The picturesque angling village of Ballycotton is much favoured by deep sea anglers. It
has a long maritime history, and it was off Ballycotton in 1837 that the famous steam
ship the “Sirius” was lost. She had previously been the first passenger steam ship to
cross the Atlantic. Today the Royal National Lifeboat stationed at Ballycotton is one of
the most modern afloat. Just off the coast, Ballycotton Island has a 19th century
lighthouse.This service has a very commendable history with many famous
rescues in years gone by.
Ballycotton lifeboat station
Ballycotton lifeboat station opened in 1858. One of the most famous lifeboat rescues was
carried out by the Ballycotton lifeboat when the RNLI's Gold medal for gallantry was
awarded to coxswain Patsy Sliney, Silver medal to the second coxswain, J L Walsh and motor
mechanic T Sliney, and Bronze medals to M C Walsh, J S Sliney and W Sliney and T Walsh for
the service on 11 February 1936 when the Daunt Rock Lightvessel broke away from her
moorings. A whole gale was blowing, with a very heavy sea, rain and snow. When the
lifeboat put out she met seas so mountainous that spray was flying over the lantern of the
lighthouse 196ft high. The lifeboat did not return to her station for three days. She had
then been out on service for 63 hours, during which time her crew had only three hours'
sleep. For 25 hours they had no food and all came back suffering from colds and salt water
burns. The lightvessel's crew of eight were rescued. This was one of the most exhausting
and gallant services in the history of the Institution.
Sited on Ballycotton Island, the light was first exhibited on June 1, 1851. The tower was
painted black in 1902. In 1975, the light was converted to electricity and the original
1851 optic was replaced by an AGA sealed-beam lamp array. The lighthouse was automated in