Portpatrick lifeboat named

Mrs Brenda Winterbotham is presented with a gift by Sir Andrew Cubie CBE FRSE.'GG 2905057 12
Mrs Brenda Winterbotham is presented with a gift by Sir Andrew Cubie CBE FRSE.'GG 2905057 12

Under a scorching sun and in front of hundreds of people, the new Tamar-class lifeboat at Portpatrick was officially named at the weekend.

The boat arrived on station in November but the official naming ceremony wasn’t held until Saturday.

Holidaying visitors to Portpatrick were treated to a rare spectacle as the naming ceremony for the "John Buchanan Barr" got underway. GG 2905054 12

Holidaying visitors to Portpatrick were treated to a rare spectacle as the naming ceremony for the "John Buchanan Barr" got underway. GG 2905054 12

The vessel was named John Buchanan Barr to commemorate Dr John Barr who was a lieutenant doctor in the 5th Battalion, the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. John died on June 8, 2003, aged 93. His wife Kitty died at the age of 98 in 2008.

In her will she left a bequest for a lifeboat to be named after her husband and that it should be dedicated by her RNLI gold badge-holder cousin Brenda Winterbotham.

Mrs Winterbotham attended the ceremony with her son, Nick Winterbotham, and he said: “If we want to understand why this extraordinary bequest has been made to the RNLI, I believe it has three strands.

“This first was his and Kitty’s lifelong holidaymaking on the Ayrshire coast and their fondness also for Portpatrick. The second must be his service after the war as a medical officer for the Highlands and Islands, where he would come face to face with the fishermen and islanders for whom safety at sea would have been a daily concern.

Mrs Brenda Winterbotham names the Tamar Class Lifeboat "John Buchanan Barr".'GG 2905056 12

Mrs Brenda Winterbotham names the Tamar Class Lifeboat "John Buchanan Barr".'GG 2905056 12

“The third must have been the conversations over the years that Kitty had with her first cousin, my mother. Mum has clocked up many hundreds of thousands of pounds of donations over the past 70 years and holds the RNLI gold badge twice over. I’ve little doubt Kitty caught the lifeboats’ charitable bug from mum and that this is why she stipulated in her bequest that mum should witness and participate in this dedication ceremony.”

The ceremony included music from the Lochryan Pipe Band and the Stranraer Brass Band.

Mrs Barr left a £2.6m legacy, enough to pay for a Tamar boat to be used in Scottish waters. This is now the third Tamar boat in Scotland, the others being stationed at Longhope and Peterhead.

The crew were on station throughout the naming ceremony. GG 2905055 12

The crew were on station throughout the naming ceremony. GG 2905055 12