End of era as Cromer RNLI says goodbye to eighth generation lifeboatman

Flashback. John Davies as coxswain unveils the plaque to Henry Blogg at Blogg Cottage, Corner Street

Flashback. John Davies as coxswain unveils the plaque to Henry Blogg at Blogg Cottage, Corner Street Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

It marked the end of an era as Cromer RNLI said goodbye to long-serving members including coxswain John Davies at a presentation evening.

Cromer fisherman John Davies.PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

Cromer fisherman John Davies.PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

During Mr Davies' 36 years of dedicated service he crewed and skippered several RNLI lifeboats, most recently the state-of-the-art Tamar class Lester.

His skill, courage and knowledge of the local waters were well-known as demonstrated by the many rescues he was involved in.

Mr Davies, who was the eighth generation of his family to serve on the lifeboats, was presented with an oil painting and vellum which described his service to Cromer RNLI.

His family proudly watched the presentations from Cromer and Sheringham RNLI stations, and Lee Firman, area lifesaving manager for the charity, made a presentation to Mr Davies. Mr Davies' distinguished family history includes Henry Blogg and his own father Richard William Davies.

The evening also recognised other long-serving crew members who have retired.

These included Peter Stokes, who was a relief mechanic as well as a crew member, Martin Steward, senior helmsman, and Jason King, crew member.

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Gordon Nichols, who is a serving member of Cromer RNLI, was presented with a long service award at the event, which was held at Northrepps Cottage on Saturday, November 17,

Richard Leeds, RNLI lifeboat operations manager, said: 'Cromer RNLI has a lot to thank John, Martin, Peter and Jason for and we hope the presentation evening has shown how much they were valued as part of this station.

'From myself and the crew we hope they enjoy their retirement from the RNLI and they are always welcome to visit us. Gordon continues to be a valuable member of our crew.'

Mr Davies, who left at the end of June, was replaced by joint coxswains, long-serving lifeboat crew members Ady Barker and Ady Woods, who share almost 50 years of service with the RNLI between them.

Mr Davies said: 'The crew have been my family for the last 30 years. The lifeboat has been in Cromer for over 200 years and we are merely custodians of it at a certain time. It will carry on for years long after we've all gone.'