Archives for News (103)

RNLI takes part in Easter 1916 centenary commemoration

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Published on: March 27, 2016

Charity’s role in maritime life-saving work recognised

 RNLI volunteer lifeboat crew from across Ireland took part in today’s (Sunday 27 March 2016) Easter 1916 centenary commemoration which saw over seven hundred members of the Irish emergency services taking part in the biggest parade in the history of the state. The fifty RNLI volunteers came from twenty-nine lifeboat stations around the Irish coast and inland to parade through Dublin City Centre to mark the centenary of the Easter Rising in 1916.  The RNLI formed part of the emergency services section of the parade which recognised the ‘blue-light’ agencies serving the Irish state since its foundation. 

The RNLI contingent was accompanied by a new Atlantic 85 lifeboat, which following its debut in the parade, will be transported to Youghal in Cork to go on operational service, and two RNLI landrovers used in the launching of inshore lifeboats.  

 The parade was preceded by a short ceremony which included a reading of the 1916 Proclamation and the President of Ireland Michael D Higgins laying a wreath on behalf of the people of Ireland, followed by a minute’s silence observed for all those who died during the Rising. 

The parade involved over 3,000 participants, largely from the Irish Defence Forces with 793 people from the emergency services.  Represented along with the RNLI were An Garda Siochána, Dublin Fire Brigade, the National Ambulance Service, St John Ambulance, Irish Coast Guard and the Civil Defence.

Commenting on the commemoration RNLI Operations Manager Owen Medland said, ‘It is a huge honour for the RNLI to take part in this historic event. It is an acknowledgement of the role our volunteers have played in saving lives at sea and on inland waters in Ireland since the RNLI was established in Ireland in 1826. The lifeboat service has been given without any interruption historically and has always put the needs of those in danger on the water above all.

Our volunteers come from all communities and backgrounds and the RNLI is proud of the role Irish volunteers have played in saving countless lives and continue to play today and into the future.’

Many of the volunteers taking part had relatives who were involved in the events of 1916 and the following years. Clifden RNLI volunteer lifeboat Coxswain Alan Pryce is the grand-nephew of Thomas Whelan of Clifden Co. Galway, one of the ‘Forgotten Ten’, who was executed in Mountjoy Prison during the War of Independence in 1921.

Clogherhead RNLI Volunteer Shore Crew member Carolyn Stanley is the grand-niece of Joe Stanley who was Pádraig Pearse’s press agent and printer.  During the Easter Rising Pádraig Pearse relied on his young press agent, Joe Stanley, to convert his hand written communiques into printed documents for onward circulation throughout the city.  It was Joe Stanley who published the First Documents of the newly proclaimed republic.

Fethard on Sea RNLI volunteer Deputy Launching Authority and former lifeboat helm Hugh Burke is the nephew of John Fenlon. Following the 1916 rising in Enniscorty John was arrested and locked up in Wexford jail from where he escaped and remained on the run for seven years.

Lifeboat stations represented at the Easter 1916 parade were Achill, Wexford, Arklow, Lough Ree, Howth, Baltimore, Donaghadee, Dun Laoghaire, Dun Laoghaire, Kilmore Quay, Wicklow, Ballyglass, Clifden, Courtmacsherry, Clogherhead, Dunmore East, Bundoran, Helvick Head, Kinsale, Crosshaven, Portaferry, Youghal, Lough Swilly, Kilrush, Fethard, Red Bay, Union Hall, Skerries and Sligo.

O’Keeffe Sisters Run Dublin Marathon for Baltimore RNLI

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Published on: October 6, 2015

 

Sisters Yvonne O’Keeffe & Gillian O’Sullivan are running in the Dublin Marathon on 26th October and have set up a charity page to hopefully make a few bob for the RNLI Baltimore Lifeboat Station – a cause very close to their hearts. Any donations small or large would be greatly appreciated so just click on the link if you would like to support.

 

Community News Summer 2015 – Historic Medal comes home to Baltimore

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Published on: June 29, 2015

 A rare opportunity to secure a piece of Baltimore Lifeboat history came to light earlier last month. An extremely scarce and very fine Royal National Lifeboat Institution Silver Gallantry Medal, George V, awarded in 1917 to the Venerable Archdeacon John Richard Hedges Becher, for the gallant rescue of survivors from the SS Alondra came up for sale. The medal was being sold from a private collection and had previously been on public display at the base of Lagan Search & Rescue – the independent lifeboat service for Belfast.  Donations to defray the costs of medal purchase are very welcome as is any additional information concerning the fate of Archdeacon Becher – please contact Tom Bushe.

 

The exact cause of the wrecking of the Alondra is not entirely clear. What is known is that the ship ran aground on Kedge Rock. After its grounding sixteen of the Alondra’s crew were able to get  aboard one of three ship’s lifeboats, 

 

but ended up drowning before they could reach safety. Another man died on board. Meanwhile, the Archdeacon John Richard Hedges

Becher, who was serving as the Honorary Secretary of the Baltimore (RNLI), set out to re

scue the stranded crew. He failed to reach the Alondra on the first try, then again on the second. When the sun rose, they set out a third time. In total, 23 men were rescued from the steamboat with the assistance of Royal Navy trawlers. The RNLI awarded Silver Medals for Gallantry to both Archdeacon Becher and to Lieutenant Sanderson for assisting with t

he rescue. In 1913, the RNLI had established a lifeboat base in Baltimore, which could have been of assistance in rescuing the crew of the Alondra. Unfortunately, the outbreak of the Great War delayed the official opening of the base until 1919.

This famous rescue has been the subject of a recent film as part of the RNLI’s commemoration of the Great War. The film was made in Baltimore and features lifeboat crew alongside a cast drawing from talent in Baltimore Amateur Drama.  The film was last screened in May 2015 in the National Library of Ireland.

John Richard Hedges Becher’s death was announced in the Times on the 7th May 1929. The announcement read “Deaths - At Nakuru Hospital Kenya, after surgery, John R H Becher, Archdeacon of Ross, father of Mar

y Littleton, Ballyheary, Ashford, Co Wickford & Norah Trench, Molo, Kenya. The Southern Star, on the 11th May 1929, also reported “….the death this week of the Venerable Archdeacon Becher….He was the son of the Late Michael Becher of Carriganear, Maulbrack, Skibbereen, and subsequently of Ardralla House, Newcourt, Skibbereen and he was nephew of the late Mr John R H Becher of Lough Ine House, and cousin-German of The Rev Henry Becher, ex Dean of Ross. The late Archdeacon ministered in Youghal…to Castletownsend…to Baltimore…to Bantry…he was instrumental in bringing a Life Boat to Baltimore…for his health he went to Kenyan Colony. Everybody liked & most people loved him.”

News Update

On Sunday May 10th at 16:50 Baltimore Lifeboat responded to a distress call from a fishing boat that had broken down approx. 40 nautical miles south of Baltimore. The vessel was Irish registered at Sligo with a displacement of approx. 100 tonnes, Mizen Head Coast Guard reported 5 people on board at the time that the alert was raised. The all-weather lIfeboat Alan Massey was launched at 17:00 under the command of coxswain K. Cotter, with crew, J. Smith, P. Collins , K. Collins, A. Bushe, B. McSweeney and G. Sheehy as crew. The lifeboat proceeded south and directly into the prevailing swell which made progress slow, about 14 to 17 knots. Wind was from the South Force 5-6, visibility moderate, sea state rough to very rough (2.5-4.0m and 4.0-6.0m) the swell being predominately 3 to 4 metres but at times 5 metres. The distressed vessel was sighted at at 19:35. The lifeboat established a tow at 19:55 shortly after arriving on scene. The return journey was a lot smoother than the journey out and averaged about 6.5knots, making the shelter of Baltimore Harbour at at 02:15 on Monday morning. A falling tide delayed berthing, but eventually the fishing vessel was secured at the pier at 03:20. Coxswain Kieran Cotter commented afterwards ‘it was a difficult shout because of the distance from shore and the weather conditions, its great to have such an experienced crew who performed excellently under arduous conditions” 

On 25 May a flare was sighted in Baltimore Harbour at 2:15. The inshore lifeboat was launched immediately under the command of Helm Jerry Smith and proceeded directly towards the the Cove where a 10 metre yacht which had been attempting to reach her own mooring had fouled her propellor. There were three adult males on board at the time. The lifeboat took a rope from the bow of the yacht to the mooring. Once secured the lifeboat returned to station, the whole operation being completed in 45 minutes. On board the Alice and Charles were Helm Jerry Smith with crew Youen Jacob & John Kearney. Slip crew: Tom Kelly, Rianne Smith & Sean McCarthy

On 20 May a joint exercise was held  on 

combining the efforts of RNLI Baltimore, RNLI Union Hall, Toe Head Coastguard. Schull Community Inshore Rescue & Civil Defence. This was a valuable exercise in anticipation of a busy Summer season when so many people take to the water to enjoy the great boating areas of West Cork. We encourage all boaters to take care and stay safe. We’re always here to help but prevention is the best cure! Respect the Water.

 

Mizen Watch

Categories: News, Sea Safety, Uncategorized
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Published on: June 14, 2015

Following on from last year where a number of thefts took place on the Mizen Head and the Baltimore area An Garda Siochana Schull are launching a Crime prevention campaign for the summer of 2015 aimed at raising awareness with people who own boats, kayaks, canoe’s and any other form of maritime equipment. Please see the information leaflet below or contact Michael Walsh RNLI Sea Safety Officer.

 

Shannon Rescue Helicopter tests new landing site

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Published on: November 24, 2014

Shannon based Rescue 115 visited the field adjacent to Baltimore Lifeboat Station on Saturday 22nd November to test it out as a landing field for casualty evacuation. Following the construction of the ALB berth, the rock spoil extracted was spread over the old field. It was reseeded at the beginning of the summer to create a level area and the helicopter crew commented on the excellent location and suitability.

Relief Trent ‘takes station’

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Published on: November 24, 2014

Following an unexpected mechanical breakdown, whilst on the way to Castletownbere for its 6 monthly haul-out, Baltimore Tamar “Alan Massey” has been placed off service for an extended period. A replacement engine needs to be fitted. A relief boat was allocated and a passage crew travelled to Dun Laoghaire on Saturday 15th November to bring her back over the weekend. If you’re wondering why she looks different – it’s a Trent.

Training exercises were run from Monday to Wednesday by Sean O’Farrell and Stuart Russell of Courtmacsherry LB to ensure the crew were conversant with the different systems. It is unclear how long she will be at station but it is hoped that a Relief Tamar will become available soon.

 

RNLI Sea Safety @ Wooden Boat Festival 2014

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Published on: May 25, 2014

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Sea Safety officer Trevor Whelan and Fundraiser Pamela Deasy with volunteers Molly J Deasy and Liam Deasy.

Irish Times feature Baltimore RNLI Inshore lifeboat in data balloon rescue

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Published on: May 7, 2014

Cork students capture images of Ireland from camera attached to a balloon

Pupils delighted to discover camera survived fall to earth, landing at sea

Barry Roche

First published: Wed, May 7, 2014, 11:21

 

 
Pupils at a Corkschool are celebrating after their entry in an international competition to send a helium balloon into the stratosphere proved successful when they captured some impressive photographs of the earth.The eight pupils from Terence MacSwiney College in Knocknaheeny on the city’s northside, under the guidance of science teacher, Lillian Heylin, spent the past six weeks preparing their entry in the Global Space Balloon Challenge which is organised by academic institutions in the US.

The team made up of William O’Mahony, Aisling Walsh, Rebecca Murphy, Stuart Murphy, Josh Crean, Dominic Kelly, Jamie Twomey and Chloe Lingwood launched the balloon on Friday from the Valentia Observatory in Cahersiveen in Co Kerry with help from Mike Crean of Met Eireann.

Ms Heylin explained that the aim of the challenge, which saw the Cork school compete with post-graduate students at some top international universities, was to see how high the balloon could go before bursting and to capture images with a specially attached digital camera.

“The students had to work out the best position to locate the digital camera in a special styrofoam box and how to ensure it didn’t freeze at really high altitudes where the temperature drops to minus 60 degrees so there was a lot of science involved in doing the project,” she said.

According to Ms Heylin, they estimated that the balloon went up to 23kms in around 90 minutes before bursting and activating a parachute that safely brought the camera and a GPS tracker back to earth only to land in the sea some four miles off Baltimore in West Cork.

Terence MacSwiney College Principal, Willie McAuliffe tracked the balloon’s ascent and descent with the GPS tracker and was able to give the co-ordinates of where it landed to Jerry O’Brien of Valentia Coastguard who passed on the details to Baltimore Inshore Lifeboat.

The camera was recovered by Baltimore Inshore Lifeboat who handed it over to Lifeboat Operations Manager Tom Bushe who returned it to Mr McAuliffe who brought it back to Terence MacSwiney College where the students set about retrieving the photos from the digital camera.

“The kids were just so excited that the camera was recovered first of all and then to discover that it had worked perfectly to capture such fantastic images was a real surprise – they were delighted to get such beautiful pictures and they had such fun on the project, it really was a great success.”

Inshore Lifeboat Helm John Kearney with Pat O’Oriscoll and Conor Dempsey were happy to oblige with the search as part of a scheduled exercise.

http://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/cork-students-capture-images-of-ireland-from-camera-attached-to-a-balloon-1.1786568

 

Sunday Independent feature article on coxswain Kieran Cotter

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Published on: February 7, 2014

The Sunday Independent featured Coxswain Kieran Cotter in it’s Waking Hours column last Sunday 2 February 2014

Screening of SS Alondra Rescue short film

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Published on: February 5, 2014

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A screening of the SS Alondra Rescue filmed as part of the Hope in the Great War project will take place in Jacobs on Thursday 6 th February at 9:15pm.

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