The barometer at Tobermory Lifeboat StationPhoto: RNLI/Sam Jones
The barometer at Tobermory Lifeboat Station

Following the terrible loss of life in the Royal Charter gale of 1859 in which 195 vessels were wrecked in a 24-hour period, the RNLI promoted the use of barometers to monitor air pressure and thus forecast the possibility of storms.

The barometers were displayed at lifeboat stations around the coast which, in the words of Lewis himself, ensured that ‘a more prudent spirit has been fostered’ amongst boatmen and fishermen.