Home » News » Page 2

Category: News

The Silver Jubilee Garden Crawl June 9th 2013

History of the Garden Crawl

The first garden crawl was in June 1989. It was started by the late Bunny Kessell, of Hall Terrace, with a logo of poppies painted in watercolours by the late Dr. Ruth Kemp of Pontantwn, a logo still used to this day. In that first year there were just seven gardens, but they tended to be the larger and more mature ones. Programmes and posters were hand written by Bunny, photocopied and delivered around the area by a conscripted Bean obeying orders. Bunny ran it for some years and retained a watching brief even when allowing her protégé to do the donkey work.

Over the last 25 years (1989 – 2013) there have been more than 50 gardens that have offered themselves for viewing, and in one year alone there were 24 gardens open. Just once we had to cancel due to the foot and mouth epidemic when four of our venues involved working farms.

Thank to villagers and visitors thousands of pounds has been raised for the lifeboat, although in one year the proceeds went towards developing the children’s play park.

We also owe a debt of gratitude to Nerys, and the late, Dave Pearson of Whitethorn Nurseries for many years of sponsorship; and lattely to John and Josie Cavill of the Three Rivers Hotel for their continuing sponsorship to the present.

Recently some gardeners have set up various stalls to increase fundraising and to create more of an attraction, and the Ferryside Jazz Band have provided “entertainment” for a number of years.

We at Ferryside Lifeboat thank all who have supported this worthy cause over the last 25 years. Here’s to the next…

Garden Crawl
Silver Jubilee Year


New Video

Here’s a new video carefully crafted by Senior Coxswain Anthony Rees. Some footage taken during last Wednesday’s training session in beautiful sunny Ferryside.


Remember training sessions are at 7pm every Wednesday at the Lifeboat Station. There are weekend training sessions – times subject to tides.

New Years Day Dip – Update

We are pleased to announce that the annual New Years Day Dip is going from strength to strength. A big thank you to all the new faces who turned up this year as well as all the regular supporters of the lifeboat.

Coxswains Andy Morgan, Mike Hackfort and Mike Utting looking cold!
Coxswains Andy Morgan, Mike Hackfort and Mike Utting looking cold!

It was a very cold day and a longer run to the sea this year but that didn’t stop a number of brave and foolhardy souls from jumping in. We are still waiting for more pictures to come in but to see a short video of the action just click here.

Also a big thank you to the River Towy Yacht Club for allowing the event to run in front of the premises and for being so hospitable on the day.



Ferryside Lifeboat Annual New Years Day Dip 2013

It’s nearly Christmas and it’s time to advertise the annual New Years Day Dip. We are especially pleased to note the cold weather at the moment so it looks like this year is going to be a very cold dip.

Lifeboat Swim 2013
Lifeboat Swim 2013

As usual you can expect some of the crew members to be dressed up and probably not looking their finest.

Please come along and join in the fun. It’s 12.00 sharp, at the Foreshore in Ferryside, outside the Lifeboat Station.

We promise Andy won’t wear his mankini….

Andy in his mankini
Andy in his mankini

Welsh Open Water Estuary Swim

We are pleased to announce that we will be running our annual ‘Big Swim’ again in 2013. The swim, started three years ago by Coxswain James Littlejohns, has grown from strength to strength. So much so that next year we are renaming it the Welsh Open Water Estuary Swim.

Please click on the ‘Welsh Open Water Estuary Swim’ link in the sidebar on the left for more details. Application packs will be available to download from that page soon.

Welsh Open Water Estuary Swim

Ferryside Lifeboat Autumn Show

We are pleased to announce that our annual Autumn Show will be held at the Three Rivers Hotel and Spa on Saturday October 24th 2012.

As usual we have free food provided by the Three Rivers who have been great supporters of the lifeboat over the years. We will also have musical entertainment from Marc Davies who will be performing a range of hits live. All to be followed by a DJ for the rest of the evening.

Tickets are £7.50 and that includes all the food an entertainment. Bargain! Remember every penny raised goes directly to the lifeboat.

marc tribute poster
Marc Davies

It’s going to be a great night. Hope to see you there.


Visit by Jonathan Edwards MP

Sunday 21st October 2012 saw Mr. Jonathan Edwards MP for Carmarthen East and Dinefwr. We were very pleased to be able to show Mr. Edwards the work that we do here in Ferryside and we thank him for the support that he has offered us.

JonEdwardsMP Ferryside Lifeboat

Mr. Edwards later tweeted “Profiad bythgofiadwy ar bad achub glanyfferi ym mae caerfyrddin. Unforgettable experience on ferryside lifeboat in carmarthen bay” You can follow Mr. Edwards on @JonathanPlaid.

Naming Ceremony and Service of Dedication of the Ferryside Lifeboat

Saturday the 1st September 2012 saw the naming ceremony and service of dedication of the Ferryside Lifeboat.

The service dedications were led by the Regional Chaplain of Carmarthenshire St. John Cymru assisted by the Reverend Phillip Jones.

Launch 9 Lifeboat
The service was conducted in front of the new Boat House

Mr. Dan Clayton-Jones OBE, Prior of St. John Cymru opened proceedings with the national anthems. Mr. Brian Hilling, Deputy Grand Master of the Province of West Wales Freemasons then handed the lifeboat to Mr. Dan Clayton-Jones who accepted it on behalf of St. John Cymru.

Launch 13 Lifeboat
The handing over of the Lifeboat
Launch 11 Lifeboat
The lifeboat is named “The Freemason”

Mr. Dan Clayton-Jones proposed a vote of thanks and handed the Lifeboat into the care of the Ferryside Marine Division. Mr. Anthony Rees, Acting Senior Coxswain, accepted the boat on behalf of Ferryside Marine Division. The proceedings were then closed by Mr. Mark Kessell, Divisional Officer in Charge, who also presented a number of certificates to thank local members of the community for all the invaluable support that they have provided over the years.

Launch 8 Lifeboat
Some of the crew in the new personal protective equipment

The Lifeboat was then launched in front of the the boat house and a brief demonstration of its capabilities was conducted by Anthony Rees (Acting Senior Coxswain), Mike Hackfort (Senior Crew) and Simon Lamble (Crew).

Ferryside Lifeboat Launch Day
The crew demonstrating the new lifeboat’s capabilities.

We should like to thank the Carmarthen Symphonic Wind Band, conducted by Chris Potter, who provided the music on the day.

Launch 17 Lifeboat
The Carmarthen Symphonic Wind Band



Big Swim 2012

Saturday 11th August, one of the few that’s felt like a real summer day, saw the successful completion of another ‘Big Swim’ to Llansteffan and back in support of the Ferryside Lifeboat. This is a serious and challenging open water swim event covering a distance of 2 kilometers and marked out by 3 buoys across the Towy estuary.

Ferryside Big Swim 2012 1

Fifteen hardy souls braved what appeared to be relatively favourable weather, but the calm on the Ferryside shoreline was deceptive with choppy conditions near LLansteffan and the increasing Easterly breeze making the return leg much harder work. Every swimmer looked tired and relieved to make it back to shore. To minimize the impact of the tide, they set out at 1pm, with the first returning in just over twenty-two minutes and all back before 2pm.

Ferryside Big Swim 2012 2

Safety is paramount and there was a great deal of advanced organisation to try to cover all eventualities, and to provide full support for the swimmers at all stages of their swim. A team of kayakers from Gwendraeth Valley Paddlers provided close support and direct communications to the swimmers, with four volunteer boats, each carrying a member of the lifeboat crew and a diver from the Carmarthen Bay Divers as the next line forming a safe corridor there and back for those in the water. Two high-speed boats were stationed to head off and intercept any other craft that might have inadvertently strayed towards the line of swimmers and further members of the lifeboat crew were positioned to keep an overall watchful view and on the beaches.

Ferryside Big Swim 2012 3

Despite all the planning, events can confound and the lifeboat was called out late morning in support of the rescue of seven persons trapped on mud banks at Laugharne, highlighting the very reason why the Big Swim was taking place.

Ferryside Big Swim 2012 4

However the event was still able to start on time, with 14 swimmers taking to the water moments before a cannon fired from the foreshore – the final swimmer turned out to be slightly delayed changing and gamely joined the others four minutes after the start and headed off after them.

Ferryside Big Swim 2012 5

Hoards of onlookers crowded the shoreline near where the swimmers set out and cheered each one as they returned home – the first swimmer back was even greeted in the water by a frequent visitor to the beach in Ferryside, a friendly dog!

Ferryside Big Swim 2012 6

Festivities ensued afterwards in typical Ferryside summer fashion with a barbeque outside the yacht club and two bars staffed inside with the kitchen supplementing the regular bar to help it all run smoothly. The whole event was rounded off with music from Runaway Brian and Jon & Matt and a raffle of donated prizes again in support of the Ferryside lifeboat.

Ferryside Big Swim 2012 7

Thanks to all for their support in making this such a fun, exhausting, charitable and above all, safe, event.

Ferryside Big Swim 2012 9

Ferryside Big Swim 2012 8

Ferryside Lifeboat Official Naming Ceremony

St John Wales’ Ferryside lifeboat will be officially named at a dedication service on Saturday September 1.

The inshore lifeboat will be named ‘The Freemason’ after the Freemasons Grand Council Charity funded the vessel with a £50,000 donation.

St John Wales’ Prior, Dan Clayton-Jones, will officially dedicate the boat at the ceremony talking place at 4.30pm on the slipway of the Ferryside lifeboat station.

Hundreds of people are expected to attend the service including St John Wales Ambassador and Trustee BBC Radio Wales presenter, Roy Noble, the lifeboat’s crew, their families and representatives of the boat’s sponsors.

The lifeboat station, which was officially opened by HRH The Duchess of Gloucester in 2010, has a 15-strong volunteer crew and eight trainees including plumbers, teachers, business consultants and radiographers.

The boat, which can carry a crew of four, is capable of speeds of up to 38 knots and is fitted with the latest Raymarine touch-screen navigational equipment.

Paul Morgans, a volunteer who runs the Ferryside Division, said: “We are enormously grateful for all of the support we have received to fund this vital lifeboat, with special thanks to the Freemasons Grand Charity for their generous donation.

“The volunteers at the station all play a crucial role in making the lifeboat a success and countless lives have already been saved as a result of their actions.”

The ceremony, which will be followed by a water show demonstrating the boat’s lifesaving abilities, will see Brian Hilling, Deputy Master of the Province of West Wales Freemasons hand over the boat to St John Wales.

The crew of the Ferryside Lifeboat hope to see you there today!


June Round Up

Apologies for not updating the website sooner but we’ve had a hectic few weeks.

June has proved to be an exciting month despite the awful weather. We started with the annual Garden Crawl on the 24th June. The weather just about held out for everybody and we we’re really pleased to see so many people turn up for the event. We would like to extend a particular thank you to all the villagers who once again opened up their gardens and made the event so successful. Some regular gardens took a sabbatical this year and had the chance to visit other gardens for once. They will however all be opening up next year for the Garden Crawl’s Silver Jubilee since starting in 1989. The crew are grateful to all who continue to support us throughout the years, so thanks for this year but don’t miss next year! We also need to thank Mr. Tony Bean for his continued efforts that have made this event such a success.

June 30th saw the annual GlastonFferi event held in the Rugby Club. Once again we had a great night of music and it was good to see so many people enjoying themselves. Thank you to all the bands who turned up for a stipend and provided us with an evening of great music. Again we must thank Mr. Oram for his continued efforts in developing the idea and making it a success.

On a more serious note we have been called out several times where people on board either do not have lifejackets or have them on board but are not wearing them. Please wear your lifejackets at all times. They are not going to be of any use if you fall in the water and you’re not actually wearing them.


Ferryside Lifeboat Needs You

It’s nice to see the weather warming up a bit and on the odd day we’ve even seen a bit of sun! As Summer approaches we get a lot busier with events, fundraisers, and those that help others. We also see an increase in the number of times that the lifeboat is called upon.

We would be very grateful if any of you out there could spare some time to help us with our fundraising activities. Anything you can contribute will be gratefully received. Please take a look at the poster below.

We Need You
Ferryside Lifeboat Needs You!

Old Lifeboat “Blundell” For Sale


The now retired;

Ferryside Lifeboat

Purchased 2001.

  • Professional Series Ribcraft 5.85m.
  • Twin 60HP Mariner engines,
  • Low Hours,
  • Maintained to the highest standards,
  • Purchased 2003.
  • All extras expected on a retired Lifeboat.
  • Tubes and Hull in excellent condition (housed inside until retirement).
  • One owner & LOTS of history.
  • Sale to include launch trailer, plus a new & bespoke outside cover.
  • Any inspection welcome.
  • See YouTube, “Ferryside Lifeboat – New vs Old.”

£13,995 O.N.O


e-mail: [email protected]

Call: Anthony, 07891128951.

Ferryside Lifeboat - Blundell
Ferryside Lifeboat - Blundell

May 2012 Roundup

Many Thanks to all those who turned up yesterday for the annual Ferryside Strongman competition, and especially a big thanks to Jacko who once again organised everything and made it such a big success.

As usual the crew put up a contestant. This year we fielded two contestants working together to try and match the genuine strong men. We’re proud to announce that this year the crew finished in a commendable 4th place… out of four contestants.

We would also like to remind everybody that here will be another event in the Ferryside Rugby Club on May 27th where the Olympic Torch will be shown as a part of its tour around the UK.

The next fundraiser for the Ferryside Lifeboat will be the annual Glastonferry event. This year it is being held in both the White Lion and the Rugby Club. The afternoon will kick off in the White Lion with acoustic and folk acts, then onto the main bands in the Rugby Club for the evening’s main bands, this year headlined by Supergene. More details on this to follow.

Don’t forget we will also have our other usual fundraisers, the Garden Crawl, the Big Swim and this year we will also have the official launch of the new lifeboat. More details on all of these to follow soon.

On a more serious note we would again like to remind people to check out the tide times and weather reports (links on the website) before walking around Ferryside and Llansteffan. The tide can come in incredibly quickly and leave you suddenly stranded.