Fenit RNLI member becomes first female lifeboat coxswain in Ireland

Fenit RNLI welcomes its first female lifeboat Coxswain, Denise Lynch

A Fenit RNLI member has become the first female lifeboat coxswain (pron COX-IN) in Ireland.

Denise Lynch has been a volunteer with the RNLI since 2001, and has served on both their inshore and all-weather lifeboats.

Denise Lynch is currently the only woman to hold the senior position of coxswain on an operational lifeboat crew in Ireland.

The 37-year-old, who comes from a prominent fishing family in Fenit, began as a volunteer with Fenit RNLI in 2001.

For a number of years she’s been a navigator on the all-weather lifeboat, and a helm on the inshore lifeboat, which involves being responsible for the crew and all that happens during a rescue.

Denise Lynch says she fell in love with lifeboats when she visited Fenit lifeboat station on a trip from primary school.

As a child, she knew and looked up to the lifeboat coxswain and decided that when she was old enough, she would join the lifeboat crew.

There are currently 155 female lifeboat crew in Ireland, and the charity is looking to recruit more volunteers for sea-going and station roles.