A BUTCHER'S assistant with no previous maritime experience has become the latest volunteer member of the sea-going crew of the RNLI lifeboat in Lyme Regis.

Walthamstow-born Dave Holland, nicknamed 'Londoner Dave' joined the Lyme Regis team in 2017 as shore crew and worked hard to complete the 49 training modules needed to pass out as sea-going crew.

Dave moved to Lyme Regis from London in 2016, along with his wife Maria and his three grown up children.

Dave, who alongside his volunteering works as a butcher’s assistant, said: “It has been my dream to live by the sea. I joined the lifeboat crew to make the tea, but I really wanted to do a proper job of being a crew member.

“I think I have proved that you don’t have to have vast sea-going experience to join the lifeboat crew. The RNLI and your colleagues will teach you all you need to know. I am genuinely chuffed to be a member of a great team.”

The 48-year-old's progression was not helped by the COVID pandemic which effectively halted training for nine months.

He has been permitted to take part in around 30 shouts already.

Volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager Nick Marks said: “It is great to see Dave complete his training under such difficult circumstances and he deserves much credit for determination and commitment.

“We are expecting a busy summer so having Dave available as fully qualified crew is especially welcome.”