A NEW lifeboat is now in service at Newbiggin.
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution’s Atlantic 85 boat named the Richard Wake Burdon, replaces the Atlantic 75th Anniversary CSMA, the town’s lifeboat for the past 14 years.
The £180,000 new arrival, paid for by a legacy, is the town’s 13th lifeboat since 1851.
Newbiggin RNLI lifeboat operations manager Les Fayers said: “The CSMA 75th Anniversary has served us extremely well for over 14 years, but we are looking forward to having the additional capability that the updated Atlantic 85 brings.
“The crew have already put her through her paces and have been impressed with the extra speed and new kit like radar, which will help them carry out their role more safely and effectively than ever before.”
Station mechanic Richard Martin added: “The lifeboat has been provided by a generous legacy from north east man, Hylton Burdon, who died in 2002.
“His legacy to the charity funded an Atlantic 85 lifeboat for Cullercoats RNLI in 2007, named Hylton Burdon.
“Newbiggin’s new vessel will be named Richard Wake Burdon in memory of Hylton’s brother, who was lost at sea while serving in the Royal Navy in the 1940s.
“We are so grateful to Mr Burdon for his generosity and will remember both him and his brother each time we launch on a rescue mission.”
The Atlantic 85 class is the first RNLI inshore lifeboat to have radar, allowing it to operate more effectively in reduced visibility.
It is also faster and bigger than its predecessor, with room for a fourth crew member, as well as more space for casualties.