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The previous Lizard Lifeboat Station at Kilcobben Cove
The previous Lizard Lifeboat Station at Kilcobben Cove

The Lizard lifeboat station is located at Kilcobben Cove on The Lizard peninsula. The RNLI first placed a lifeboat, the six-oared, 30ft Anna Maria, at the Lizard in 1859. There is a painting of the Anna Maria on display at Lanhydrock House.
The location of the first lifeboat station on the cliff above Polpeor Cove was not ideal as it made launches a long and precarious operation in rough seas and bad weather.

The third Lizard Lifeboat Station at Polpeor Cove
The third Lizard Lifeboat Station at Polpeor Cove

In 1867 the RNLI established a lifeboat station at nearby Cadgwith. This was closed in 1963 after the new (4th) Lizard Lifeboat Station was operational. The Cadgwith lifeboat house has been used by the Cadgwith Pilot Gig Club since it closed.
In 1885 a new and larger station was built lower down in Polpeor Cove. This station housed a larger lifeboat. The smaller existing lifeboat became the number two boat and was housed in a new station at Church Cove. The Church Cove station was built at a cost of 300 and was used in conjunction with Polpeor for 14 years until it was closed and sold in 1899.
In 1914 a lifeboat station with an integral slipway was built at Polpeor Cove. This third station was a little lower down than the second and the new motorised lifeboat was able to launch directly into the sea.
In 1941 the lifeboat Guide of Dunkirk arrived at Cadgwith. It had been of the 19 lifeboats that helped to evacuate the British Expeditionary Force from Dunkirk. After Dunkirk she was renamed and sent to Cadgwith lifeboat station.
In 1958 it was decided to provide a new larger station at a location from which it would be easy to operate. The RNLI decided that the new station would be built at Kilcobben Cove, which lies 1¼ miles east of The Lizard lighthouse. The construction of the new station was a work of major civil engineering and was completed by 1961 at a cost of 90,000. It was opened on 7th July 1961 by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, who also named the new Barnett class lifeboat The Duke of Cornwall (ON952 - Civil Service No 33). This fourth lifeboat station was originally called The Lizard Cadgwith Lifeboat Station. The name was officially changed in 1987 to The Lizard Lifeboat Station.
In August 1988 a new Tyne Class lifeboat called David Robinson (ON 1145) was placed at the station although this required adaptation work to both the station and the slipway.

On Saturday 23rd July 2011, the David Robinson was replaced by the brand new Tamar class Rose (ON 1300).

See the full history of lifeboats at Cadgwith, Coverack and The Lizard

The new Lizard Lifeboat Station under construction - April 2011   How the new 2011 Lizard Lifeboat Station will look
(Left) The new Lizard Lifeboat Station under construction in April 2011. Photo Credit RNLI/The Lizard Ned Nuzum
(Right) This is how the new 2011 Lizard Lifeboat Station will look when completed.

In 2010 work started on a new Lizard Lifeboat Station at Kilcobben Cove. The Tyne lifeboat David Robinson was removed from the lifeboat house so that demolition work could start. This has now been replaced by a much larger station to house the new Tamar class all-weather lifeboat, which arrived at The Lizard in June 2011. The design of the new station is similar to the Padstow station. The new station was operational in October 2011 with its official opening on 5th May 2012.

The very first rescue launch of the new Tamar lifeboat, Rose, was late on Saturday 23rd October 2011 to the Newlyn crabber, Sparkling Line, that had suffered engine failure. Lizard Tyne class lifeboat - David Robinson  
(Left) Tyne class lifeboat David Robinson after one of her final slipway launches at The Lizard. Photo Credit RNLI/Paul Richards
(Right) The new Tamar class lifeboat Rose at The Lizard Photo Credit RNLI

How to find the Lizard Lifeboat Station
In Helston take the A3083 to The Lizard.
From the The Lizard village take the road going east that is signposted to Church Cove.
You will pass the church on your left and the car park is just beyond the church. Follow the road down on foot until you see a gated entrance on the right with the sign The Lizard Lifeboat. Follow the path through the field up to the station.
Map of Church Cove

Station Address: The Lizard Lifeboat Station, Kilcobben Cove, The Lizard TR12 7PH
Station Opening Times: Weekdays only from 9:30am to 2:30pm
Visitor Contact Mike Lord (Tel: 01326 290 981)
Shop Opening Times: When the lifeboat station is open to the public.

Lizard Lifeboat Station website.

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