The family of a Holyhead lifeboat crew volunteer who died in a motorbike accident say they are delighted a fundraising lifeboat appeal to pay for a new vessel bearing his name has reached its target.
Volunteers and supporters of Holyhead and Barmouth RNLI lifeboat stations have been working tirelessly over the past 12 months to raise funds and today (Monday 5 June) they have announced their £48,000 lifeboat appeal target has been met. The money will fund a new D-class inshore lifeboat, which will be stationed at Barmouth RNLI. It will be named Craig Steadman in memory of dedicated Holyhead lifeboatman Craig, who died after the bike he was riding collided with another vehicle on the A55 near Llanfairpwll in August 2015.
Craig’s mother Sharon Steadman said: ‘It is fantastic to hear that the fundraising target has been met and my thanks goes to everyone who has contributed to the appeal. Craig loved being on the lifeboat crew and it is great to know his memory will live on helping save lives at sea – a cause Craig was dedicated to.
‘We are looking forward to seeing the lifeboat in pride of place in Barmouth later this year going out to sea and saving lives.
Both Holyhead and Barmouth lifeboat stations were tasked with raising £24,000 towards the appeal. They received huge support from Craig’s family, who undertook a number of fundraising challenges, RNLI fundraising branches from as far afield as the West Midlands and Black Country and the general public in both communities.
The appeal was kick-started last year by Craig’s brother Richard, who presented £750 to the RNLI raised from the northern border lodge 10537 (RAOB), TGV, Tabuk, Saudi Arabia. Since then he and other family members have taken on a range of challenges and donated thousands of pounds more towards the appeal.
Other fundraising events from family, friends and RNLI volunteers and supporters from Barmouth and Holyhead RNLI lifeboat stations included skydives, endurance swims, New Year’s day dips and countless other events and donations.
Tony Price, Holyhead RNLI Coxswain, said: ‘We have been overwhelmed by the level of support that’s been shown to us throughout the appeal by our local communities. This appeal has been close to the hearts of all of us here at Holyhead RNLI and everyone connected to the appeal has done us proud and done Craig proud.
‘Whilst the appeal for the boat has reached its target, donations which will help the RNLI run and maintain the boat are most welcome. We know that there are people in the community who would like to support the RNLI in Craig’s memory and helping to fund the maintenance of, and fuel for the lifeboat is a fantastic way of helping the RNLI at this time.’
Peter Davies, Barmouth RNLI Coxswain, said: ‘Having a lifeboat bearing Craig’s name here at Barmouth RNLI will be a huge honour for everyone at the lifeboat station and we are all delighted the appeal has reached its target.’
The D-class lifeboat is the workhorse of the RNLI fleet. It is inflatable, robust and highly manoeuvrable, capable of operating much closer to the shore than the all-weather lifeboats. It is especially suited to surf, shallow water and confined locations, often close to cliffs, among rocks or caves. It measures five-metres in length and can carry three crew members on board. It has an endurance of three hours at sea, at its maximum speed of 25 knots.
Last year Barmouth RNLI’s current D-class lifeboat launched 40 times.
Photo credit: Holyhead RNLI