RNLI Fowey Cornwall

The town of Fowey, located in Cornwall, on the southern most bank is well known for its commercial fishing industry and exporting of china clay. What follows, however, is a time line of other events that pertain for Fowey that you may not know! There are a lot of men responsible for protecting the area and this list pertains to the rescuers and their honors earned for heroic service.

In 1826 the gold medal was given to Lieutenant Else RN for rescuing eight crewmen from the ship named “Providence” off the island of Polkerris.
1829 saw a silver medal being awarded to the Chief Officer of the Coast Guard, Thomas Crosswall. He rescued five souls from a ship that was sinking, the Diligence.
The year of 1856 saw silver medals being awarded to Coastguard Captain Norcock RN, Thomas Henwood as well as Richard Jones for their rescue of the only survivor of a wrecked schooner named Endeavor.

A life boat station was formed at Polkerris in 1959. What’s interesting here is that over the years the station had been known by several names, based on locations in the surrounding area such as Polkerris or Fowey.

A silver medal was awarded in 1865 to Coxswain Joshua Heath for rescuing 13 crewmen from the barque Dryden as well as 9 more men from the brigantine Wearmouth which was stranded at the island of Par Sands during a particularly fierce hurricane.
William Robbins, Edwin Robins George Bishop and Frederick Perring were all awarded silver medals in 1893 for the rescue of two crew members from the Dieu Protégé which had capsized.

William Penrose had been awarded a silver medal in 1906 for his attempts, though ultimately failing, to rescue the crew of brigantine Mary which had been shipwrecked.
In 1922 the RNLI formed a lifeboat station at Fowey. The lifeboat that was there was kept afloat. The previous station located in Polkerris was closed.
Just six years later in 1928 the very first motorized lifeboat arrived.
In 1947 a bronze medal was awarded to Coxswain Joseph Watters. He rescued seven crew members from the motor vessel Empire Contamar in Par Bay.

1958 The Thanks of the Institution Inscribed on Vellum was awarded to Assistant Mechanic J Turpin who swam ashore from the lifeboat to assist two people cut off by the tide.
2003 A Framed Letter of Thanks was awarded to Helmsman Marius Lewis for rescuing three adults and four children cut off by the tide and in difficult surf conditions at Silver Mine beach.

2006 A Framed Letter of Thanks signed by the Chairman of the Institution was awarded to Coxswain Keith Stuart in recognition of the contribution made by him and his crew when the Fowey ALB assisted in the service to the m/v Galina.

The history of Fowey is colorful no doubt, but little has ever been said about the heroic deeds of the citizens whom call Fowey home. Fishing in open waters is a difficult job and a dangerous one. These men risked their lives for others and deserve recognition.

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