On Call, All Volunteers

Sumner Lifeboat crew are all volunteers. They could be called out at any time of day or night and receive no pay. As locals, they choose to make a big commitment to their community.

Currently there are about 30 volunteer crew. They cover all ranges of experience, from trainees through to skippers and veterans of many rescues, and all ages – from students to retirees.

Washdown

Crew member Finley Passmore (Photo: Endeavour Media & Photographics)

Sumner Lifeboat is a family affair. Active senior crew member Heather McDonald has been in lifeboat service over 27 years, whilst her father Peter has given over forty years service to Sumner Lifeboat. Also on active crew we have father and son Dave and Finley Passmore, husband and wife Patrice and Yvonne de Beer, and their son Niels has just joined as a trainee, and senior crew member Anthony Honeybone has recently been joined by his daughter Elley as a trainee.

As part of their commitment to Sumner Lifeboat Institution and Coastguard, crew undertake regular theory and practical training – read more about what training involves.

If you’d like to join our crew, see the Volunteer page for how to apply.

It is important that we recognise the contributions our volunteer crew make. In a ceremony at the Village Inn, Paul Wisbey of Sumner Lifeboat Institution presented 2020 Service Awards to the following  crew members, along with Coastguard awards presented by Cheryl Moffatt of Coastguard NZ.

2020 Awards Group

Sumner Lifeboat Service Awards 2020
Certificate (3 years):Annabel Flavell
Camilla Gibbons
Howard Nicholls
Lynette Low
Patrice de Beer
Paul Mutton
Paul Cowey
Yvonne de Beer
Silver Medal (5 years):Finley Passmore
Bar (10 years):Josh Scott (2018 missed)
Gold Medal (25 years):John Atkins
Extraordinary Certificates
Senior:Anthony Honeybone
Trainee:Howard Nicholls
Coastguard Service Awards
Coastguard Pin (3 years):Annabel Flavell
Camilla Gibbons
Howard Nicholls
Lynette Low
Patrice de Beer
Paul Mutton
Paul Cowey
Yvonne de Beer
Red Pin (5 years):Finley Passmore
Blue Pin (10 years):Josh Scott (2018 missed)
Gold Pin (25 years):John Atkins

A special mention goes to John Atkins, who received his 25 years service gold award. Splitting his time between Sumner and Picton, John is an operational crew member with both Sumner Lifeboat and Coastguard Marlborough.