Ballycotton, Co Cork, Ireland
The sea is everything. It covers seven tenths of the terrestrial globe. Its breath is pure and healthy. It is an immense desert, where man is never lonely, for he feels life stirring on all sides." Jules Verne
Standing guard, windswept and isolated the silhouette of the Ballycotton lighthouse juts proudly from the steep sloping Ballycotton Island overlooking the bay. Founded on a small piece of Co Cork jutting out into the Celtic Sea, the small fishing village of Ballycotton sits at the western extent of the 25 km long beach which extents eastwards to Knockadoon head. The village, which is out of frame to the right of the above picture is home to the local lifeboat station complete with its 14m Trent Class all weather lifeboat, 14-25 Austin Lidbury.
RNLI lifeboats, stationed at 236 lighthouse stations around the UK and Ireland, are on call 24 hours a day ready to respond to any emergency at sea and around the coastline of our islands. Incredibly, this service is undertaken on a charitable basis funded entirely on voluntary donations with no funding from central government. The lifeboats, dependent on a network of over 30,000 volunteers to run the organisation and man the boats, rescue on average 22 people a day. Despite the calmness of the Celtic Sea above, these brave volunteers operate in all weather in strongest winds, wildest seas, putting their lives on the line in order to save others. If you wish to donate to this brilliant charity, you can do so on the RNLI website.