Launching the Brook Lifeboat June 10th 1933

Never before have the beach and cliffs at Brook presented such a scene of animation and interest as on Whit Monday afternoon, when a crowd, which must have numbered 2,000, saw what will probably be the last launch of the Brook lifeboat by horse power...

The fact that our new Island Peer (General Seely) would be in charge as acting coxswain, and that scouts from the All-Island camp at Brooke House would assist in the launch, aroused widespread interest.

About 40 sturdy Rovers and Scouts clad in bathing costumes were waiting on the beach to play the part of shore helpers. Their duties were to push the carriage out into the water far enough to launch the boat and then to haul on the ropes to propel the boat into the water with her crew on board.

General Seely stood at the wheel as the launching operations commenced, but after getting into about three foot of water the carriage became fast in the blue slipper clay. General Seely descended and waded out to give the Scouts the ‘heaves’, but in spite of all their efforts the carriage refused to budge and there was a wait until the rising tide gave a sufficient depth for the actual launch. 

The General climbed back on board, the Scouts hauled away lustily, and the Susan Ashley glided gracefully down the runners into the water, amid a roar of cheers from the crowd onshore. Meanwhile the Scouts had been disporting themselves in the water to the entertainment of the crowd, and after the cooling dip, they were ready for more hard work in hauling the boat ashore and getting her on to the carriage.

The task was well and truly done and without further incident the boat was safely re-housed.

Isle of Wight County Press