The Bernard Matthews has been the busiest lifeboat ever on the station, carrying out many remarkable rescues. The sad epic on the 8th - 9th December 1993 truly demonstrated why Caister has the motto "Caister Men Never Turn Back", but whilst no one was saved the letter from the commander of HMS Nottingham is clear.
On the 1st October 1995 the yacht "Sequina" was aground on the Scroby Sands in a force 7 gale. Dick Thurlow and the crew plucked 4 people from the capsized vessel. This was after the previous Sunday the crew had rescued 9 people aboard the Dutch yacht "Madame".
Another heroic rescue took place on the 27th July 2000, when the Caister lifeboat provided assistance to the yacht ZIPPA
Recently the CVRS changed its title to CVLS - Caister Volunteer Lifeboat Service a more appropriate name for the organistaion.
Once again time has caught up with the lifeboat, The Bernard Matthews, though still a superb sea boat ideal for the conditions offshore Caister, now design & technology has advanced apace since the mid 80s when the boat was designed.
Today water jets have replaced propellers. Therefore the officers of the Caister Lifeboat have been for the last 18 months evaluating a replacement for the present vessel, and have concluded following exhaustive tests that the Dutch KNRM have the lifeboat for the job, perfectly suiting the needs of the station in future.
|Bernard Matthews Lifeboat Specification|
|Years on station||August 1991 - 2004|
|Donor||Local Appeal and generous donation by Bernard Matthews|
|Builder||Lochin Marine, Rye; fitted out by Goodchilde Marine Services, Burgh Castle|
|Dimensions||Length 38ft 6in, breadth 10ft 8in|
|Engines||Twin 282hp Ford Sabre diesels, speed 18 knots|
|Disposal||Sold to Blyth Valley Lifeboat Service, renamed Spirit of Blyth and Wansbeck|