A new Atlantic 85 lifeboat for Clifden RNLI is to be officially named ‘Joyce King’ during a ceremony at the lifeboat station in the Connemara town at 2pm on Saturday November 9. The lifeboat, which went on service in June, was funded by a legacy from the late John Charles King in memory of his wife Joyce.
John from Lincolnshire in England passed away in 2009 and expressed a wish that a gift in his will would be used to purchase an inshore lifeboat named after his wife, Joyce.
John and Joyce both worked for the electricity board, and it is not known where John’s RNLI support stemmed from. However, his generosity has funded a wide variety of essential lifesaving equipment and facilities, including mobile lifeguard units and refurbishments at Mablethorpe, Sutton-On-Sea, and Skegness, and another Atlantic 85 lifeboat. His generosity also helped to fund the Tamar class lifeboat at Sennen Cove in the south of England.
Mr King’s wish to have a lifeboat named in memory of his wife Joyce will be granted when Jackie O’Grady, chairman of the Clifden RNLI lifeboat management group, officially names the lifeboat at the station next Saturday.
“This is a very special occasion for our lifeboat station and we are most grateful to the late John King for his generous legacy which has funded this lifeboat, ‘Joyce King’. Since the lifeboat went on service earlier this year, it has had seven call outs and brought 22 people to safety,” says John Brittain, Clifden RNLI lifeboat operations manager. “ The station also has a D Class inshore lifeboat and in the near future an all-weather lifeboat will be going on a year’s trial here. This is a challenging part of the coastline and the new Atlantic 85 lifeboat will assist our volunteer crew as they go about their lifesaving work.”
The RNLI established a lifeboat station in Clifden in early 1988 when a C class lifeboat was put on service for one season’s evaluation. The following year Clifden RNLI became fully operational as a summer season only lifeboat station.
A new Atlantic 75 B class lifeboat was placed on service in 1999 where it remained stationed until June when it was replaced by the Atlantic 85, the latest version of the B class. Fast, manoeuvrable, and reliable, the B class operates in rough weather conditions, capable in daylight up to force seven, and at night, to force six winds. The ship is powered by two 115 horsepower engines and has a stronger hull and greater top speed than her predecessor. The added radar allows the crew to operate more effectively in poor visibility and she also has VHF direction-finding equipment. The Atlantic 85 carries a full suite of communication and electronic navigation aids, as well as a searchlight, night-vision equipment, and flares for night-time operations.
The RNLI is a charity which relies on voluntary contributions and legacies.