Robin belongs to: Cullercoats RNLI
Robin was born in Whitley Bay and grew up in Tynemouth. Before joining the RNLI Robin was a member of the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade for 20 years.
Robin was interviewed by Kylea Little on 22 January 2006. The interview took place at Cullercoats RNLI lifeboat station and lasted 39 minutes and 37 seconds.
The Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade
"I started there, I think itís 28 years ago now and as I mentioned, I went down there as a member of, well, thinking I was joining the lifeboat, basically"
I started there, I think itís 28 years ago now and as I mentioned, I went down there as a member of, well, thinking I was joining the lifeboat, basically. Then got totally knocked down by, there was this breeches buoy they were doing, cliff work and things like this, so I thought, ďI could do this,Ē and helping people without getting your feet wet. The building was absolutely amazing and that sort of took me immediately- the smells and everything, and maybe the conditions of things, the old photographs- I am interested in local history and the whole sort of attitude of the brigade, I liked the guys that were down there- some really nice guys.
It was a Victorian organisation with a Victorian attitude, and you started on the bottom, basically, you really started on the bottom, and I became a crewman in the whip section and thoroughly enjoyed it. I was always getting it wrong, was always getting into trouble, a young lad with his mates. We would wind people up but we would have a good time and one of the things later on within the history of the brigade- we had to bring the brigade into the twentieth century first of all, and thatís before we attempted to bring it close to the twenty-first century. And this was a lot of years later when the young bucks find out, that, you know, all of a sudden theyíre the middle aged ones down there. And is the place just going to fade away or are they going to start diversifying, promoting themselves.
The coastguard, being a government organisation, werenít always the best people to deal with. Iíll be extremely diplomatic in what Iíll say to you because my wife was a part time coastguard, but because of that, we did find certain things out that we had, like, which allowed us to take the brigade a little bit further and we ended up with this, with an organisation which now, if you look at it, is so busy, itís as busy as any lifeboat station, if not busier, theyíre the eyes and ears of the coastguard.
Theyíll probably never ever use a breeches buoy outfit, or gear again. But that breeches buoy gear has taught them how to, teaches all of these guys how to work as a team, and it teaches them something about the discipline, because if you donít follow the procedures, and if you donít work as a team, not one individual will ever be able to operate that on his own. So itís a great team building bit of kit, as well as, for the traditionalists, itís a tremendous way of showing them something that doesnít exist anywhere else in the United Kingdom. Nobody else has got an anchor breeches buoy team apart from the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade.
Robin has 7 memories in the memorynet:
Robin's memories with a The North East theme:
Robin's other memories: