Independent Lifeboats discussed in Parliament

Westminster Hall debate held in Parliament on the contribution of lifeboats to search and rescue.

On Tuesday 10th January, a parliamentary debate was held to give Members of Parliament the opportunity to highlight the important contribution of independent lifeboats and their RNLI counterparts.

MPs including NILA’s Honorary President, Anthony Mangnall MP, paid tribute to the independent lifeboats that operate on coastal and inland waters across the country.

He also spoke at length about NILA, thanking the charity’s trustees for their hard work.

Fellow Members of Parliament and the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport, Richard Holden MP, praised Mr Mangnall for his perseverance and ongoing hard work to support independent lifeboats and establish NILA.

Mr Mangnall’s requests of the Department for Transport included asking for official recognition of NILA, confirmation that independent lifeboats would be able to engage with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency as it reviews the Rescue Boat Code which lifeboats must abide by, support for a national campaign to raise public awareness, and the reintroduction of the Rescue Boat Grant Fund.

Mr Holden confirmed the Department for Transport’s endorsement for NILA, and asked the House to join him in thanking independent lifeboats for their continued support for search and rescue services across the length and breadth of the UK.

Anthony Mangnall, MP for Totnes and South Devon, said:

“As Founder and Honorary President of National Independent Lifeboat Association (NILA), I was particularly pleased to be able to highlight the lifesaving work of independent lifeboats. I am pleased that the Department for Transport welcomes the new organisation and the Minister acknowledged the valuable contribution of its members.

We are all very lucky to have these charitable organisations operating in our coastal communities and along inland waters. Thanks to all the independent lifeboat volunteers around the country for your hard work and dedication.”