FALMOUTH RNLI hosted the official naming ceremony and service of dedication of the new inshore lifeboat on Saturday.

It was a special day for the crew, volunteers and friends of the station to celebrate the gift and contribution made by Robina Nixon Chard, before she died in 2012.

Bernard Fox, former chairman of the lifeboat station, delivered a vote of thanks and said:

"We know Robina would have loved to have been here today - to see the result of her legacy. A legacy that will benefit the lifesavers she so admired, for years to come, particularly as it was her wish that it will be benefiting her beloved Falmouth. It’s a special day for everyone who knew her."

The lifeboat then launched from the slipway and pasties and cream teas were served.

Mrs Chard, who lived in Falmouth, left a bequest to fund a lifeboat in Cornwall. She had great respect for the sea, its beauty and its danger.

Her husband Bernard did a great deal of work to support the RNLI in his lifetime and they both admired the bravery, dedication and commitment of those serving on the lifeboats. They were both tireless fundraisers.

To accommodate the new, larger lifeboat, the lifeboat station in Falmouth has undergone some alterations and upgrades which have been funded through an appeal in which the local community raised over £130,000.

Since the Atlantic 85 class lifeboat’s arrival in Falmouth, the crew have kept this crucial piece of kit busy.

Sea trials and involvement in a number of vital assistance to the public have put the new lifeboat through its paces.

With the highest speed reaching 35 knots, it is faster than the recently retired lifeboat Eve Pank, an Atlantic 75, which can reach up to 32 knots.

It is also bigger and can accommodate an extra crew member, being nearly a metre longer, 20cm wider and 12cm deeper.

Members of the family attended the traditional naming ceremony to celebrate Robina’s wish being fulfilled.

This involved the singing of the national anthem, followed by a welcome address from Chris Price, Falmouth Lifeboat management chairman.

Faye Taggart-White and Nina Kitcher, Robina Nixon Chard’s great-nieces, then handed the lifeboat into the care of the RNLI, accepted by David Page (lifesaving manager, south west), before the inshore lifeboat was accepted by Falmouth Coxswain Jon Blakeston, on behalf of the station.

After a service of dedication from Reverend Canon Andrew J Stephenson, the station chaplain, Elliot Holman, a senior ILB helm, invited Faye and Nina to name the lifeboat with the traditional pouring of Champagne over the boat's hull.

Written by Ian and Norman Taggart, nephews of Robina Nixon Chard, read by Faye Taggart-White and Nina Kitcher, Robina Nixon Chard’s great-nieces.

Mr Blakeston said: "Eve Pank has been a superb lifeboat, loved by the volunteer crew who have launched her on service 661 times during her 12 years at Falmouth. She’ll be greatly missed, however we’re very excited to be welcoming our new Atlantic 85 lifeboat and the volunteer crew can’t wait to start their new chapter of lifesaving with the Robina Nixon Chard."

Bryher's Boys provided musical performances, Pips Pasties supplied the food, Pendennis Marina facilitated the event and Falmouth Docks provided parking.