2011 is Selsey RNLI Lifeboat Station’s 150th anniversary. This very special occasion has been acknowledged by the Trustee’s of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution with the award of a Vellum in recognition of the completion of 150 years service made by the Station and its volunteers to the cause of saving lives at sea.
Branch Chairman John Light commented: "Three boathouses; eleven new all weather lifeboats; many inshore lifeboats; not to mention the many Selsey men and women who have been involved as lifeboat crew and shore crew responsible for launch and recovery. In addition there are the management and operations groups; fundraising teams; Flag Day sellers; lifeboat souvenir sales staff; boathouse and museum attendants who show visitors around the lifeboat station and museum. All have contributed over the last 150 years to provide a voluntary service to be proud of in support of Selsey lifeboats saving lives at sea. None of this would have been possible without the generous support of the people of Selsey, the holidaymakers and visitors to the Town, who are always ready to put money in our buckets when visiting the boathouse or supporting the various events. A big thank you to everyone."
Significant developments have occurred over the 150 years of the lifeboat station's existence both in terms of boat design, equipment and technology and these are best exemplified by comparing photographs of Selsey's first pulling lifeboat 'The Friend' with its current Tyne Class all weather lifeboat 'Voluntary Worker'. Since 1861 there have been 1,871 launches credited with saving 584 lives and recovering numerous broken down vessels!
Clive Cockayne the Lifeboat Operations Manager added: "The 150th Anniversary of Selsey Lifeboat Station in 2011 marks a significant milestone in the station's history. The strategic location of the Lifeboat Station, covering an area of inhospitable shoal ground and recognized so long ago by the RNLI when establishing the first lifeboat here in 1861, continues to provide essential cover to all seafarers alike."