Penarth RNLI has a new helmsman.

On Tuesday, April 16, volunteer James King successfully qualified as the latest helm of the Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat.

Mr King began volunteering for the station in 2013 and has since been dedicated to his training and the team.

He commented on his initial aspirations: "I joined with hardly any boating knowledge or experience.

"I was keen to get my training signed off, so I could be useful on the team."

After passing his casualty care first-aid training, he kickstarted a new career with the Welsh Ambulance Service, discovering that he enjoyed treating those who are unwell.

The journey to becoming a helm involves completing 13 training modules and a ‘pass out’ assessment.

For Mr King, a significant change in mindset was required, with increasing responsibility for maintaining situational awareness and ensuring the crew's safety.

Despite these challenges, the satisfaction derived from volunteering with the RNLI is immense.

He said: "Everyone who volunteers for the RNLI has a similar mindset, and with such a diverse crew there’s a real passion for it."

He highlighted that some crew members have recently received long service awards, awarded for volunteering years ranging between 20 and 50.

As for the next step in his RNLI role, he will maintain his training and assist their current crew in honing and maintaining their skills.

Privileged with the responsibility of command during a rescue shout, he jests: "Now I just need to choose which boat to take on the next shout…".