Caister Lifeboat - 40 Years of Independence!
Caister Lifeboat

Bernard Matthews II

The Dutch built Valentijn, which slashed response times by more than half, replaced The Bernard Matthews lifeboat, which had been going to the rescue of seafarers off the coast of Great Yarmouth for 12 years.

The Valentijn cost just over £450,000. Coxswain Paul Willams put the boat through its paces during three days of trials in Holland. He said: "The handling capability during the sea tests was superb, everything I asked it to do it did. "At one stage I had 50 people on board and the boat still remained very stable."

The Bernard Matthews II uses steerable water jets from twin engines instead of propellers and rudders, so as well as its speed it will also have the advantage of being more manoeuvrable. By 2005, all lifeboats had to be capable of doing speeds of 27 knots. As the Bernard Matthews could only get up to 16 knots, the lifeboat crew and committee decided to move and opt for a 10-ton jet-propelled boat that can travel up to speeds of 37 knots.

Watch the naming Ceremony with Prince Charles.

entering harbour2

 hitting wave

Bernard Matthews II Specifications
Operational Number 37-01
Call Sign MDUD6
Year of build 2004
Yard of build Habbeké Shipyard, Volendam
Technical Data  
Classification  All Weather Lifeboat
Propultion  2 x Hamilton Waterjets
Launch Method  Carriage/afloat
Selfrighting  Yes
Selfrighting Type  Inherent
Hull Type  Planning
Hull & Superstructure Material  Aluminium
Length  11,00 m
Beam  4,10 m
Draught  0,75 m
Displacement  10 ton
Speed  37 knots
Engines  2 x 450 hp Volvo Penta
Endurance  6 hours
Fuel Capacity  1.270 litres
Survivor Capacity  50
Crew  4

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The Lifeboat Station, Tan lane, Caister-on-Sea, Norfolk NR30 5DJ