Courtown volunteer RNLI lifeboat crew and their supporters gathered on Saturday 24 April 2010 to officially name their new IB1 lifeboat Cairde an Chuain
. The name means Friends of the Harbour and was chosen in memory of Courtown lifeboat crew who have passed away.The lifeboat and was made possible through a community appeal, which raised over €48,000 for the provision of the lifeboat and crew training. Members of Seafield Golf and Country Club selected the RNLI Courtown appeal as their chosen charity for a year and raised thousands of euro towards the cost of the new lifeboat.Chairman of the RNLI Irish Council and Trustee for the charity, John Coyle underlined the importance of the lifeboat to Courtown: ‘Every year sees an influx of visitors to this place, many of whom are drawn to the beautiful beaches and the great hospitality of the locals. We are fortunate to have a dedicated team of lifeboat volunteers on hand day or night to help those who find themselves in difficulty at sea. I wish Courtown lifeboat crew many successful launches and safe returns.’Sam Kennedy, Courtown RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager added, ‘We are extremely grateful to everyone who gave so generously to our appeal. This improved D class lifeboat will allow our volunteer crews to respond more quickly in emergencies and may well make the difference between life and death for someone in trouble on the water.’
Representatives from six families of crewmembers who have passed away officially named the lifeboat. Eileen O’Byrne, Eileen Redmond, James Sinnott, Linda Hurney, Mona Sheehan and John Redmond helped pour champagne over the bow of the lifeboat before it was launched into the sea and cheered on by the crowd.
Cairde an Chuain D711 has replaced D548 Star of the Sea. The previous lifeboat came into service in 1999 and was retired in August 2009. The new lifeboat is five metres in length and can take three crew onboard. It has a range of three hours at maximum speed of 25 knots.
- Niamh Stephenson, Divisional Media Relations Manager