Coastwatch makes volunteer appeal

THE NATIONAL Coastwatch’s Winthorpe Tower has appealed for more volunteers to come forward ahead of the summer season.

The busy tower completed almost 8,000 hours of watch-keeping last summer and reported 28 serious incidents.

But to enable it do provide such an in-depth service for local bathers and tourists it needs the support of an extensive roster of volunteers.

A spokesperson for the group said: “As the summer season will soon be upon us we are looking for reliable members to join our team.

“Any age from 18 to 85 is welcome and no experience is necessary as the volunteers will be trained gradually at their own pace.”

Volunteers with the tower enjoy a number of social activities during the year - making work at the tower both rewarding and a good way to meet new people.

The spokesperson continued: “Our group also enjoys social activities, including 40s’ nights, Christmas dinners and a celebratory meal each year on the Skegness National Coastwatch’s birthday.

“Many of our watchkeepers are retired or semi-retired and enjoy their watchkeeping activies and being able to give something back to the community,” they added.

The tower welcomes visits from the public keen to see what they do - it even actively encourages it.

“The visits are often the deciding factor for someone to join our team.

“Starting off as a trainee they are gradually taught how to take bearings, read charts, recognise ships and distress signals and how to summon the correct emergency help.

“We have a specific training team of six and so are able to teach on a one-to-one basis,” they added.