News (Jan 2015 - May 2014)

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Friends of Teignmouth Coastwatch

We are currently seeking volunteers who are interested in the work we do and would like to help but don't necessarily want to become a watchkeeper.

We would like to form a group of 'Friends of Teignmouth Coastwatch' who would be able to give a couple of hours to help with fundraising and events.

If you are interested please contact us through the website or call in at the lookout where the members on duty will be able to supply more details.

A display and leaflets about our organisation and the work we do can be viewed from 10th January to 23rd January at TAAG in Northumberland Place, who are showcasing local services and charities.

Lloyds Bank Community Fund

Originally published 15th September 2014

Please vote for Teignmouth NCI in the LLoyds Bank Community Fund (until 10th October 2014). Any award received because of your votes will contribute to the New Lookout project.

There are four ways to vote:

  • In a branch of Lloyds Bank;
  • Online Vote Teignmouth NCI. You will receive email with link to activate your vote;
  • SMS Text "Vote NFZ" to 61119;
  • Twitter (details on banner below).

Update November 2014 : This is now closed but we'd like to thank all those who voted for us. We came second and will in due course be presented with a very useful top up to our building fund!

Update 5thJanuary 2015: Teignmouth Coastwatch rewarded in the Lloyds Bank Community Fund

National Coastwatch Institution, Teignmouth has been awarded £2000 in the Lloyds Bank Community Fund 2014 in the Teignbridge area.

Following votes from members of the public Teignmouth Coastwatch has been awarded a grant from Lloyds Bank to enable it to continue doing good work in the community.

The Lloyds Bank Community Fund was set up to help local people across England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands and Isle of Man to have a positive impact at the heart of their community by giving grants to 1,400 local good causes in 350 communities.

Nearly 1.5 million votes were cast for good causes across the country during the voting that took place between 2 September and 10 October. Over 700,000 people will be benefit either directly or indirectly from the good work the 1,400 good causes across the country will be able to deliver as a result of receiving a Community Fund 2014 award.

Teignmouth Coastwatch would like to thank everyone who voted for us and also the Lloyds Bank staff for their help in nominating us. The £2000 will be put into our building fund. Thanks to the generosity of local people and businesses we hope to start work on the new building in 2015. It will be on the site of the existing lookout at Eastcliff but higher up so we get a better view over the pier and a lot larger so that we can get more than two people in comfortably.

We are continuing our fundraising efforts to secure enough money not only for the building but for the equipment and internal fittings needed.

Waitrose Community Matters

Originally published 15th September 2014

Waitrose shares £1000 between 3 charities every month and they have kindly agreed that for the month of September National Coastwatch Teignmouth is one of the three nominated charities.

Please help us if you can during September by asking for a token and placing your token(s) in our section of the fundraising box on your way out.

Update 4th October 2014:

Diane Jolly, Eddy Stephenson, Vida Bamforth, Tracy Collins and Carol Harwood

Staff at Waitrose in Teignmouth last week presented National Coastwatch with a cheque for £575 towards our building fund.

Waitrose Community Matters makes £1000 available each month to divide between 3 charities. Customers are offered a token each time they shop and can choose which of the three charities to vote for by placing their token into the appropriate box. At the end of the month the tokens are weighed and the money is divided proportionately. Teignmouth NCI was one of the charities chosen in September 2014 and we would like to thank the staff at Waitrose and all their customers for their support.

RSPB Seabird Newsletter

RSPB South West produce an annual newsletter to illustrate some of the work they do, with partners, to help conserve our region's important seabird colonies and seek greater protection for them at sea. Last time they reported on seabird recovery on Lundy and work underway on the Isles of Scilly; the recovery of little terns at Chesil Beach; our views on Marine Protected Areas and our contribution to the ban on the discharge of PIBs. This edition looks at further progress on the Isles of Scilly and Chesil Beach, and they welcome progress towards a new protected area in Cornwall and call for help with their annual winter beached bird survey.

Crash Box and Classic Car Club

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Sue Andrews, Teignmouth NCI with Richard Nunn, Chairman of the CBCCC.

Also this month we were given a very generous donation of £500 by the Crash Box and Classis Car Club, Devon.

Established in 1964, the club celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2014. It is probably best known for its annual Historic Vehicle Gathering which is held in the grounds of Powderham Castle. The club has over 500 members who either own or are enthusiastic about classic cars.

This has been a bumper month for our fundraising as we also have to say a big thank you to Lidl at Kingsteignton who very kindly allowed us to make a collection at the store on Saturday last week. This raised a fantastic £255 towards our new lookout. Thank you to everyone who donated. 


We have had several dolphin sightings over the last 7 - 10 days. A small pod of not more than 5 dolphins has been appearing regularly and keeping both us and a number of pleasure boats entertained.

Lindy Hingley of Brixham Seawatch is not familiar with this particular pod and wants to know more. According to Lindy these are bottlenosed dolphins and the pods she knows about are larger.

Lindy would love to know if the dolphins are all the same size in which case they could well be "rebellious break-away teens" or whether there are babies amongst the group.

Lindy's contact information is on her website and she would love to hear from anyone with information. Boats fishing off Teignmouth would be well placed to help but please don't get too close and harrass the dolphins in your enthusiasm to see more. Let the dolphins play with you - not you with the dolphins.

RYA Smartphone App

In June the RYA will be launching a new smartphone app - SafeTrx - which will allow boat users to log their passage plans on line rather than by calling the Coastguard.

The advantage of the SafeTrx system, which will be free to RYA members and available for a nominal fee to non-members, is that not only is the passage plan logged on the SafeTrx server, along with details of the boat and emergency contacts, but using the capabilities of the smartphone the passage is tracked and the plan updated as the voyage progresses. Should the worst occur and the vessel not arrive at its destination (as recorded by GPS or by the skipper) the system sends an SMS message to the skipper's nominated contacts who can then call the Coastguard. The SafeTrx server's record of the last know location will be available to the Coastguard minimising the area needing to be searched.

More information can be found on the SafeTrx Website and from June on the RYA website.

Newton Abbot Races

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Newton Abbot Racecourse held its first evening meeting of the year on Friday 25th April and Teignmouth NCI were privileged to have the first race named after us, The Teignmouth National Coastwatch Hurdle. Mervyn and Isobel were invited into the parade ring to pick the best turned out horse, which they judged to be Sanctioned. The winning lad, in this case a girl, received a prize of £25.The race was won by Foggy's Wall, owned by Mark Woodhouse, who was presented with the winning owner's trophy by Isobel.

After the excitement of the race it was back to the real business of the day for Isobel, Mervyn, Bill and Stuart who were collecting for our building fund. We would like to extend our thanks to Patrick Masterson and the team at Newton Abbot Racecourse for their warm welcome and to all the race goers who gave so generously and donated over £250. Many thanks.

The beautiful weather last week made for a busy week out on the water. Lots of boats to log and a few hardy swimmers as well. Whilst on watch last week we heard Brixham Coastguard on the radio asking for help for a swimmer in trouble. The Sea Sports RHIB was in the vicinity and answered the call, swiftly hauling the exhausted person into his craft and taking him to the River (Back) Beach.

From our lookout we could see a small crowd of people gathering on the beach by Sprat Sands, but didn't know why. The lifeguards maintain a watch on beach users in the summer and can warn people of dangerous areas for swimming. At this time of year we do try to keep a watchful eye on lone swimmers but our view of the channel and the area towards the point is limited. Hopefully when we get our new lookout we will have a better view over the pier.

Sprat Sands is one of our local hazards as an incoming tide, against the flow of the river, can produce strong currents depending on the direction of the wind. Even strong swimmers can be caught out by this. You can also check the sea temperature on line but at this time of year it is still quite a chilly 11°C.

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