Tom follows in father’s footsteps to helm lifeboat

RNLI assessor Carl Beardmore (left) congratulates Lyme Regis lifeboat crew member Tom Crabbe

AN electrician from Uplyme achieved his ambition of following in his father’s footsteps to become a helm commanding the Lyme Regis lifeboat this week. 

Tom Crabbe, aged 26, from Uplyme, passed the final test to become a volunteer helm during a day of theory and 90 minutes at sea under the close scrutiny of an RNLI assessor.

The was examined by Carl Beardmore, a coxswain with the RNLI at Falmouth. At the end of the day’s tests he said: “Tom satisfied me that he is very safe, knowledgable, and will make an excellent helm for the Lyme Regis lifeboat station.”

Tom, a father of two and a crew member for six years, is now the seventh helm at Lyme Regis lifeboat station, one of the most important and responsible roles.

As helm he commands the lifeboat and is responsible for the welfare and safety of other crew members and the vessel itself.

Said Tom: “I am absolutely delighted to have made the grade as a helm, and proud to follow my dad.”

Tom’s father Rob retired from the lifeboat crew after 20 years’ service and was also a helm.

Lifeboat operations manager Nick Marks commented: “I congratulate Tom. His operational pass-out as a helm is testament to his dedication as one of our much-valued volunteers.”

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