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William Fleming (GC)

William George Fleming
William Fleming GC

Born 1865
Gorleston, Norfolk, England
Died 1954
Occupation Seaman
Coxswain of the Gorleston lifeboat (1922-1934)

William George Fleming[1]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Norfolk Maritime Heroes & Legends", Nicholls, M., Pub: Poppyland Publishing, 2008, ISBN 978-0-946148-85-1
  2. ^ County A to Z Atlas, Street & Road maps Norfolk, page 147 ISBN 978-1-84348-614-5


  • SS Georgia

See also

Billy Fleming was awarded a SS Georgia.


During his lifeboat career Billy had been involved in many services of note. In 1922[1] the lifeboat went to the rescue of the SS Hopelyn which had run aground on Scroby Sands. The lifeboat Kentwell was unsuccessful in her efforts to get the crew of 24 from the SS Hopelyn to safety after damaging the lifeboat against the hull of the Hopelyn. The crew were eventually rescued by the Lowestoft lifeboat Agnes Cross which also attended the rescue.

SS Hopelyn

Notable rescues

Billy Flemming served on the Gorleston lifeboat through the latter years of the 19th century, and spanning the first four decades of the 20th century.[1] He was in his late 50’s when he became coxswain in 1922, a post he held until 1934.[1] Over his 49 years of service he helped to rescue 1,188 people.[1]


William Billy Flemming was born in Gorleston on Sea in 1865.[1] As a young man he worked as an ordinary seaman, working on small sailing vessels on the east coast of England. He is recorded on the 1881 census as a seaman working on the Charlotte Cole. He lived for most of his life in Pavilion Road,[2] Gorleston, just a small distance from the Lifeboat station. He joined the crew of the Great Yarmouth and Gorleston lifeboat in the mid-1880s.[1]

Early life


  • Early life 1
  • Coxswain 2
  • Notable rescues 3
    • SS Hopelyn 3.1
    • Awards 3.2
  • See also 4
  • References 5


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