Dedicated Bridlington RNLI crew member steps down after 20 years of life-saving

A Yorkshire Coast volunteer who has dedicated more than 20 years to saving lives at sea is stepping down from his role.

By Carl Gavaghan, Local Democracy Reporting Service
Monday, 7th December 2020, 10:00 am

Bridlington RNLI crew member Ad Trower started volunteering in 1998 following a chance encounter.

He was walking to the fire station to see if there was any work available when he met Joe Jagger - a lifeboat crew member - who introduced him to the rest of the crew and helped him begin his lifesaving work.

"I wasn’t really interested in what my friends were doing at the time, so I decided to knock on the door of the fire station to see if there was any work going," said Ad.

Ad Trower pictured with the International Flood Rescue Team in the USA.

"I was a little downcast when they told me that there wasn’t but after meeting Joe that day I decided I wanted to join the lifeboat crew."

Since that fateful day, he has taken part in countless exercises, rescues and operations not just off the Yorkshire Coast but nationally and internationally as part of his work with the RNLI Flood Rescue Team.

He was part of the Flood Rescue Team for more than 15 years.

The branch is deployed to flood-hit areas to provide lifesaving assistance.

Ad reached the level of Team Leader and Boat Leader, and even travelled to North Carolina in America alongside the International Flood Rescue Team.

Ad has also been the Senior Helm for Bridlington inshore lifeboat for over nine years and in 2006 received The Thanks Of The Institution Inscribed in Vellum from the RNLI.

The vellum is an award given to volunteer crew members for notable acts and Ad received his for his efforts in pulling a casualty from the water off Bridlington’s North Promenade in horrendous conditions.

After countless call-outs resulting in missed Sunday lunches, disrupted birthday parties and even attending shouts on Christmas Day, Ad has decided to stand down from his role in the RNLI.

"I feel like this is the right time for me," he said.

"I want to spend more time with my wife and young boy but I’m looking forward to seeing some of the younger volunteers at the station follow in my footsteps."

Ad’s final exercise on the inshore lifeboat was on Sunday morning and Bridlington Lifeboat Chairman Dave Garnett offered his thanks on behalf of the station.

"It’s always sad to see a senior crew member like Ad leave us but his commitment and contribution to the community of Bridlington is hugely appreciated and we hope that he enjoys some well-earned time with his young family."

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