Lifeboat heroes honoured by charity for daring night rescue in stormy sea

Anstruther lifeboat was used in the dramatic rescue
Anstruther lifeboat was used in the dramatic rescue
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Three volunteer lifeboat crew members have been recognised for the part in saving the lives of two people from a motorboat that had got into trouble in stormy conditions.

Anstruther inshore lifeboat Helmsman Barry Gourlay, 30, is to be awarded the RNLI Bronze Medal for Gallantry – one of the charity’s highest accolades – for his courage and boat handling skills in extremely difficult conditions.

His fellow volunteer crew members Rebecca Jewell, 30, and Euan Hoggan, 22, will be presented with the “Thanks of the Institution” award for their part in the rescue.

The rescue took place just after 1am on 1 August this year, amidst rocks, breaking waves and total darkness. The motorboat, Princess, had suffered steering problems and had been driven on to rocks by strong winds and a large swell at Crail, ten miles south east of St Andrews, Fife.

Despite the challenging conditions, Helmsman Gourlay and his two lifeboat crew members managed to pluck the two-man crew from their stricken vessel minutes before it was washed further on to the shore and out of reach of the lifeboat.

Mr Gourlay said: “The RNLI trains volunteers to handle all types of life-saving situations and we were putting into practice what we learnt. It is a great honour to receive the bronze medal. However, this also recognises all the efforts of everyone else at the station involved in the rescue – we also had a shore crew and an all-weather lifeboat crew working that night.”