Needles NCI recognised with Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service 2018
It has today been announced in the London Gazette that the charity National Coastwatch Institution at Needles Station has been honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.
National Coastwatch Institution is a fully voluntary group and mans The Needles lookout 365 days a year, keeping a watch on all mariners and craft both leisure and commercial. The station currently has 65 volunteer watch keepers, male and female, who operate the lookout from 0900 to 1700 daily with extended hours during the summer months. The facility is an integral part of the search and rescue services for the Western Solent and is independently evaluated annually. It reports directly to Solent Coast Guard. Last year Needles NCI was involved in 25 marine incidents and several land-based incidents.’
Uniquely among other National Coastwatch stations Needles Station is part of the safety and rescue cover for the worlds largest yacht race – The Round The Island, the worlds largest walking festival “Walk the Wight” and covers 4 marathon and half marathon runs. In addition it supports West Wight Sports & Community Centre Cross Solent and Needles Swims.
Needles NCi is developing a first responder capability, with defibrillator, to be of assistance to the 300,000 people who visit the needles site annually. Currently over half of the 65 watch keepers are trained first aiders and the intention is for all to become qualified.’
Saturday 2nd June 2018