The Hibbert Assembly
FOR THOSE IN PERIL IN THE SEA
Britains youngest lifeboat crews
|The youngest lifeboat crews in Britain are aged between 16 and 18.
|They are students at Atlantic College, St.Donat's, on the coast of south Wales.
|The college was founded for sixth-form students in 1962 by Kurt Hahn whose motto was "There is more in you than you think". It brings together some 350 young men and women (equal numbers of each) from 70 countries, giving them a sound education and putting before them the ideals of responsibility towards others, concern for the planet, and peaceful co-existence. All students are expected to undertake a programme of community service.
|The first principal was Admiral Desmond Hoare. He realised that there was a need for a lifeboat at St.Donat's and believed that his students had the ability to learn how to operate it. He designed a "rigid hull" inflatable vessel which would be especially appropriate for use in shallow coastal waters.
|The college became an RNLI lifeboat station and Admiral Hoare's design (named Atlantic 21) was adopted by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution for some 60 of the lifeboats situated round Britain's coasts.
|There are 40 students in training at Atlantic College for work as lifeboat men and women. From these the actual crews are selected.
|They operate in waters which have strong currents, 15m tides and, often, Atlantic gales. Since the lifeboat station was established, the students have saved almost 100 lives and have been called out to hundreds of other incidents.
|The first female coxswain of an RNLI lifeboat was an Atlantic College student.
|Visit the Atlantic College web pages:
to the Hibbert Assembly Main Index
Return to Those in peril on the sea index