The winners of the Learning Community Art Competition had a really thought provoking day out in Mousehole and Newlyn in late November.
Tutor groups have been focussing on their local communities and learning all about Cornwall and the sea. Part of this has included learning about the RNLI Penlee lifeboat disaster which happened 19/12/1981, when lifeboat ‘Solomon Browne’ went to the rescue of ‘Union Star’ in heavy seas. Tragically both vessels were lost, with all hands; in all 16 people including all 8 volunteer lifeboat crew. This sad story has really captured our student’s imaginations and we were all keen to visit a working RNLI station and the sites where these events unfolded.
For our day out, we first visited the new RNLI lifeboat station in Newlyn and enjoyed a really interesting tour of the kit room, crew room, museum and lifeboat with Coxswain Patch and mechanic Tony.
Whilst on our tour of the Lifeboat station, we met Roy. Roy was the 9th crew member, of ‘Solomon Browne’, to check in on the tragic night of 19th December 1981 and therefore didn’t go to sea as the lifeboat’s capacity was 8 crew. Roy shared his memories of his brave friends who all lost their lives trying to save the crew of Union Star, he also took us to the old lifeboat station, from where Solomon Browne was launched. This was an amazing experience for us and we are really grateful to Roy, Patch and Tony for inspiring our students with their bravery and for keeping our coast safe for us to enjoy. We finished the day leaving our own tributes on the memorial to the crew of the Solomon Browne.