Men’s life-saving work over the decades to be recognised at charity’s award night

Hartlepool RNLI volunteers Tommy Price, Robbie Maiden and Mike Craddy who are to receive long service awards. Photo by RNLI/Tom Collins.
Hartlepool RNLI volunteers Tommy Price, Robbie Maiden and Mike Craddy who are to receive long service awards. Photo by RNLI/Tom Collins.
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Three men who have dedicated 80 years of service on the seas between them are to be rewarded for their voluntary work.

Hartlepool coxswain Robbie Maiden, lifeboat operations manager Mike Craddy and admin officer Tommy Price are to be recognised for their time as volunteers at the RNLI’s Ferry Road lifeboat station.

They will be presented with their accolades at a ceremony at The Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds next month.

Mike, 66, who will receive an award for his 20 years and welcomed the title, said: “My job has been made very easy by the invaluable support of the crew at the station.

“Being involved in some memorable rescues over the years has made the job of saving lives at sea extremely worthwhile and it’s been a privilege working with both Robbie Maiden, Tommy Price and the crew at the boathouse, just working alongside the volunteers has been amazing for their selfless dedication and bravery.

“I am very proud of the volunteers here and the service we provide.”

I think I could write a book about some of the rescues I have been involved in but without a doubt simply helping people who are in trouble at sea is extremely rewarding.

Robbie Maiden

Tommy, 72, said: “Thirty years ago two good friends of mine, Ian Galbraith and Ossie Rennie who were already on the crew here, suggested I came down and joined up and now 30 years later I still enjoy volunteering for the institution.”

Looking back at his time with the RNLI Tommy recalls being aboard the Scout lifeboat when it capsized in 1993 as a “momentous occasion”.

He said: “Overall it’s been a very satisfying experience playing a part in possibly saving someone’s life or simply helping people in trouble at sea.”

Robbie, 50, who is also to receive a 30-year award and was thrown overboard when the Scout capsized, added: “The lifeboat has been a tradition in the Maiden family for many years with my dad Robbie and brother Ian being part of the crew for many years.

“I clearly remember joining, my mam signed my papers at the time.

“I think I could write a book about some of the rescues I have been involved in, but without a doubt simply helping people who are in trouble at sea is extremely rewarding.

“The dedicated volunteer crew we have at Hartlepool have a high standard of training, equipment and technology supplied by the institution to help save lives at sea.

“I am really looking forward to the presentation at Leeds, it’s always good to catch up with both old and new friends.”