LYME Regis honoured its lifeboat crew and seafaring organisations in a poignant and moving ceremony on Sunday.
The annual Blessing of the Boats service was held outside the lifeboat station on the Cobb, to remember all those lost at sea and pray for good fortune for those who work, volunteer or enjoy leisure activities on the water.
The interdenominational service was led by the Reverend Rosemary Bragg of St Michael’s Parish Church with prayers from the Revered Eric Holstock of Lyme Regis Baptist Church.
A large crowd gathered as volunteer members of the lifeboat crew lined the slipway, along with the new Mayor of Lyme Regis, Councillor Brian Larcombe; mayoress Wendy Larcombe; deputy mayor Councillor Jeff Scowen; Dorset councillor Daryl Turner; members of the Royal British Legion and Lyme’s seafaring organisations, including the sailing club and sea school, gig club and power boat club.
Hymns were accompanied by Lyme Regis Town Band and musical entertainment also came from the Harbour Voices choir.
The mayor read the lesson and Lorcan Finn of Lyme Regis Sailing Club read a poem.
The blessing itself was carried out by the Reverend Bragg, who said how proud Lyme was of its lifeboat crew and maritime heritage.
Floral wreaths were then passed down the slipway by members of the seafaring organisations and Royal British Legion, and handed to members of the lifeboat crew who placed them on the water’s edge for a short silence, before taking them out to sea on the lifeboat, accompanied by one of the town’s gigs.
Blessing of the Boats this year coincided with an open day at the lifeboat station, where crew members and supporting volunteers welcomed an estimated 250 visitors, including many children.