22 May 2024

Could you help keep watch along the coastline?

NCI Hornsea is holding a major recruitment event at the end of this month as it seeks to boost its volunteer watchkeeper teams.

The NCI Hornsea station operates two watches a day for 365 days a year. Recruiting new watchkeepers is a critical part of the station’s programme as this allows it to maintain its planned inclusive watch programme. Over a normal week, this means it must have access to a total of 42 watchkeepers to cover all watches, with three on duty per watch.

During the open weekend at the station on the promenade at Marine Drive, from 10am to 4pm on Friday, March 31, through to Sunday, April 2, it will be open for people who have an interest in joining to pop in and chat to members of the recruitment team.

They will briefly outline NCI Hornsea’s work, responsibilities and how it relates to other search and rescue organisations.

A brief guided tour of the station and its equipment will be included. Those who then wish to proceed to the next phase will be invited to a series of “taster” visits that offer an in-depth look at the work of NCI Hornsea. These visits will be in the form of three one-hour introductory sessions and are designed to provide an opportunity to experience first- hand how the station operates.

The next step in the process is linking volunteers up with dedicated “training mentors” who will guide them through the full training programme, including a VHF radio course.

A spokesman said: “When you feel confident and comfortable with the training you have received, you will undertake a comprehensive on-the-job assessment. The VHF radio training programme is in the form of an online training course and concludes with an assessment carried out by the training provider. Once you have passed both, you will become a fully fledged watchkeeper.

“The watchkeeper role is quite demanding but very rewarding. We are there to keep the public safe while they enjoy and use the coast for leisure or as their working environment. Our slogan says it all: ‘Eyes along the coast’.

“Please come along and have a look around, we look forward to welcoming you to the station.”