RIB towed to safety by Margate RNLI lifeboat

    Disabled RIB towed to safety by Margate RNLI lifeboat

  • RNLI lifeguards on Thanet beaches for first time

    RNLI lifeguards on Thanet beaches for first time

  • Small craft owners urged to check their charts are updated after cruiser runs aground off Margate

    Small craft owners urged to check their charts are updated after cruiser runs aground off Margate

  • Lifeboats charity gives thanks to Maidstone Reindeer Runners

    Lifeboats charity gives thanks to Maidstone Reindeer Runners-2

  • Lifeboats charity gives thanks to Maidstone Reindeer Runners

    Lifeboats charity gives thanks to Maidstone Reindeer Runners-1

  • Lifeboats charity gives thanks to Maidstone Reindeer Runners

    Lifeboats charity gives thanks to Maidstone Reindeer Runners

  • Lifeboat charity calls on Maidstone people to sign up for RNLI Reindeer Run

    Lifeboat charity calls on Maidstone people to sign up for RNLI Reindeer Run

  • Her Majesty The Queen to visit Margate RNLI

    Her Majesty The Queen to visit Margate RNLI

  • Her Majesty The Queen at Margate RNLI

    Her Majesty The Queen at Margate RNLI-4

  • Her Majesty The Queen at Margate RNLI

    Her Majesty The Queen at Margate RNLI-3

  • Her Majesty The Queen at Margate RNLI

    Her Majesty The Queen at Margate RNLI-1

  • Her Majesty The Queen at Margate RNLI

    Her Majesty The Queen at Margate RNLI-2

  • Her Majesty The Queen at Margate RNLI

    Her Majesty The Queen at Margate RNLI

  • Motor cruiser towed to safety by Margate RNLI lifeboat

    Motor cruiser towed to safety by Margate RNLI lifeboat

  • Will you take to the Sea to Support the RNLI?

    Will you take to the Sea to Support the RNLI?

  • Support from on high for Margate’s RNLI lifeboat crew

    Reverend Brian Sharp receives his badge from Admiral the Lord Boyce RNLI Chairman

  • Support from on high for Margate’s RNLI lifeboat crew

    Margate RNLI honorary chaplain Reverend Brian Sharp

  • Support from on high for Margate’s RNLI lifeboat crew

    Margate RNLI honorary chaplain Reverend Brian Sharp joins the lifeboat crew for an exercise launch

  • Ramsgate RNLI lifeboat volunteers’ plea: “new crew – it could be you”

    Ramsgate's inshore lifeboat 'Bob Turnbull'

  • Margate RNLI benefits from regular local quiz nights

    Quizmaster Johnny Andrews (right) hands over the Scalextric auction prize to the lucky winner

  • Margate Shop

    Margate Shop

  • Broadstairs Shop

    Broadstairs Shop

  • Image of Margate’s Mersey class lifeboat working near a wind farm. Photo: RNLI/Nigel Millard

    Margate’s Mersey class lifeboat working near a wind farm. Photo: RNLI/Nigel Millard

  • Image of recovery of Margate’s Mersey class lifeboat. Photo: RNLI/Nigel Millard

    Recovery of Margate’s Mersey class lifeboat. Photo: RNLI/Nigel Millard

  • Image of washing Mersey class lifeboat on return from a call out. Photo: RNLI/Nigel Millard

    Washing Mersey class lifeboat on return from a call out. Photo: RNLI/Nigel Millard

 

Image of lifeboat
 

Lifeboat name: Leonard Kent

Lifeboat class: Mersey class

Funded by: Bequest of Leonard Francis Kent and the Margate Branch appeal together with other gifts and legacies

Read more about the Mersey


Image of lifeboat



Lifeboat name:
Tigger Three

Lifeboat class: D class

Funded by: Mr and Mrs Davenport

Read more about the D class

A lifeboat Hannah and Angela was given to the town in 1857 by Miss Burdett Coutts.  The responsibility for the lifeboat was transferred to the RNLI in 1860.  A second station was opened in 1898.  The No 1 station was closed in 1927.  At one time there was a private lifeboat called Friend To All Nations as well as the Institutions lifeboat at Margate.

1857
On 5 January the lugger Victory put off to help the American ship Northern Belle but capsized with the loss of nine men John Smith, William Emptage, Isaac Solly, Abraham Busbridge, Charles Fuller, John Emptage, George Smith, Henry Paramore, and Fredrick Bath.

1871
Silver Medal awarded to Coxswain William Grant in acknowledgement of his gallant services and particularly for his highly meritorious conduct when saving the crew of six from the Brig Sarah that became a total wreck on the Margate Sands in heavy seas and a strong easterly wind on 26 January 1871.

1877
Silver Second-Service clasp awarded to Coxswain William Grant for the rescue of 15 people from the Barque Hero and seven people from the Brig Louisa on 24 November 1877 during a strong gale increasing to a hurricane with heavy squalls of rain and sleet and high seas.  The crew of the lifeboat suffered severely from exposure in rendering these services.

1893
Silver Medal to William Crawford, Honorary Secretary, in acknowledgement of his gallant services at Margate and assisting to save life from shipwreck.

1896
Launching poles supplied.

A grant of £150 was made to T J Emptage who had sustained an injury while engaged in painting the lifeboat house.

1897
On 2 December the sailing ship Persian Empire of West Hartlepool came into collision with a steamer off the north east part of Margate Sands, while bound from London to Table Bay with a general cargo.  A strong north east gale was blowing with a heavy sea and thick snow and hail, when soon after five o’clock in the morning, the Institutions lifeboat Quiver and the town lifeboat Friend To All Nations put out.  The Quiver succeeded in reaching the casualty and in rendering valuable assistance; she returned to her station after being on service for over 31 hours.  The Friend To All Nations, while crossing the spit of the Mayland Rock, was struck by a heavy sea and capsized.  Of her crew of 13 brave men only four were saved.  The people who lost their lives were William Phillpot Cook senior, Coxswain Henry Richard Brockman, Robert Ernest Cook, William Phillpot Cook junior, Edward Robert Crunden, John Benjamin Dyke, William Richard Gill, and George William Ladd. Also, Superintendent Margate Ambulance Corps Charles E Troughton, lost his life.  The Institution made a donation of £1,000 to the fund that was opened for the benefit of the widows and children.

1898
Two slipways constructed at a cost of £3,431.

On 24 February during a gale, the lifeboat was drawn by eight horses to the sands east of the stone pier, the usual place for a low water launch, when turning the carriage, a heavy sea struck the horses washing the riders off and throwing the horses in a heap.  Another attempt was made but another very heavy sea took the horses off their feet and then threw them against the carriage and some of them under it.  The Honorary Secretary and others rushed to the rescue of the men and horses.  Fortunately none of them were lost but four horses were drowned.  £150 was paid as compensation to the owners of the horses.

District Inspector reported that a lifeboat brigade of 50 men had been enrolled.

1904
Committee of Management granted £10 to widow of Coastguard T Ashley who had a fit and died while putting the gear etc in order after the lifeboat had launched on service on 4 March.  When the No 2 lifeboat was about to be launched for service on 7 November, the rope parted and she took charge down the slipway.  The wire winch rope held and the boat was hauled back to the foot of the slipway.  After investigation the local committee were satisfied that the rope had been maliciously nearly cut through and £5 reward was offered for the discovery of the miscreant.

1905
Silver Medal awarded to Second Coxswain Steven Clayson, of the No 1 lifeboat for the rescue of four people from the Ketch Malvoisin of London that was stranded 23 miles away on the Kentish Knock sands on 15 January 1905 in a whole south-easterly gale, very heavy seas and bitter cold.  The lifeboat launched at 0315 and arrived on scene at 0800 to find the casualty with her rudder and sails gone her bulwarks smashed and the sea breaking over her.  The lifeboat went alongside and took off the exhausted crew then battled back to Margate arriving at 1330.

1906
Mr J J Jones, a member of the Margate crew, died as a result of exposure whilst out on service in the private lifeboat Friend To All Nations.  He had been out on service in the Institutions lifeboat 55 times.

Committee of Management voted £200 to local fund.

1911
Gas lamps provided for each slipway.

1925
The stations first motor lifeboat sent.

1929
On 29 December the lifeboat rendered assistance to the motor ship Hermine of Wilhelmshaven.  The German Government awarded a certificate to each member of the crew.

1940
The lifeboat The Lord Southborough was one of the 19 lifeboats that went to Dunkirk on 30 May to help in the evacuation of the British Expeditionary Force under the command of Coxswain Edward Drake Parker and brought off some 600 men.  Coxswain Parker was one of the two lifeboat coxswains who, for their services at Dunkirk, were awarded the Distinguished Service Medal. 

The pilot of a British Aircraft who was rescued on 3 September was Pilot Officer R H Hillary, a descendant of Sir W Hillary, Founder of the Institution.

1949
Benjamin Frost, a member of the crew, was cycling down to the lifeboat house at the end of the pier for a service call on 6 November.  As soon as he got into the lifeboat he had a heart attack and died.  His mother was granted an allowance by the Institution.

1951
Bronze Medal awarded to crew member Alfred Wilson for his great skill and bravery during a service on 2 September 1951 to the yacht Girland that was found shortly after midnight anchored 100 yards off Margate Harbour wall with seas rebounding over her.  The lifeboat was brought alongside and Mr Wilson managed to board the casualty, laid on the deck with the sea washing over him, held onto the mast with one hand and used the other to secure a line.  After he had released the yacht’s two anchors she was towed to the safety of the harbour.  He was also voted the Maud Smith Award for the bravest act of life-saving by a member of a lifeboat crew.

1952
Silver Medal awarded to Coxswain Dennis R Price for an outstanding service on 7 November 1952 when two men were rescued from the barque Vera that went aground on the north side of the Thames Estuary.  All three Essex lifeboats were out on service so the lifeboat launched at 0310 and covered the 20 miles in sleet squalls with a gale against her, and reached the wreck at 0600 to find two men clinging to the mast rigging which was visible above the water.  Coxswain Price took the lifeboat over the barques deck and the survivors slid down the rigging to safety.  They had been for almost five hours, and was landed at Brightlingsea at 0945.

1953
In the abnormal high tides of January the lifeboat house was severely damaged and a complete new floor had to be fitted.

The Thanks of the Institution inscribed on Vellum accorded to Coxswain Dennis H Price for the initiative and skill he displayed in saving the French trawler Notre Dame de la Mer and her crew of seven from being overwhelmed by the heavy seas which were pounding the vessel on to rocks at Foreness Point on 19 December.

1960
Centenary Vellum presented to station.

1966
D class lifeboat sent to station in May.

1969
The Thanks of the Institution inscribed on Vellum accorded to Helmsman David E G Lacey and crew member Christopher Weatherly Brown for the courage and determination displayed by them when the D class inflatable lifeboat assisted to save the crew of four of the converted fishing boat Jaroma which had run aground on rocks on 24 August.

1971
The Thanks of the Institution inscribed on Vellum to Helmsman Albert Joseph Scott for the leadership and seamanship he displayed when the D Class inflatable rescued the crew of three of the motor launch Pisces which had run aground on rocks on 19 July.

1992
At a special ceremony held on 21 May at Margates lifeboat station, Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra named the Mersey class lifeboat Leonard Kent.

1998
Proposals for improved crew facilities were drawn up and approved.  The work was completed in September.

1999
The new D class lifeboat, D545 Tigger Too, was placed on service on Sunday 30 May.  Lifeboat D400, Tigger, has been withdrawn to Poole Depot as a relief lifeboat.

2008
The new station D class lifeboat D-706 Tigger Three was placed on service on 17 December.  Lifeboat D-545 has been withdrawn. This lifeboat was funded by a generous donation from Mr and Mrs Davenport.

2009
The Trustees voted the award of a 150th year Vellum to the station in 2010.

MEDAL RECORD
Six medals have been awarded, five Silver and one Bronze, the last being voted in 1952.

FOREIGN AWARDS
On 19 December 1929 the lifeboat rendered assistance to the motor ship Hermine of Wilhelmshaven.  The German Government awarded a Certificate to each member of the crew.