Tribute to lifeboatmen

Dawn Whitehead-Brown and Edward Brown outside the new window at Roland L Whitehead & Daughter Funeral Directors
Dawn Whitehead-Brown and Edward Brown outside the new window at Roland L Whitehead & Daughter Funeral Directors
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A lasting mark of respect to what remains the worst disaster in the history of the RNLI has been installed at a funeral parlour.

On December 9, 1886, the crew of the Mexico, a boat bound for Ecuador from Liverpool, ran into difficulty off the Fylde coast.

RNLI crews from St Annes, Lytham and Southport were dispatched to provide assistance, sailing into the eye of the storm. Little did they know the horrors which would await them.

Just hours later, 27 men – fathers, sons, uncles – were dead, claimed by the high seas.

That fateful night the crew aboard the Laura Janet left the lifeboat station on East Bank Road, St Annes.

The station remains to this day and is now a well-known funeral directors, Roland L. Whitehead and Daughter.

With the help of local designer John Goodwin, owners Edward Brown and Dawn Whitehead-Brown have had opaque windows installed.

Edward said: “We just thought it would be nice to do it. It would be nice to make a memorial for the lifeboat men that lost their lives.

“We have put the name of the lifeboat men put into the glass and then we have had a copy of what is the memorial on the prom added.

“Designer John Goodwin helped us do it. It has caused a lot of interest. We’ve had people walking past, stopping to have a look. Many people are interested in the history of the building and the story behind what happened.”