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Friday, 6 September 2013

Newlyn's Old Man of the Sea looks forward to plenty of DIY around the house!

Andrew Munson, has been at the helm of Newlyn Harbour for 30 years!

NEWLYN’S harbour master, said to be the longest serving in the UK by the port’s commission, is to step down after 30 years of service. 

Andrew Munson, who first joined the team as a trainee clerk in 1969 and was appointed his current position 10 years later, will retire from his post towards the end of the year. ​

Andrew wil remain as French Consul for the port
which will be some consolation for any visiting French fishing boats 

He will soon oversee his last boat...
up going up the slip
The town’s harbour commissioners have appointed Rob Parsons to succeed the position. Having joined up with the board this month Mr Parsons is currently serving as harbour master designate alongside Mr Munson for a transitory period. He will be instilled fully at the end of the year. Mr Munson said he has faith in his replacement and said he is sure “he will have the harbour at his heart. “As far as I’m concerned Rob will do a good job - I think he will do well,” he said. “He’s now working with me to ensure he’s the right man. At the end of the year the intention is to hand over completely. “It’s a new beginning. 

It’s a sweep clean - he may have different ideas, but I would like to think that he will continue to further development of the port.” Originally from Basingstoke, a move to the Isle of White for the soon-to-be harbour chief was followed by a career in the Royal Navy. Now the ex-serviceman is excited about the move to west Cornwall with his family and a new chapter. 

the boats have always been in a safe pair of hands...
steering the harbour through some pretty turbulant times
Mr Parsons first visited the port on HMS Gleaner in 2010 and said he immediately fell in love with it. Before taking on the role, he said: “It’s a dream come true,” and added he is “looking forward to integrating and working with all those involved and interested in the port as this is an exciting time for Newlyn Harbour.” 

No doubt Andrew will hand over his regular Tuesday morning appearances on James Churchfield's Radio Cornwall Breakfast show to new man Rob Parsons.

His predecessor has been paramount to a number of changes and welcomed numerous visitors to Newlyn’s quays over the years. The stalwart oversaw the building of the Mary Williams Pier in 1980 and its expansion in 1988; the fish market; the pontoon system in 2006; and slipway facility developments in 2006. He also hosted a number of royal visits during his tenure, including The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, the Duke of Cornwall, the Prince of Wales and the late Diana, Princess of Wales. 

Andrew personally towed many of the port's fleet to be scrapped as part of the EU decommissioning schemes

Although his job is now coming to an end, Mr Munson said he will certainly be kept busy. “My wife has got plenty of things lined up for me,” he said. “There’s some decorating to do and I will spend more time with my grandchildren. “I shall still keep on the French consular position and as Penlee operations manager at the lifeboat station.” 

He will continue as Operations Manager for the Penlee Lifeboats
The Newlyn man also noted the work he has done over his 30-year stint. “I have had several big projects - I came in when the commissioners decided they wanted to improve the facilities here. “I have seen some major developments. I would like to think I have benefited the harbour.”