New £2.2m lifeboat cheered into port

Picture by Julian Brown 26/06/16



The new RNLI Shannon class lifeboat, the Kenneth James Pierpoint, arrives at its new home with Fleetwood RNLI watched by a massive crowd
Picture by Julian Brown 26/06/16 The new RNLI Shannon class lifeboat, the Kenneth James Pierpoint, arrives at its new home with Fleetwood RNLI watched by a massive crowd
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A huge 1,000-strong crowd gathered and a band played as Fleetwood welcomed the town’s new £2.2m state-of the-art lifeboat on Sunday.

The gleaming new Shannon class vessel, the Kenneth James Pierpoint, arrived at around 1.45pm after making a five-day journey from RNLI HQ in Poole, Dorset.

The Band and Drum Corps of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers (Lancashire) were on hand to salute the boat as she came into the RNLI boat pen, after being escorted into Fleetwood by the Blackpool, Lytham, Morecambe and Barrow lifeboats.

At the helm of the new boat was proud Fleetwood Lifeboat coxswain, Gary Randles.

Capable of speeds of 25 knots, the Kenneth James Pierpoint is almost 50 per cent faster than predecessor, William Street, and is more manoeuvrable - increasing the chances of saving their lives.

Dave Eccles, Fleetwood RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager, said: “It was a very emotional occasion and it’s fantastic for Fleetwood to have a lifeboat like this. The icing on the cake was the escort from the other lifeboat vessels.”