Blyth RNLI launched to assist the Tall Ship Williams II

The volunteer crew from Blyth RNLI saw the sunrise on Monday 2 July 2018 as their pagers sounded at 3.46am.

The Tall Ship Williams II had run aground East of Blyth Pier and UK Coastguard had requested that the volunteer crew assist the casualty vessel.

The B Class Atlantic 75 Vic & Billie Whiffen was launched at 3.57am with a salvage pump on board in case it was required.

The 100 gross tonne Tall Ship with ten persons on board was clearly visible to the volunteer crew as the sun was rising and they made the short journey arriving on scene at 4.01am.

It was soon established that the Williams II had managed to free itself and start to make its own way back to the Port of Blyth. There wasn’t any noticeable damage to the vessel and all ten of the ships crew were all safe and well.

The lifeboat accompanied the Tall Ship back to its berth on the River Blyth which is situated next door to the RNLI Lifeboat Station.

The Blyth UK Coastguard unit were also in attendance and met the Tall Ship at its berth.

At 4.30am the Vic & Billie Whiffen was made ready for service.

Clive Gray, the skipper of the Williams II, says: “I am grateful to the volunteer crew from Blyth RNLI for coming out to ensure that we were safe this morning and for them to escort us back to our berth on the River Blyth. On behalf of myself and the crew we liked to say ‘Thank you’ to the RNLI for their assistance this morning.”

Barry Pearson, Lifeboat Operations Manager at Blyth RNLI says: “We are pleased that our neighbours, the Blyth Tall Ship project vessel Williams II, was able to make its own way safely back to its berth with no apparent damage and that all the crew were safe and well.”

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