Scilly Coastwatch Branch Up And Running By Year End

Telegraph Tower

The islands will have a Coastwatch group looking out for mariners in distress and it should be up and running by the end of the year.

John Davis, who set up the Boscastle branch eight years ago, came to engage local opinion and review the potential site for observations at the Telegraph Tower, in the autumn.

John says the Duchy Land Steward, Chris Gregory, is supportive and four men have come forward to volunteer after the appeals on Radio Scilly.

John says his North Cornwall operation began with under a dozen volunteers, but with more singing up after a public meeting.

He’s planning a similar session on St Mary’s over the next few months once the national Coastwatch trustees have given the proposal the green light.

John did receive one e-mail suggesting it was a waste of time. It referred to a failed plan to start a sea cadets group here two years ago.

John says that, as we’re on islands, there are possibly more people watching the water here than you would have on the mainland, but it’s still easy to miss something and we are in a busy waterway. He says lives have been saved by his mainland volunteers.

Fundraising will follow the public meeting.


One Response to Scilly Coastwatch Branch Up And Running By Year End

  1. Michael Fisher January 9, 2012 at 5:40 pm

    Well done, Scilly! I’m a watchkeeper with NCI Stepper Point (near Padstow) and can confirm that it is a very worthwhile spare-time occupation. The training is thorough and professional. But we find we need nearly forty volunteers to keep up a daily, through-out the year, watch, allowing for holidays, sickness etc. Stepper Point is very remote, so for safety’s sake we try to have 2 watch keepers on duty at all times. Telegraph Tower is rather different; you might manage with one watch keeper, but he or she would have eyes in the back of his/her head! I look forward to seeing how this new venture gets on my next visit to Scilly.