Irish Lifeboats

The definitive guide to the Irish lifeboat service

B Class (Atlantic 21) Lifeboats

Bangor’s old Atlantic 21 class boat “Youth of Ulster” about to depart from the harbour. Photo Albert Bridge
The Atlantic 21 is part of the B-class of lifeboats that served the shores of the United Kingdom and Ireland as part of the RNLI inshore fleet. The Atlantic 21 was the first generation Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB), originated at and by Atlantic College in South Wales, the birth place of the RIB after which the craft is so named. The school was also one of nine locations where the RNLI first established lifeboat stations using smaller inshore watercraft. Atlantic College Lifeboat Station was commissioned by the RNLI in 1963 and decommissioned in 2013.

All Atlantic 21 class lifeboats have retired from RNLI service with last one standing down from service in 2009.

The Atlantic 21 can be launched from a davit, trolley or floating boathouse depending on the location of the station and the available facilities.


The boat carries a variety of equipment which includes two VHF radios, First Aid Kit & oxygen, GPS navigation system, night vision equipment, self-righting system, anchor and various warps, toolkit, towing system, illuminating and distress pyrotechnics, spotlight, torches.


The rollbar assembly installed above the engines contains a self-righting bag which is operated by a member of the crew activating a gas bottle.

Atlantic 21 Facts

In Service: 1970 to 2007

Length: 7.21m

Width: 2.49m

Load: 

Launch Type: Carriage, davit or floating boathouse

Fuel Capacity: 

Crew: 3

Range: 3 Hours

Engines: 2 x 70hp 2 stroke outboard engines

Note: Table below is a work in progress. Any further information will be welcomed.
Number
Name
Service History
Notes
B-500
 
Trials at various locations 1970 to 1977
(1)
B-501
 
 Relief 1970 to 1977
 
B-502
 
Trials 1972 to 1973
 
B-503
 
Hartlepool 1972 to 1975
 
B-504
Blue Peter I 
Littlehampton 1972 to 1973
 
B-505
Major Osman Gabriel
Queensferry 1972 to 1975
Relief 1975 to 1979 
Silloth 1979 to 1980 
Atlantic College 1980 to 1982
B-506
West Mersea 1972 to 1976
Relief 1976 to 1978 
Staithes and Runswick 1978 to ????
 
B-507
Griende
Built for KNRM 1972 to 2005
 
B-508
 
Atlantic College 1973 to 1980
 
B-509
 
New Brighton 1973 to 1981
Relief 1981 to 1985
 
B-510 
Tuimelaar
Built for KNRM 1973
B-511
Co-Operative No. 1
Largs 1973 to 1975
Hayling Island 1975 to 1979 
Newbiggin 1981 1982
Hunstanton 1982
Relief 1982 to 1985 
Clacton-on-Sea 1985 to 1989 
Relief  1985 to 1997
 
B-512
U.S. Navy League 
Lyme Regis 1973 to 1980 
Relief  1980 to 1990 
Walmer 1990 to 1992
Relief 1992 to 1994
Bundoran  1994 to 1995 
Relief 1995 to 1997 
Weymouth  1997 to 1998 
Clifden 1998
Relief 1998 to 1999
Sligo Bay 1998 to 2001 
Publicity Fleet 2001
 (2)
B-513
William McCunn
Largs 1973 to 1980
Relief 1980 to 1988
Bangor 1988 to 1990
Relief 1990 to 1997
 
B-514
Guide Friendship 1
Aberdovey 1974 to 1983
Relief 1983 to 1984 
Clacton-on-Sea 1984 to 1985 
Redcar 1986
Relief 1986 to 1991
Cullercoats 1991 to 1992
Relief 1992 to 2000
(3)
B-515
V E Webber
Beaumaris 1976 to 1985
Relief 1985 to 1992
Port Erin 1992 to 1993
Flamborough 1993 to 1994
Relief 1994 to 1996
Penarth 1996
Relief 1996 to 2000
(3)
B-516
Whitstable Branch
Whitstable 1974 to 1983 
Relief 1983 to 1990
 
B-517 
Blue Peter I
Littlehampton 1973 to 1974
 
B-518
Sole Bay
Southwold 1973 to 1985 
Relief 1985 to 1987 
Falmouth 1987 to 1988
Relief 1988 to 1990
 
B-519
Surrey Forester
Lymington 1973 to 1986 
Relief 1986 to 1990
 
B-520
Wildenrath Wizzer
Appledore 1974 to 1986
Redcar 1986 to 1990
Relief 1990 to 1993
Publicity 1993 to 2005
B-521
Mary Livingstone
Queensferry 1975 to 1981
Relief 1981 to 1994 
 
B-522
Dolfijn
Built for KNRM 1974
 
B-523
 
Littlehampton 1974 to 1985
Relief 1985 to 1995. 
ILC 1995 to 1998
 
B-524
 
Built for KNRM 1974
 
B-525
Spix's Macaw
Relief 1974 to 1979
Hayling Island 1979 to 1980
Relief 1980 to 1988
Kircudbright 1988 to 1991
Relief 1991 to 2001
Enniskillen (Upper) 2001 to 2004
 
B-526
 
Relief 1974 to 1978
Harwich 1978 to 1987 
Relief 1987 to 1995
Hayling Island 1995 to 1997 
Clacton-on-Sea 1997 to 1998 
Relief 1998 to 2002 
Training 2002 to 2009
(4)
B-527
Percy Garon (Civil Service)
Southend-on-Sea 1976 to 1986
Relief 1986 to 1998
(5)
B-528
 
Relief 1975 to 1976
Blackpool 1976 to 1978
Relief 1978 to 2000
 
B-529

Alexander Duckham

West Mersea 1976 to 1987
Mudeford 1988 to 1990 
Falmouth 1991 to 1993 
Relief 1993 to 2000
 
B-530
Guide Friendship II
Eastney 1975 to 1981
Relief 1981 to 1985 
Macduff 1985 to 1989 
Relief 1989 to 1993
B-531
Foresters
Great Yarmouth and Gorleston 1975 to 1988
Relief 1988 to 2002
 
B-532
Guide Friendship III
Hartlepool 1976 1986 
Relief 1986 to 1998
(5)
B-533
 
Littlestone-on-Sea 1976 to 1988
Relief 1988 to 1990 
Teignmouth 1990 to 1991 
Relief 1991 to 1992
Kilkeel 1992 to 1993 
Relief 1993 to 1998

 
B-534
 
 
 
B-535
R.A.O.B.
Hartlepool 1975 to 1976
Berwick-upon-Tweed 1976 to 1992
Relief 1992 to 1995
Kyle of Lochalsh 1995 to 1997
(B)
B-536
 
 
Peel 1976 to 1989
Relief 1989 to 1992
Sheringham 1992 to 1994
Relief 1994 to 1999
 
B-537
 
Relief 1976 to 1978 
Blackpool 1978 to 1979 
Relief 1979 to 1983 
Youghal 1983 to 1984 
Relief 1984 to 1986 
St. Abbs 1986 to 1988  
Relief 1988 to 1999
 
B-538
Lord Brotherton
Staithes and Runswick 1978 to 1989 
Relief 1989 to 1990
 
B-539
Lions International District 105 SE
Brighton 1978 to 1989
Relief 1989 to 1990 
St. Catherine 1990 to 1991 
Relief 1991 to 1998

 
B-540
Wolverhampton
Abersoch 1978 to 1990
Relief 1990 to 2000
(3)
B-541
Elizabeth Bestwick
Relief 1976 to 1988
Falmouth 1988 to 1991
Berwick-Upon-Tweed 1992 to 1993
Falmouth 1993 to 1994 
Hayling Island 1994 to 1995 
Weymouth 1995 to 1996
Relief 1996 to 1997
 
B-542
William Yeo
Relief 1976 to 1987
ILC 1987 to 2003
 
B-543
Round Table
Helensburgh 1978 to 1990
Relief 1990 to 1996
Weymouth 1996 to 1997
Skerries 1997 to 1998
Clovelly 1998 to 1999 
Relief 1999 to 2001
 
B-544
Catherine Plumbley
Minehead 1976 to 1994
Relief 1994 to 1998  
(3)
B-545 
Amelia Gregory Armstrong
Silloth 1980 to 1995
Relief  1995 to 1998
 
B-546 
Forester Benevolence
Lyme Regis 1980 to 1997
Relief 1997 to 1998
 
B-547
Forester Liberty
Largs 1980 to 1998
(3)
B-548
Aldershot
Hayling Island 1980 to 1994
Poole 1994 to 1995
Relief 1995 to 1998
(5)
B-549
Blenwatch
New Brighton 1981 to 1996
Tiggnabruich 1996 to 1998 
Relief 1998 to 2001
Enniskillen (Lower) 2001to 2003
(3)
B-550
City of Portsmouth  
Portsmouth 1981 to 1996 
Relief 1996 to 1998
(5)
B-551
Constance Macnay
Queensferry 1981 to 1997
Relief 1997 to 1998
Clifden 1998 to 1999
(5)  
B-552
Bruinvis
Built for KNRM 1981
 
B-553
Kirklees
Newbiggin 1982 to 1998
Helvic Head 1998 to 1999
Relief 1999 to 2000
(6)
B-554 
American Ambassador
Atlantic College 1982 to 2000 
Relief 2000 to 2001
 
B-555 
Long Life I
Relief 1982 to 1997
 
B-556 
Spirit of America
Hunstanton 1982 to 1998
Relief 1998 to 1999
(5)
B-557
Weston Centenery
Weston-Super-Mare 1983 to 2001
(5)  
B-558
Ramsgate Enterprise
Ramsgate 1984 to 2000
Relief 2000 to 2001
(7)
B-559
Long Life III
Aberdovey 1983 to 1999
Relief 1999 to 2001
(8)
B-560
British Diver
Whitstable 1984 to 2000
 
B-561
Marjorie Turner
Youghal 1984 to 2002
(5)
B-562
The Quiver
Southwold 1985 to 1998
Relief 1998 to 2001
(5)
B-563
Blue Peter II
Beaumaris 1985 to 2000 
Relief 2000 to 2002
(5)  
B-564
Blue Peter I
Littlehampton 1985 to 2001
Relief 2001 to 2003
 
B-565
Manchester and District XXXII
Appledore 1986 to 1997
Relief 1997 to 1998
 
B-566
Frank and Mary Atkinson
Lymington 1986 to 2002
(9)
B-567
Percy Garron II
Southend-on-Sea 1986 to 2001
Relief 2001 to 2002
Great Yarmouth and Gorleston 2002 
Relief 2002 to 2004
 
B-568 
Burton Brewer
Hartlepool 1986 to 2000
Relief 2000 to 2005
Training 2005 to 2007
 
B-569 
Blue Peter V
Portaferry 1986 to 1994 
Relief 1994 to 1997 
Helvick Head 1997 to 1998
Relief 1998 to 2000
 
B-570 
Himley Hall
West Mersea 1987 to 2001 
Relief 2001 to 2005
 
B-571
British Diver II
Harwich 1987 to 2002
Relief 2002 to 2006
Training 2006 to 2007
 
B-572
Dorothy and Katherine Barr
St Abbs 1988 to 2002
(10)
B-573
The Lady Dart and Long Life II
Littlestone-on-Sea 1988 to 2001
(10)
B-574
Joseph B. Press
Great Yarmouth and Gorleston 1988 to 2002 
Relief 2002 to 2007
Training 2007 to 2008
 
B-575
John Batstone
Peel 1989 to 1992
Relief 1992 to 1997
Clifden 1997 to 1998
Relief 1998 to 2000 
Crosshaven 2000 to 2002
Relief 2002 to 2005
 
B-576
Ellis Sinclair
Staithes and Runswick 1989 to 2002
Relief 2002 to 2006
 
B-577
Graham hillier and Tony Cater
Brighton 1989 to 1997
Relief 1997 to 1999
(11)
B-578
The Rotary Club of Glasgow
MacDuff 1989 to 2006 
Training 2006 to 2008
 
B-579
Institute of London Underwriters
Clacton-on-Sea 1989 to 1997 
Relief 1997 to 2001
St. Abbs 2001 to 2002
Relief 2002to 2003
 
B-580
Leicester Challenge
Redcar 1990 to 2001
Sligo Bay 2001 to 2002
Relief 2002  to 2009
 
B-581
Andrew Mason
Helensburgh 1990 to 2002
Relief 2002 to 2004
Enniskillen (Upper) 2004 to 2009
 
B-582
Borough of Solihull
Abersoch 1990 to 2002
Relief 2002 to 2007
Training 2007 to 2008
 
B-583
Ken Derham
Mudeford 1990 to 2006
Training 2006 to 2009
 
B-584
Youth of Ulster  
Bangor 1990 to 2006
 
B-585
Peter and Grace Ewing
Kirkcudbright 1991 to 2006
 
B-586
Clothworker
Relief 1991 to 1998
Cardigan 1998 to 1999
Relief 1999 to 2001
Littlehampton 2001 to 2002
Relief 2002 to 2004
Lough Derg 2004 to 2007
Relief 2007 to 2009
 
B-587
Jessie Eliza
St. Catherine's 1991 to 2000
(9)
B-588
Frank and Dorothy  
Teignmouth 1991 to 2006
Relief 2006 to 2008
 
B-589
James Burgess
Walmar 1992 to 2006
Training 2006 to 2009
 
B-590
Wolverson X-Ray
(6)  
B-591
Edmund and Joan White
Cullercoats 1992 to 2006 
Enniskillen (Lower) 2006 to 2009 
(3)
B-592
Ernest Armstrong
Relief 1992 to 1998 
Arran/Lamlash 1998 to 2001
Relief 2001 to 2003 
Enniskillin (Lower) 2003 to 2006
 
B-593
Valerie Hull
Kilkeel 1993 to 2006
 
B-594
Herbert and Edith
Port Erin 1993 to 2006
 
B-595
Falmouth Round Table
Falmouth 1994 to 2007
(9)
Lifeboats highlighted in GREEN are/were based at Irish Lifeboat stations. 
Lifeboats listed in BLUE were built for the Royal Netherlands Sea Rescue Institution (KNRM).
Lifeboats listed in YELLOW require further information. 

Notes

(1) Prototype Atlantic 21. On display at the RNLI Museum, Chatham.

(2) Damaged by vandals and scrapped.

(3) Sold to the Icelandic Association for Search and Rescue (ICE-SAR).

(4) Sold to the Marine Volunteer Rescue (Australia).

(5) Sold to the Finnish Lifeboat Society.

(6) Sold to the Sandown & Shanklin Inshore Lifeboat service. 

(7) Sold to Bantry Inshore Search & Rescue Association (CRBI) Ireland.

(8) Sold to the Virgin Islands SAR.

(9) Sold to the Royal Netherlands Sea Rescue Institution (KNRM).

(10) Sold to the Chilean Lifeboat service.

(11) Sold to Sidmouth Independent Lifeboat.

(12) Sold to the Ballybunion Sea & Cliff Rescue (CRBI) Ireland.