When the Sir William Arnold left St Peter Port in 1997, her future was uncertain. A great number of Arun’s went overseas to continue their life-saving careers. But a private sale and several owners were what was in store for the Sir William Arnold, including several name changes and who could have foreseen her being used as a private lifeboat again?
A lot of hard work and TLC would be required to get her back to as near as possible how she once looked.
When she was lifted out of the water in October 2019 she was but a shadow of her former self. Thankfully, her wheelhouse was still orange! Barnacles had taken hold of her keel, hull, prop shafts and propellers, heavily reducing her speed and capability for the passage to Amble.
During her operational life the Sir William Arnold had it’s Y class inflatable nestled on a gantry to the rear of the wheel house and this was launched by means of a davit/crane.
Steps led up to the upper steering position and a back rest gave the coxswain some support for the arduous hours he’d spend up on top.
Over the years of private ownership all this had sadly disappeared and without original plans, all we could do was go by old photographs. Again, using the skill and ingenuity of a local craftsman (Russell from Blythe Bespoke Fabrication) he re-created a near replica, and done a fantastic job in the process to be truly proud of.