VOLUNTEERS at Dorset’s Coastwatch stations have been honoured with a royal award for outstanding work in the community. Watchkeepers at the four National Coastwatch Institution (NCI) stations across the county are celebrating after being given the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.
The award is the highest in the country for volunteer groups and recognises outstanding work done in the community.
Geoff Peters, station manager at Portland Bill NCI, said: “I feel so proud – this is great news for the Dorset NCI stations and most importantly recognition for the volunteers and all the people who backed our bid and made it possible.
“This is a really big deal for us, we’re all really excited and proud.
“Thanks must go to the 160 watchkeepers for their commitment, they have clocked up 10,000 hours of voluntary service during the year.
“Three of the stations are open every day except Christmas Day.”
The four Dorset stations are based at Peveril Point in Swanage, St Alban’s Head on the Isle of Purbeck, Portland Bill and Lyme Bay at Burton Bradstock.
NCI was founded in 1994 to support the coastguard by keeping a visual and radio watch along the UK’s shores. Its volunteers alert the coastguard to problems and potential dangers.