Cowes Inshore Lifeboat

Future Plans

Photograph courtesy Patrick Eden

The signing of the contract for the new Cowes Inshore Lifeboat

Seated, left to right

Kevin Hughes, General Manager Island Plastics International (Marine Division) and Chris Greenham, Chairman, Cowes Inshore Lifeboat

overlooked by

Maurice Balfe, Company Secretary, Island Plastics and Hugh Robotham, Vice-chairman and Training Officer, Cowes Inshore Lifeboat


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With the coming sailing season that will prove to be the busiest that Cowes will experience this century - let alone the last one - Island Plastics International ( Marine Division ) of Cowes has been awarded the contract for building the new inshore lifeboat.

The craft will be completed in time for a dedication ceremony during the America's Cup 150th Jubilee week of the 18th - 25th August. Larger than its predecessor the boat is the third generation to go into service giving greater seagoing capabilities and equipped with state of the art navigational aids.

The replacement could not have been made possible without financial assistance from The Peter Harrison Foundation, a grant making Charitable Trust launched in October 2000. More funding is needed to complete the purchase but there is sufficient confidence that this will be forthcoming if other sponsors can be persuaded to support this worthwhile and essential emergency service. Mr Chris Greenham, Chairman and an original crewmember of the Unit said he was extremely grateful to The Peter Harrison Foundation for their very generous contribution. He added that the people of Cowes are justly proud of their own independent Lifeboat and this new boat will serve the Unit for many years to come.

The contract is reassuring for both Cowes Inshore Lifeboat Committee and Island Plastics, as not only is the quality of construction guaranteed, but the order helps the local economy.

The new boat, an 8.5 metre Barbarian Class rigid inflatable was designed by the late George Marvin, C. Eng, MRINA, an acknowledged expert in the design of this type of vessel and a great supporter of Cowes Inshore Lifeboat. It will be powered by twin 225 h.p., 4-stroke Yamaha outboard motors giving speeds in excess of 30 knots. Crew consists of a Cox'n. and 2 or 3 crewmembers all trained to a very high standard to respond to emergencies under the direct control of H.M. Coastguard at Lee-On-Solent. On completion of sea trials the new boat will replace the existing 7.4 metre Tornado semi-rigid craft which has been in service for 6 years and is currently offered for sale complete with road trailer.

Cowes Inshore Lifeboat, which is not supported by any national organisation is currently seeking sponsorship or other financial assistance as the gratefully received donations from local individuals and organisations are insufficient to cover the running costs. Any enquiries about this or the new boat should be addressed to Chris Greenham, Chairman at the Units registered address, 38 Baring Road, Cowes, Isle of Wight, PO31 8DE

If you would like to assist in the purchase of our new boat please contact our Corporate Fund Raiser.

Existing Boat Sold
As a result of these plans, our existing 7.4 metre Tornado boat has been sold. The new owners will be the K.N.R.M of The Netherlands and it will be handed over to them to use as a reserve lifeboat within their fleet no later than 30th November 2001. Chris Greenham, Chairman C.I.L.B said he was extremely pleased the boat would continue in service with such a professional Organisation.