Objects | Society


Coble, about 1828

RNLI Grace Darling Museum, Northumberland

Social Reform

1800 – 1899

Cobles are a traditional North East boat. They played a vital role in the development of the lifeboat, when the ordinary fishing coble was transformed into the first ‘lifeboat’.

This is the boat used to rescue nine survivors from the wreck of the
SS Forfarshire in 1838 by William and Grace Darling. Grace became a national heroine. Her actions resulted in her becoming the model Victorian woman; her early death, at the age of 27, only increased her celebrity status. Grace’s actions inspired artists and a huge variety of commemorative souvenirs and products.

This is one of the oldest North East cobles existing today. It was given to the RNLI in 1913 and placed on display in Cullercoats. Campaigners worked to create a permanent home for the coble. In 1938 the Grace Darling Museum opened in Bamburgh, 100 years after the rescue.

Built by Mr Little Jones of Tweedmouth in approx 1828, possibly at Lee, boat builders in Tweedmouth

On display at the RNLI Grace Darling Museum in Bamburgh

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