The station was opened in 1901 after two major incidents , the “Mohegan” in October 1898 when 123 lives were lost and 44 saved, and eight months later the “Paris” grounded off Dolor point when 750 lives were saved. Both of these were passenger vessels.
The “Constance Melanie” was a 12 oared ‘Liverpool’ Class lifeboat and was built at a cost of £906, she was brought to Coverack in January 1901. Her first call out was 12 months later when she saved all 16 memebers of the crew of the barque “Glenbervie”. Coxswain J. Corrin was awarded the RNLI silver medal in 1912 for saving the 44 crew of the “Pindos”.She continued service up to August 1934 having attended to 27 vessels and saved 94 people. She was replaced by a new vessel, which was the “Three Sisters”
The “Three sisters” was a new motor-lifeboat and cost £3,248. She had a top speed of 7.45 knots. She attended 72 vessels over her 18 years of service and saved the lives of some 61 people.
In 1951 coxswain Archie Rowe was awarded the Thanks on Vellum by the R.N.L.I and the Spanish Lifeboat Society’s “Silver Prize Medal for saving 17 crew from the S.S “Mina Cantiquin”. The “Three Sisters” was replaced in 1953.
The “William Taylor of Oldham” was the first 42 foot Watson Class Lifeboat to be built and also the first to be fitted with diesel engines giving a speed of 8.38 knots.
She Cost £29,688.
She served Coverack for 17 years. Called out on 49 occasions she saved 32 people. On the 2nd January 1956 2nd Coxswain Reggie Carey and crew saved 6 crew members of the M.V “Citrine” of Glasgow. For his bravery, Reggie was awarded the R.N.L.I’s Bronze Medal. She was withdrawn from service in 1971 as the newer and faster boats stationed at Falmouth and the Lizard could cover the same area.
A “D” class rubber inshore boat was stationed in the lifeboat house for 6 years and was called out on 19 occasions, saving 8 people mainly from small inshore craft.
The station was closed on March 27th 1980.More detailed information can be obtained from the booklet “Coverack Lifeboats 1901-1980” written by Jeff Morris and only obtainable from the Coverack Branch.
A short Video of the “William Taylor of Oldham”
There is an interesting video featuring the “William Taylor of Oldham” on youtube
Also, watch Coverack Lifeboat Station in 1965 online – BFI Player
player.bfi.org.uk Click here
Ex Coverack Lifeboat Coxswain honoured in “This is your life”
An interesting bit of Coverack RNLI history has recently come to light.Archie Rowe was honoured in the popular series “This is your life” in 1958. A new website featuring all the episodes has been developed and details of Archie Rowes appearance can be seen by clicking HERE