STAITHES and Runswick lifeboat station has been given a new lease of life following the completion of its re-development.
The boathouse and crewroom at the station in Cowbar, Staithes have both undergone extensive re-development in a makeover that Staithes and Runswick lifeboat’s deputy launching authority Colin Harrison estimates has cost “in excess of £250,000.”
Mr Harrison said: “We received a donation of £240,000 towards the re-development and and we estimate that in total it has cost in excess of £250,000 to complete.
“Work began immediately after Lifeboat Weekend last year and it has taken nine months to complete all of the work.
“Due to the station being a listed building and residing in a national park conservation area there have been plenty of problems and logistical difficulties to overcome.
“The crew have endured a lot of disruption however it has all been worthwhile in the end because the result is an amazingly different facility.
“We now have more space, better access, it is easier for us to train and we are able to store and look after all of our equipment better.”
The main reason for the re-development was to create enough space to allow a new lifeboat – which is both taller and wider than Staithes’ current boat – to be housed at the station in the future.
The boathouse floor was lowered and re-surfaced and the rear of the building was removed and extended backwards to create more spance and provide better access.
The interior of the boathouse was re-furbished and new front doors fitted.
The station’s adjoining crewroom has been completely re-buit, a process which entailed replacing the bricks at the front of the building exactly as they were originally laid when the room was constructed 18 years ago.
Crew member Alex Godby added: “The station looks a lot more professional now and is certainly much nicer inside.
“The re-development is something that was needed and something that we can all be proud of.
“A lot of people will walk past the station who will have donated money to the RNLI and it is nice for them to be able to see where their money has gone.”