Offshore lifeboat with full launch system being auctioned on eBay for £400,000

An offshore lifeboat with a full launch system is being auctioned on eBay - for more than £400,000.

Volunteers at one of the UK's few remaining independent lifeboat stations are auctioning the orange and black vessel to raise money for a brand new £2million all-weather lifeboat.

Prospective buyers can head to eBay to enter bids - with a starting price of £300,000 or a buy now option at £420,000.

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The life-saving boat is in full working order and can reach up to 37 knots (43mph).

An offshore lifeboat with a full launch system is being auctioned on eBay - for more than £400k. See SWNS story Volunteers of one of the UK's few remaining independent lifeboat stations are auctioning the orange and black vessel to raise money for a brand new £2million all-weather lifeboat. Prospective buyers can head to eBay to enter bids - with a starting price of £300,000 or a buy now option at £420,000. The life-saving boat is in fully working order and can reach up to 37 knots (43mph). It has belonged to Caister lifeboat station in Norfolk - one of Britain's 55 independent stations - since 2004.

It has belonged to Caister lifeboat station in Norfolk - one of Britain's 55 independent stations - since 2004.

Volunteer chairman Paul Garrod said: "The set-up is 18 years old so we just need a newer version to continue saving lives on the East Anglia coast.

"There's been a little bit of interest. It's a very specialised thing that we're selling. We'd like it to go to another independent lifeboat station in the country."

The lifeboat, measuring 11m x 4m, comes with a trailer and pulling tractor.

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Caister's crew has commissioned Diverse Marine shipyard in the Isle of Wight to build their new all-weather lifeboat. The new model, including the trailer and pulling tractor, will cost £2.6million.

Caister lifeboat station has a 15-strong crew and responded to 16 shouts last year.

It is independent of the RNLI after the charity pulled funding in 1969 to invest in the nearby Great Yarmouth station instead.

Paul, 55, said: "It was like the heart of our village being ripped out. The crew at the time each put in £25 to keep going and become independent.

"We now need donations of £200,000 a year to keep the lifeboat station running."