RNLI denies changes to station are down to concerns over costs

Scene Setter pictures of the work taking place on the new RNLI Station on Scarborough Sea front'PA1524-13u
Scene Setter pictures of the work taking place on the new RNLI Station on Scarborough Sea front'PA1524-13u

The RNLI has denied it has made changes to the design of Scarborough’s lifeboat station in order to cut costs.

The denial came after a Scarborough Councillor raised concerns after the charity resubmitted plans for the £3 million station to the council’s planning committee.

Among the changes approved were a more standard shaped roof, and some proposed stonework will now be stone effect tiling.

Cllr Vanda Inman told her fellow Councillors: “I am very concerned as to why the RNLI appear to be trying to cut costs now. Can they not afford what they originally planned?

“They shouldn’t be allowed to change it ad hoc in order to save a few quid.”

She added: “I don’t think a stone look-alike is appropriate when a stone and brick design was meant to be used.

“If it is a cost cutting exercise maybe they should take the carpet out of the operations room, and the bar as well, and really focus on getting this right.”

Planning officer Marcus Whitmore added: “Originally the RNLI wanted more wide-ranging changes.

“But we, as officers, felt they were not appropriate.”

The RNLI also asked the council if it would be open to the charity putting solar panels on the roof but was told that ‘at this time’ they would look out of place on the seafront.

However, a spokesman for the RNLI denied the changes were made for financial reasons.

He said: “The RNLI made the application to change some of the building materials for Scarborough lifeboat station to allow for enhanced safety and greater ease of construction. “The inclusion of materials such as Trespa panelling was added to facilitate a more effective building process and the charity has wide experience of working with this product.

“As the RNLI will be responsible for maintaining the lifeboat station following its construction, some of the materials were reviewed to check that they offered maximum sustainability and in turn ensured that the charity was making the best possible use of its supporters’ valuable donations.”