Margate’s RNLI lifeboat crew updates 127 year old photo record

Margate RNLI lifeboat crew and HM Coastguard officers in 1897

By Peter Barker

In the year the RNLI commemorates its 200th anniversary the volunteer crew at Margate lifeboat station, together with others who keep the local seafaring community safe, have recreated a photographic record that began 127 years ago.

The RNLI lifeboat station at Margate was established in 1860 and in 1897 a photo was taken of the pulling and sailing lifeboat Quiver No.1 on its carriage in the harbour, the crew proudly posing for the camera with their lifeboat along with local coastguard officers.

Margate RNLI lifeboat crew and Margate Coastguard officers in 1997 RNLI Photo Mike Duncan

In 1997, and to mark the passing of 100 years, the image was re-created as close as possible to the original except of course by now with the Mersey class all-weather lifeboat Leonard Kent on its carriage and hauled by a powerful tractor compared to the team of horses in 1897. A fast inshore lifeboat, introduced in 1966 was present for the first time and once again local coastguard officers, an integral part of the maritime rescue community were included.

By 2024 much had changed again, the all-weather lifeboat had been replaced by a B class inshore lifeboat and since the 1997 photo RNLI seasonal lifeguards had also become part of the lifesaving community, keeping Thanet’s busy main beaches safe.

The tradition of volunteers giving their time to save lives at sea has not changed however and the RNLI’s 200th anniversary was seen as the ideal time to update the photographic record, once again recording the station’s evolution.

Margate RNLI lifeboat crew, RNLI Lifeguards and Margate Coastguard officers 2024 (Photo RNLI – Peter Barker)

The latest image therefore comprises the B class and D class inshore lifeboats and their crews, representatives from the local RNLI Lifeguards and of course once again members of the local Coastguard Rescue Team.

Derek Amas, Lifeboat Operations Manager, RNLI Margate said: “We have countless photos, both print and digital of the hundreds of volunteers who have served operationally over the station’s 164 year history but these images against the same backdrop which interestingly has changed very little, serve to illustrate what is at the heart of the station, the volunteer crew and of course the lifeboats themselves.”

1 Comment

  1. Amazing celebration of the history of the RNLI in Margate.
    Long live Margate Lifeboat station and it’s lifeboats saving more lives at sea.

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