Portland Coastwatch Under Increasing Demand
11:58am 22nd October 2014
If you're out at sea, off the Dorset coast, there's a team of people keeping a close eye on you.
Coastwatch at Portland Bill is run entirely by volunteers.
None of the 70 people involved with running the station are paid for the work they do 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
They say they're experiencing a greater demand on their service now the Coastguard have left Portland.
But they're reassuring us that they are not going anywhere.
Station Manager Geoff Peters said; "There has always been considerable confusion re Coastguards & Coastwatch but it needs to be made absolutely clear to all that Coastwatch are staying & carrying on their operations as normal, as they have been doing for the last 17+ years. We continue keeping a visual and radio watch over our busy waters, we are now live on VHF Channel 65 for weather information at the Bill or members of the public can also call our lookout on 01305 860178 for weather information at the Bill."
The station is entirely funded by public donations and every pound given is used to maintain the running of the operation.
Station Manager Geoff Peters said "Nobody gets paid so it's all free. So people volunteer for the love of it and you've got to keep a roster going and keep in mind now the Coastguard in Weymouth has only pulled out, which means more work for us."
You can watch a behind the scenes video of Portland Coastwatch HERE.