RNLI Congratulated On Saving Lives For 200 Years

Kellie Armstrong MLA congratulates RNLI on 200 Years of Saving Lives

Strangford MLA Kellie Armstrong has congratulated local Portaferry RNLI stations and their colleagues on 200 years of saving lives at sea.

Kellie used her Member’s Statement on Monday in the NI Assembly to acknowledge the role of the RNLI.

She said: “This week we celebrate a monumental milestone in maritime safety and rescue marking the RNLI’s 200th anniversary, two centuries of unwavering commitment to saving lives at sea.

“Founded in 1824 by Sir William Hillary, the RNLI has been the beacon of hope for countless souls in distress, embodying the spirit of courage, selflessness, and resilience.

“For two centuries, its volunteers have braved the tempests, risking their own lives to rescue those in peril on the sea.

Strangford MLA Kellie Armstrong has praised the RNLI for saving lives for 200 years.

“Around Northern Ireland, the RNLI’s presence is deeply felt, with stations dotting the coastline, ready to spring into action at a moment’s notice.

“From Kilkeel to Donaghadee, from Newcastle to Portaferry, these stations stand as pillars of safety, guarding our shores with vigilance and dedication.

“I thank in particular the volunteer crew in Portaferry who give up their private time, leave family dinners, have disturbed sleep to go out, whatever the weather, to answer the call for help.”

Kellie added: “The RNLI’s legacy is not just measured in years or numbers, but in the countless lives saved, the families reunited, and the communities strengthened.

“Their commitment to training, innovation, and collaboration has made our waters safer for all who venture out to sea.”

“As we celebrate this historic occasion, let us not forget the sacrifices made by the brave men and women of the RNLI, nor the support of the communities that stand behind them.

“Together, they form an unbreakable chain of solidarity, ensuring that no call for help goes unanswered.”

A Portaferry RNLI inshore lifeboat in action

Ms Armstrong cautioned, saying “amidst the celebrations, let us also recognise the challenges that lie ahead.

“Climate change, technological advancements, and evolving patterns of maritime activity demand that we remain vigilant and adaptable.

“The RNLI’s 200th anniversary is not just a celebration of the past but a call to action for the future.”

On Monday 4th March, Kellie spoke in the NI Assembly asking all MLAs to reaffirm our commitment to supporting the RNLI and calls on the public to continue support through donations, volunteering, or simply spreading awareness of their invaluable work.

Kellie added: “Together, we can ensure that the next 200 years are marked by even greater achievements in maritime safety and rescue.

“Let us all salute the Royal National Lifeboat Association on this momentous occasion, honouring their legacy of courage, compassion, and service to humanity.

“May they continue to be the guardian angels of the sea for generations to come”.