A key member of the Broughty Ferry lifeboat crew is currently away for a major facelift.
Elizabeth of Glamis, the crew’s all-weather lifeboat (ALB), is making her way to RNLI headquarters in Poole for her 10-yearly refit.
In the decade since she last underwent a service, the Trent class lifeboat has been involved in around 400 rescue missions, saving lives and keeping sailors and maritime pleasure-seekers safe in the Tay and North Sea.
Coxswain of Broughty Ferry lifeboat crew, Murray Brown, said: “Our ALB is obviously regularly maintained by our own mechanics in Broughty Ferry but once every 10 years she has to go for a complete overhaul and refit.
“This is a major undertaking and costs thousands of pounds.”
Murray said that he sailed the lifeboat to Eyemouth at the start of the week and handed her over to another crew to take her all the way to Poole, hopefully arriving by the weekend.
She will remain there for a couple of months while the work is carried out, before being returned to Broughty Ferry.
Murray said that in the meantime a relief lifeboat was on standby in Broughty Ferry.
He said: “Obviously we can’t be without an ALB and there is a spare one that can go around Scotland wherever it is needed.
“The work on our own boat will include an overhaul of the engine and other vital equipment and she will also be spruced up generally.”
He said that in 20 years at Broughty Ferry Elizabeth of Glamis had been involved in around 6,800 shouts and had helped save numerous lives in many memorable and difficult situations.
Murray said: “We have used her when we have pulled people out of the Tay and saved their lives and, sadly, she has also been used when we have had to pull bodies out of the water.
“She has rescued stricken paddleboarders and jet skiers and towed stricken vessels to safety.
“Her first shout of 2020 was being on standby as members of Extinction Rebellion got themselves to the top of the oil rigs at Dundee Port and then took cold feet in the strengthening winds.”
Murray said that, as with everything associated with the funding of the RNLI, boat refurbishment costs had to come from public funding.
He said: “We continue to work as hard as ever, as does the boat. However, this year has been especially difficult for us as we have not been able to hold the majority of our usual fundraising events.
“We hope that people continue to support us and would appeal to the pubic to keep donations coming in.”
The Elizabeth of Glamis is a Trent class lifeboat designed to lie afloat, either at deep-water moorings or at a berth.
Introduced in 1994, it shares the same hull shape as the Severn class but is a smaller version.
The sheerline sweeps down for ease of survivor recovery.
As with the Severn, its propellers are protected so it can take ground without damage.