Who We Are

Marine Rescue Port Stephens is an accredited fully equipped Search and Rescue Co-ordination Centre (SARCC).  It is staffed 24 hours per day throughout the year by highly trained volunteers.

Marine Rescue Port Stephens was originally a division of the Royal Volunteer Coastal Patrol (RVCP).  The Volunteer Coastal Patrol was founded in 1937 and was the oldest and largest volunteer maritime search and rescue organisation in Australia.

The Volunteer Coastal Patrol commenced operations as a Royal Australian Navy Auxiliary Service, maintaining port security and patrolling coastal waters.

Following WWII Volunteer Coastal Patrol became a marine rescue service for the public.  Volunteer radio operators monitored the marine band radios emergency channels while volunteer boat crew aided vessels in distress in all types of weather, 24 hours per day.

The Port Stephens Division of the Royal Volunteer Coastal Patrol was founded in 1982 and the first transmission was made on 21 December 1982.

Originally operating from a caravan located on Nelson Head in 1984 it was moved into a radio base constructed on top of the old World War II bunker at the same location.  In 1993 the radio room was relocated to its’ present position.

In 2010 the RVCP merged with all other marine rescue organisations in NSW to form Marine Rescue NSW, which operates under the control of the NSW Police Marine Area Command.
Our Vision

To provide, through motivated and satisfied volunteers, one of the most effective, innovative and dependable Marine Radio and Search and Rescue Bases in Australia
Our Mission
To provide an effective 24-hour Marine Radio and Search and Rescue response to the community

in accordance with State and National rescue policy.

Maintain the Nelson Head historic heritage site to a high standard for posterity and public access.