Portaferry Lifeboat Station - Join us
RNLI Lifeboat House, The Strand, Portaferry, Co Down, Northern Ireland



1. Become a Crew-member
2. Become a Shore Crew Member
3. Become a Sea Safety Adviser
4. Become a Education Volunteer
5. Become a Fundraiser
6. Become a Member of the RNLI
7. Include... the RNLI in your will or donate a gift 'in memorium' of a loved-one
8. Visit the RNLI On-Line Shop here

... or simply donate to the RNLI;

Locally, through our Portaferry & District Lifeboat Guild (contact our treasurer, Mike Miall, at guild@PortaferryLifeboat.com)

... or directly to the RNLI by clicking this button

1. Become a LIFEBOAT C

We are often looking for new crew members. If you live or work in the Portaferry area and think that you would like to join us as a crew member then please read on.

To become a volunteer crew-member at Portaferry Lifeboat Station, or any other RNLI Lifeboat Station, you must be at least 17 years of age, medically fit, have good eyesight and live or work reasonably close to a lifeboat station. (You must have your parent's or guardian's permission if you are aged 17)

Crew-members don't have to have a maritime background. We have individuals from all walks of life on our crew. Some of our best and most faithful crew-members had no nautical background but became highly proficient through the professional training that the RNLI provides.

Above all, you will need to be 110% committed to being able to respond at a moment's notice, no matter what you are doing, provided you are within reasonable travelling time to the Station. In return we can offer you one of the most exciting and fulfilling voluntary jobs available.

For health & safety reasons the RNLI requires crew-members at 'Atlantic 85' lifeboat stations such as ours to consider retirement from sea-going service at 55 years of age. Retirement at 'All Weather Lifeboat' stations is 65.  However, these advisory retirement ages can be extended provided the crew member continues to meet the normal medical and physical requirments.

Retired crew-members have a wealth of experience and frequently join our shore-based team that provides support through crew training or the launch & recovery/mooring of the lifeboat, etc.  Retired crew members are often appointed as a station's 'Lifeboat Operations Manager' or as a 'Deputy Launching Authority'.  Such positions currently have a retirement age of seventy.

If you are interested in finding out about becoming a crew-member at our station please e-mail us with your contact information at newcrew@PortaferryLifeboat.com

If you are interested in becoming a crew-member at another lifeboat station you should contact the Lifeboat Operations Manager or any known crew-member at that lifeboat station or you can e-mail the RNLI at vacancies@rnli.org.uk specifying your interest in becoming a crew-member.

New lifeboat crew members initially serve a probationary period of one year.

For further information click here


To become a volunteer Shore Crew member at Portaferry Station, or any other RNLI Lifeboat Station, you must be at least 17 years of age and usually live or work reasonably close to a lifeboat station.

Shore Crew provide many important and vital services for the lifeboat station but their primary task is to ensure a fast and safe launch and recovery of the lifeboat when there is a call for assistance.  

Just like our sea-going crew-members, they need to be 110% committed to being able to respond at a moment's notice.

If you are interested in finding out about becoming a Shore-Helper at our station please e-mail us with your contact information at shorehelper@PortaferryLifeboat.com



The RNLI provides advice to boat owners, yacht clubs and others through voluntary RNLI Sea Safety Advisers.

To become a Sea Safety adviser you must be a good communicator and be competent in at least one area of sailing/boating.

The RNLI is recruiting volunteers with wide nautical experience and a relevant sailing/boating/winsurfing qualification. This could be a qualification obtained from the RYA, the RNLI or another equivalent organisation.

RNLI Sea Safety Advisers must be able to pass on advice relating to safety at sea to a boat owners in a friendly and sensitive manner. They must be willing to carry out vessel and/or lifejacket inspections at the owner's convenience at either their home or where their craft is berthed/moored. Sea Safety inspections normally take about an hour to complete.

If you would like further information please click here



Help stop young people getting into trouble at sea or on the beach and our safety messages out to those at risk.

If you have a talent of talking to young people, are available during the day and willing to undergo the usual checks please click here for further information.

5. Become a FUNDRAISER

It costs about £40,000 every day to provide the RNLI life saving services throughout the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland.

All of this life-saving work is funded entirely through voluntary donations and legacies.

One of the ways to encourage the public to donate to the RNLI is through joining a RNLI lifeboat Branch or Guild.

Portaferry & District Lifeboat Guild is just one of such guilds/branches that raises thousands of £'s each year for the RNLI.

Membership of Portaferry & District Lifeboat Guild is open to adults of all ages and gender. The Guild meets every two/three months in the Lifeboat Station to plan or organise future fund raising events.

Fund raising for the RNLI is a team effort and you will not be expected to work on your own. For many, helping to raise funds for the RNLI is in itself rewarding and also provides an opportunity to meet and socialise with a wide variety of people from the local community and beyond.

If you would like to attend one of our Guild meetings to learn more about our fund raising efforts, or if you only require information about our guild, please contact us with your request at guild@PortaferryLifeboat.com

Alternatively, if you would like to join a guild/branch in your area please click here for further information.



There are various ways in which you or your family can support the RNLI by becoming a member of the RNLI. There are several categories of membership.

a. become a 'Governor' or 'Life Governor' of the RNLI
b. become an 'Offshore' member
c. become a 'Shoreline' member
d. enrol your children or grandchildren as 'Storm Force' members. For more info click here
e. make a regular donation from your salary
f. If your are a tax-payer, ensure that an income tax refund can be claimed by the RNLI on all of your donations.

Check out all of the membership options by visiting


7. Include the RNLI in your will or give a gift in memorium of a loved one.

Six out of every ten lifeboat launches are only possible thanks to legacies.

The RNLI volunteer crews expect no reward for the risks they take and the sacrifices they make. For their safety, the RNLI needs to ensure that they have up-to-date lifeboats and equipment, both today and in the future.

If you think you could help with including the RNLI in your legacy please send for the RNLI's new free booklet and video. These useful guides will give you helpful information about how to make or update your 'will' as well as how best to leave a legacy to the RNLI.

Alternatively, you my wish to consider a gift 'in memorium' of a loved one.

For further information please click here

Last update: 08/06/2020


Current RNLI Fundraising Events - UK & Ireland | Today's Cartoon

Back to top