Lifeboat comes to the aid of two boats at Beachy Head

Eastbourne lifeboat gives a tow
Eastbourne lifeboat gives a tow

IT WAS a busy weekend for Eastbourne’s all weather lifeboat as its crew was called out twice in one afternoon.

The RNLI team had to help two completely different boats on Saturday afternoon – a 26ft sailing ship stranded at Beachy Head and then a 25 tonne ex-lifeboat with engine problems.

The first incident involved the sailing boat. It was carrying two people and had run into difficulties while rounding Beachy Head.

With failing winds the skipper was forced to use his engine to try and combat the effects of the tide but unfortunately it malfunction – leaving the boat drifting helplessly. The RNLI team were quickly on the spot and towed the yacht to Sovereign Harbour. As the volunteer crew were entering harbour another distress call was received, this time to a 25 tonne all steel former Thames class lifeboat. The vessel, now in private ownership, was one of only two built for the RNLI and was in service from the 1970s up until 1997. Its crew almost completely ran out of fuel and the boat was unable to make its way against the tide around Beachy Head.

The boat was towed to the outer harbour.