22nd June 2019. A team of Coastwatch volunteers spent this weekend raising hundreds of pounds for charity with the help of Gosport shoppers.

 Ten volunteer watchkeepers from the National Coastwatch Institution station at Gosport took turns to make a collection at the Gosport Morrisons store this weekend. The team managed to collect more than £780 over two days, which will help the charity cover its expenses and buy vital equipment. Station Manager Chris Aps said: ‘NCI Gosport would like to thank the good people of Gosport for their generosity in supporting their local NCI Station.’

Over 60 volunteers at the station, based at Fort Blockhouse in Gosport, contribute nearly 7,000 hours a year to the community, keeping a lookout for trouble on the waters and beaches of the Eastern Solent and Portsmouth Harbour. The team, who report directly to HM Coastguard as part of the Search and Rescue family, were recently praised for their hard work and dedication by Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage.

Photo (by Sarah Standing, Courtesy of the Portsmouth News) shows (l-r) Chris Aps, Station Manager, Steve Tatford, Senior Watchkeeper, Peter Keepence, Watchkeeper and Gail Rendle, Deputy Station Manager.

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Currently 56 NCI stations are operational and manned by over 2500 volunteers keeping watch around the British Isles from Rossall  Point in the North West, through Wales, to the South and East of England to Hornsea in the East Riding of Yorkshire. 

NCI watchkeepers provide the eyes and ears along the coast, monitoring radio channels and providing a listening watch in poor visibility. They are trained to deal with emergencies offering a variety of skills and experience, and full training by the NCI ensures that high standards are met.


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