| The Hibbert
FOR THOSE IN PERIL IN THE SEA
A True Story of the Heroism and Stamina of a Whitby Lifeboat Crew
|Teachers may care to use this account in collective worship
|Those of you who have been to Whitby or Robin Hood's Bay will know how wild the coastline is in this part of Yorkshire. The sea can be very dangerous as there are many rocks lying off the coast.
|One terribly stormy day more than a hundred years ago, on 19 January 1881, a vessel named the Visiter ran onto rocks off Robin Hood's Bay.
|The men of the Whitby lifeboat were contacted. But the weather was appalling. It was bitterly cold. There were high winds and a violent snowstorm. The coxswain knew that the lifeboat crew could not hope to survive the six-mile voyage to Robin Hood's Bay. There was no point in even putting the lifeboat out.
|But they could not just leave the crew of the Visiter to perish.
|John Storr, the second cox, decided that there was only one thing to do: they must take the lifeboat by land, over the cliffs, to Robin Hood's Bay and put out to sea from there.
|You can imagine what a struggle they had, up and down the rugged cliff route, pushing and tugging the boat, the Robert Whitworth, through ice and snowdrifts, in the freezing cold.
|But at last they reached Robin Hood's Bay. They pushed the boat out and began to row towards the stricken ship. But the wind and waves drove them back ashore and some of their oars were smashed.
|Still they set out again. They reached the crew of the Visiter who had, by now, left the sinking ship and taken to the ship's boat. And they were able to bring them all ashore. The whole rescue took only four hours from setting off from Whitby.
|And remember that these men, who showed such courage and stamina, are volunteers who do their job without any thought of reward.
|(Retold from Heroes of the Whitby Lifeboat by W.B. Pickering)
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