Seaford Lifeguards’ new rescue boat named officially

The new Arancia rescue boat.
The new Arancia rescue boat.

A new rescue boat for Seaford Lifeguards which cost almost £13,000 was officially named in a ceremony on Monday September 23.

The event at Seaford Lifeguards Headquarters on the beach was attended by the mayor of Seaford Anthony White and the vice chair of Lewes District Council Ian White.

The inshore rescue boat means lifeguards will be able to keep residents and visitors safer.

Lifeguards membership secretary Sue Gwilliam said: “The weather could not have been better and the turnout for the event was brilliant.

“Everything just went so well and everyone was ecstatic that we have a second boat.

“Now they have got this second boat Seaford Bay will be safer for residents and visitors than ever before.”

The new inshore rescue boat was named Michael Overbury in a tribute to Mr Michael Overbury MBE, long serving member of Seaford Lifeguards and current Vice President.

Michael served in the Royal Navy during World War II and is a D-Day veteran.

The boat was blessed by the Lifeguards’ Chaplain, the Reverend Paul Owen.

Invited guests were treated to a rescue demonstration using the new boat.

The Arancia is specially designed for lifeguards and is built in New Zealand.

In fact it was designed by John and Chris Speight, former residents of Seaford, who now living in New Zealand. 

They were visiting the UK and were able to attend the ceremony.

Sue added: “They couldn’t believe our old boat was four years old. The lifeguards really appreciate that boat. They look after it so well.”

The Arancia has now become the industry standard for lifeguard teams all over the world.

Seaford Lifeguards is a declared rescue facility with HM Coastguard. It now has two Arancia in shore rescue boats available. The original Andy Allan is now four years old.

Amongst those attending the event were Seaford Town Council clerk Sam Shippen, Ian Kedge and Tony Still from Environmental Health and many other friends and supporters of the Lifeguards including HM Coastguard and the Seahaven branch of the Royal Society of St George.

The cost of the complete boat with engine and trailer came to more than £12,800.

Money was raised by Seaford Lifeguards with big donations from Seaford Head Community College and Seaford Town Council.

Donations were also made by the Seaford Bonfire Society and Seaford Live. The ceremony finished with light refreshments served in the boathouse. 

The extra boat is designed to provide back up for the first boat, enabling quicker response times and improving safety standards at Seaford Bay.

It will also enable them to carry out more training for volunteer lifeguards from other parts of the UK.

The lifeguards are tasked by the Coastguard to emergencies at Seaford Bay and to Cuckmere Haven.