This is the first in a series of articles featuring RNLI lifeboat stations around the coasts of the United Kingdom and Ireland.
Criccieth lifeboat station was established in 1854 when the Royal National Lifeboat Instutiton (RNLI) took over the Porthmadog lifeboat from the Shipwrecked Firshermen and Mariners’ Royal Benevolent Society and transferred it to it’s current location. However, it was still known as the Porthmadog Lifeboat until 1982 when it recommissioned as the Criccieth Lifeboat following the rebuilding of the boathouse in 1892 at a cost of £600 – how times change.
Despite being able to trace it’s history back over 155 years, Criccieth lifeboat station cannot claim that period as continuous service. When a motor lifeboat was located a few miles along the coast at Pwllheli in 1931 the Criccieth lifeboat station was closed and remained so until it was reopened in July 1953.
In 1967 Ciriccieth received its first ‘modern’ lifeboat, a D class inflatable inshore lifeboat – the all-weather boat was withdrawn from service the following year. 1983 saw Criccieth Lifeboat upgraded to a larger C class boat and then finally to an Atlantic 21 B class lifeboat in 1993. The ’21 was soon replaced by a larger Atlantic 75 B class boat the following year.
Two boats are now housed at Criccieth, a new Atlantic 85 B class and a small Arancia A class which is currently on trial with the RNLI and is ideal for getting right in to the shallow craggy coastline.
The crews of the Criccieth Lifeboat have received 9 awards over the years, including five Silver Medals for Gallantry.