Richmond Restaurant Sinks

Teddington Lifeboat’s volunteer crew launched towards Richmond at 1.07am this morning (27th April 2015) to discover the historic Boat Restaurant, amongst other smaller vessels by Richmond Bridge, was sinking.  

Fortunately there were no casualties and together with the Fire Brigade the crew helped salvage what they could, clearing the River at the same time.

RNLI crew member James Kavanagh said: “It was mayhem. The river was littered with floating debris and owners of the rowing boats tethered to the pontoon were frantically trying to salvage as much as they could.

“The pontoon had failed and any vessel moored with decent rope was quickly being dragged under. As the tide rose, the stern of The Boat restaurant became fully submerged.”

At time of writing it is unclear caused the vessels to sink – the RNLI commented on their Facebook page “I am not sure the exact cause is known, but it certainly appears that the pontoon didn’t rise with the tide”

According to the ever-trustworthy Wikipedia “in the event of a call-out, every crew member’s pager is simultaneously activated by the London Coastguard. Twenty-four hours a day, 365 days of the year, the crew aim to launch one or both boats depending on the nature of the incident within six minutes of the call to the Coastguard. Their operational target is to be on scene within 15 minutes of the original call.”

The Boat at Richmond Bridge has a long history, originally built in the 15th Century for river processions.   It is now owned by four friends, who have transformed their barge into a British restaurant.

Visit the official website for Teddington Lifeboat Station. You can donate to the RNLI here.