SKEGNESS lifeboat’s annual trip to the Lynn Well lightship in the middle of the Wash on Saturday could be the last one. For at some time in the near future the lightship is due to be replaced by a remotely controlled buoy.
It could be next year, though the master, Mr Billy Holmes, thought it more likely they would still be there next Christmas.
The coxswain, Mr Ken Holland, and a crew of six took a Christmas tree, fruit, cigarettes, drink, a turkey, Christmas puddings pork pies and reading materials, given’ by Skegness people, to enable the lightship crew to share in the festivities during their lonely vigil.
With them went the urban council chairman, Coun Dr David Pendrigh, Dr Alex Jamie son, the – lifeboat station secretary, treasurer and assistant secretary, Messrs Neville Ball, Harvey Gillanders and Basil Major, photographer, Norman Beckett and two radio operators from the Humber radio station.
The sea was calm and the weather was very misty. They lost sight of the shore two miles out and were half a mile from the vessel before they saw its light.
Long before that, however, they could hear the mournful sound of its foghorn.
They left at 1.15 pm, spent 45 minutes aboard, and returned at 4.30 pm, the voyage being speeded up by the fact that the tide changed so that it was behind them both ways.
On Monday the crew were out in the lifeboat again for 45 minutes testing a new radio which replaced the original set it had in 1964.
“I’m very happy with it,” said Mr Holland on their return. “It’s very nice, much more powerful and effective.” It was now possible to pickup Cromer coastguards very clearly and transmit to them, he added.
Picture: Coun Dr David Pendrigh dons a lifeboatman’s cap to present a Christmas tree to the master of Lynn Well lightship on Saturday. But to give the ceremony the civic dignity it deserved he made sure he was wearing his council chairman’s chain of office over his jersey ! (Photo : Norman Beckett.)