Listed status for pub named in memory of nine lifeboatmen

PUBLISHED: 18:00 17 May 2018 | UPDATED: 15:14 18 May 2018

The Never Turn Back pub in Caister has been given listed status.
Picture: Anthony Carroll

The Never Turn Back pub in Caister has been given listed status. Picture: Anthony Carroll


It is a coastal village pub that is named in memory of nine brave lifeboatmen killed on a rescue mission in 1901.

And now the Never Turn Back has further cemented its place in Caister by gaining listed status by the Department for Digital, Culture, media and Sport on the advice of Historic England.

The pub on Manor Road was named as a tribute to the crew of the Beauchamp who perished while trying to save a fishing smack that appeared in distress in stormy weather.

At an inquest into the deaths, assistant coxswain James Haylett famously said the crew would never give up on a stricken vessel, with his comments then being taken up nationally by the press and public - “Caister men never turn back”.

The Never Turn Back pub opened in 1957 and was designed by A W Ecclestone and has now gained grade II-listed status by English Heritage.

In giving the listing status, Historic England said it is of historic interest “for the close historic association as a memorial to the Caister lifeboat tragedy, which gained national attention and interest and is still remembered both locally and by the RNLI”.

The building is also described as a “comparatively early post-war pub, designed the year after building restrictions were lifted in 1954”.

The listing report also says the building is of architectural interest as an interesting example of a pub built to a flexible 
plan using distinctive and effective use of form, materials and detailing.

A W Ecclestone is also described as a well-known architect of public houses and related buildings, who developed a distinctive style and whose work is already represented on the list.

The Beauchamp had been in service for nine years when disaster struck in November 14, 1901.

An hour after launching it was found capsized on the beach and only three of the crew of 12 were saved.

Following the disaster Mr Haylett was awarded the RNLI gold medal for his actions in rescuing the three crew.

The pub was officially opened by Patrick Howarth, publicity secretary of the RNLI, in July 1957, coinciding with the centenary of the establishment of the lifeboat crew at Caister.

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