During the years he lived in Cornwall, Arnold was much involved in the area's musical and cultural life. On July 19, 1968, a new lifeboat station was inaugurated in Padstow. For the occasion Arnold composed a special march, The Padstow Lifeboat, which was actually first performed on June 10, 1967, by the Black Dyke Mills Band under Arnold's direction as part of the BBC International Festival of Light Music. It was subsequently performed at the station's inauguration ceremony by the St. Dennis Silver Band, again conducted by the composer.
One of the distinctive features of this march was inspired by a lighthouse near the Padstow station, whose foghorn sounded a pitch between middle C and D. Arnold incorporates this sound in his march, rounded off to D, as the composer put it, "for the sake of musical unity." A stomping march rhythm accompanies the opening tune, in the key of A flat, rudely punctuated by that foghorn D. Later portions of the march feature a more laid-back melody with embellishments, and a briefly threatening arpeggio-laden section. The opening tune returns, and the march closes with another statement of the embellished second theme.