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Appeal for Bravery at Sea Awards entries

Heroes of the sea

A skipper who helped save an overboard crewman, who was plucked from the water after a flare was fired, is encouraging rescuers to enter the Bravery at Sea Awards.

Jay Holden, the skipper of the Fishing Vessel Emilia Jayne, won the Shipwrecked Mariner' Society Lady Swaythling Trophy for helping rescue of his crewmate off the Salcombe, Devon coast in March 2019.

Since 1851, the society has presented its Skill and Gallantry Awards awards to individuals and crews who have shown courage and skill in rescues at sea.

The society is calling for nominations relating to rescues that took place between 1 April 2019 and 31 March 2020. The closing date for submissions 12 noon, Friday 1 May 2020 and the awards will be presented in October.

Mr Holden remained calm and professional in contacting the coastguard, turning the vessel around and heading back towards the last known position of his crewman in high seas and darkness.

The severe gale force 9 winds and 20ft seas made it challenging to maintain a steady course but the crew were eventually able to see the casualty in the water. Despite being unable to take him on board immediately, the crew deployed an orange smoke flare to help the winchman identify the casualty and perform a swift recovery.

Founded after the tragic loss of a fleet of fishing boats in 1839, the Shipwrecked Mariners’ Society provides financial support to individuals in need who have worked or are still working at sea in the Merchant Navy and Fishing Fleets, as well as their dependents. Last year the society distributed more than £1.4 million in grants in over 2,000 cases of need and received more than 500 new applications for assistance.

To enter the Skill and Gallantry Awards, contact Capt Justin Osmond RN, Chief Executive Shipwrecked Mariners’ Society, 1 North Pallant, Chichester, PO19 1TL Tel: 01243 789329 or email general@shipwreckedmariners.org.uk.

Mar 17, 2020