Dallas Bradshaw remembered as extraordinary lady and generous RNLI donor

LLANDUDNO RNLI volunteers took a moment to pay their respects and remember an extraordinary lady and generous RNLI donor.

Llandudno’s relief all-weather lifeboat, John Metters, launched on exercise on Monday evening 25 September during which flowers were scattered in the sea near Colwyn Bay pier in memory of the late Miss Dallas Marilyn Bradshaw.
Dallas was a long-standing Colwyn Bay resident, a generous RNLI donor and an extraordinary lady. She passed away in March of this year aged 81. Dallas was born in Penticton, British Columbia, Canada. She moved to Port Alberni on Vancouver Island to work as a journalist between 1960 and 1964 when she left school. Here, she acquired a desire for a career at sea.

An opportunity to work as a stewardess on a Norwegian ship fell through but she came to UK and saw an opportunity to train as a wireless operator. She moved to Colwyn Bay and enrolled at the Wireless College which was in operation there until the early 1970s.

Working part time to pay for her course, she qualified in 1968 as a marine radio officer following over two years of study. Obtaining a sea going position as a female proved challenging, necessitating working in a local hotel. However, in 1970 she obtained a position with the Marconi Marine Company who were aware that a few companies, including the Denholm Shipping Company, had begun to accept female officers. Dallas was accepted by the Denholm Shipping Company and had the distinction of becoming the first ever fully qualified female radio officer to serve in the British Merchant Navy. Her appointment drew significant media attention at the time.

Dallas served on several Denholm ships but was made redundant in 1982 due to the significant general decline in British registered shipping. She then obtained a position on the British Antarctic Survey Vessel before coming ashore in 1984 where she undertook a variety of jobs in Colwyn Bay to earn a living before joining North Wales Police in 1990.

Capt. Marcus Elliott, Lifeboat Operations Manager at Llandudno Lifeboat Station, himself served as a Merchant Navy officer with Denholm’s so Dallas’s name was familiar to him despite never working with her. Capt. Elliott said, “We were pleased to perform this brief but appropriate act during our training exercise, just a short distance from the location of the college where she trained, in memory of this generous and trail blazing lady”.

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