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Prince Philip to visit Caister lifeboat

PUBLISHED: 15:59 04 June 2009 | UPDATED: 14:06 03 July 2010

Proud day: Paul Garrod, lifeboat chairman, is looking forward to Prince Philip's vosot to Caister lifeboat station on June 24.

Proud day: Paul Garrod, lifeboat chairman, is looking forward to Prince Philip's vosot to Caister lifeboat station on June 24.

THE Duke of Edinburgh will meet the crew and supporters of the independent Caister Lifeboat Station to mark its 40th anniversary.

Prince Philip will have a tour of the station during his visit on June 24 and be offered a trip to sea on the offshore lifeboat Bernard Matthews II.

THE Duke of Edinburgh will meet the crew and supporters of the independent Caister Lifeboat Station to mark its 40th anniversary.

Prince Philip will have a tour of the station during his visit on June 24 and be offered a trip to sea on the offshore lifeboat Bernard Matthews II.

Arriving at the station at 10.30am, Prince Philip will be greeted by the lifeboat crew, junior members, directors, the 40th anniversary committee, Great Yarmouth mayor and mayoress Tony and Sara Smith and the high steward Michael Falcon.

From there he will have a tour of the station and meet key supporters - one of those a long-term backer, Bernard Matthews.

Paul Garrod, chairman of Caister lifeboat, said: “The whole lifeboat station and village is thrilled that Prince Philip will be taking time out to visit us to commemorate the 40th anniversary. It will be a very proud day for the lifeboat.”

Between 300 and 400 schoolchildren from local schools are expected to attend and it is hoped community groups will also get involved.

The visit will end with Prince Philip unveiling a plaque commemorating the anniversary and royal visit.

The first lifeboat was stationed at Caister in 1845 but in 1969 the RNLI decided to close its Caister station. At the time, the station had saved the lives of 1,814 people - more than any other station in the county.

However, the people of Caister and its lifeboatmen struck out on their own, setting up the independent Caister Volunteer Lifeboat Service, manned by volunteers and funded by public subscription.

The new plaque will carry the crew's motto, Caister Men Never Turn Back.

The royal visit is the first of two key events celebrating the milestone, with a summer ball on August 8 at the Ocean Room, Gorleston. The 1960s party night will start at 7.30pm for 8pm and tickets are £30 and include a three-course meal and coffee.

Tickets are available from Jason Delf on 07879 851594 or you can download a booking form from CVLS40thball@aol.com.

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