64 Years at the Helm of the RNLI
RNLI lifeboat crew have shared their memories of meeting the Queen as Her Majesty’s 90th birthday celebrations get into full swing. Since becoming the charity’s Patron, 64 years ago in 1952, Her Majesty has visited lifeboat stations throughout Wales and met with a number of Welsh crew members. This includes crew from Burry Port, Holyhead and Rhyl lifeboat stations.
RNLI Chairman Charles Hunter-Pease said: ‘The respect, fondness and admiration that our lifeboat crews have for our Patron is incredibly apparent. If you look at any photos of the Queen’s visits to our stations, all of the lifeboat crew and supporters that she meets are beaming from ear to ear. It is a hugely special moment to have your hard work and dedication recognised in that way. We are extremely appreciative of all the Queen’s support over the years.’
The RNLI have selected some of their favourite photographs and memories from when volunteers have met the Queen over the years to celebrate her 64 years of support for their volunteers.
Paul Frost – Rhyl Lifeboat Station
Paul Frost, Deputy Second Coxswain at Rhyl, met the Queen in 2011 when he went to Buckingham Palace to receive his MBE for outstanding service to the RNLI. He said: ‘I was 14 when I started going down to the lifeboat station in 1968. I lived opposite the station and when the rockets went off to signal a call out I’d drag my father down with me and we’d help out the shore crew. I was extremely proud to receive my MBE for outstanding RNLI service and it was a real thrill going down to the palace. I’d been to the Palace with my mother 18 months previously when she received her MBE which was awarded by Prince Charles, so it was really exciting when I looked at the service sheet and saw that the Queen herself would be presenting mine. The Queen was a really lovely lady, who put everyone at ease and was very genuine. My wife had a front row seat for the occasion and said that she doesn’t know how the Queen managed to stand for the entire two hours without even flinching once. When it was my turn to receive the award I had a conversation with her about the lifeboats. All in all, it was a very memorable day.’
- Photo credit: RNLI
- For photos please click on the links below:
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- For more photos please follow this link
- Her Majesty The Queen has been Patron of the RNLI since 1952. She took on the role when George VI died. His obituary in the Lifeboat magazine stated that he continued the tradition that the reigning sovereign be the head of the Lifeboat Service. He became President in 1936 when King Edward VIII came to the throne and following the abdication later that year he became Patron.