New RNLI Lifeboat Station Is Towed Into Position Below Tower Bridge

Will Noble
By Will Noble Last edited 14 months ago

Last Updated 31 March 2023

New RNLI Lifeboat Station Is Towed Into Position Below Tower Bridge
The new station is towed beneath Tower Bridge. Image: Hallmark Media Group.

You may've read our article from 2022: The UK's Busiest Lifeboat Station Is Hiding In Plain Sight By Waterloo Bridge.

Despite its position on the Victoria Embankment, that lifeboat station was called Tower Station — due to the fact it was originally located beneath Tower Bridge.

Now, a new Tower Station building has been towed into position under Tower Bridge, meaning that from the end of April 2023, the brave crew will launch their missions from here.

The old Lifeboat Pier in its original guise as the Thames Police Station. Image: RNLI.

Until January 2023, they were still using a pontoon station that was so old, parts of it were Victorian; originally the Thames Police Station, it was becoming increasingly unfit for purpose.

In Tower Station's time, the crew has launched 734 times — and saved 21 lives (the latter figure is probably much higher in reality, but there are strict rules on what constitutes saving a life, as we found out).

The new station being floated down the Thames to its iconic new home. Image: Hallmark Media Group.

Since January, the crew has been operating from the HMS president, the Royal Naval Reserve's London training facility.

A group of four lifeboat crew in yellow emergency clothes stand on a jetty beneath the concrete span of Waterloo Bridge. They look all heroic, like something out of a Netflix rescue drama, some proper good posing. But they are genuinely heroic
We visited the Tower Station crew in 2022.

The new station features new additions for the crew, including a more private space for casualty care, out of public view.

Tower Lifeboat Station Manager Kevin Maynard said: "We are looking forward to our new much needed facilities which will mean we can continue the service we are known for, for many years to come.

"The crew are so excited to see their new station arrive and excited to continue our life saving work from this new modern base."

The old station isn't being put out to pasture yet; it's going to be used by Thames Marine Services as an electrical charging facility.

The RNLI relies almost entirely on donations.