Ilfracombe lifeboats pluck stranded anglers from the rocks after early hours fishing trip goes wrong

Broadsands beach near Combe Martin. Picture: Philip HallingBroadsands beach near Combe Martin. Picture: Philip Halling

Three anglers had a narrow escape after being cut off by the tide near Combe Martin in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

The trio had been cut off on a rock at Broadsands beach near Sandy Cove and one risked his life to raise the alarm.

Ilfracombe RNLI said although experienced fishermen they had underestimated the rise of tide and a 1.5m swell was running in choppy seas.

With no phone signal, one man moved across the rocks to try to raise the alarm, but was washed into the water by the swell.

He was wearing a flotation suit but had a backpack and waders on, so had to struggle to free himself.

He managed to kick off his waders and was battered on the rocks, but was able to make his way to land and picked up a phone signal to call the coastguard.

Both Ilfracombe lifeboats were launched after volunteer’s pagers sounded at 1.25am.

They were soon able to locate the stranded fishermen and the pair were picked up by the inshore lifeboat, transferred to the all-weather lifeboat and taken back to Ilfracombe.

Coastguards administered first aid and the three were picked up to go home.

The RNLI reported the injured man who raised the alarm said: “I never imagined I’d end up in the water and had serious concerns for my safety.”

Volunteer second coxswain Carl Perrin added: “It was a very favourable outcome which could have been so easily a far worse result.”

* Were you one of the anglers cut off on the rocks? We’d like to hear from you if you want to talk about your experience or add any praise for the RNLI. Email or call us on 01271 341628.