LAST MO­MENTS OF HIS­TORIC SHIP

CAUGHT ON CAM­ERA: DRA­MATIC LAST MO­MENTS AS RNLI AND COAST­GUARD ARE POW­ER­LESS TO SAVE STRICKEN VES­SEL

Bangor Mail - - FRONT PAGE -

THIS is the dra­matic mo­ment a his­toric pad­dle steamer sank off the Holy­head coast.

The MV Oliver Cromwell, a steamer and river­boat ho­tel, went down around 12 miles off the Anglesey coast as it was be­ing trans­ported to Ire­land on Fri­day.

Holy­head Coast­guard said they were called at about 2pm to re­ports of the in­ci­dent, but they could not do any­thing to pre­vent the boat sink­ing around three hours later.

The boat, which was built in 1922 and con­verted into a river­boat ho­tel in 1993, was be­ing towed to Col­eraine af­ter its sale to a new owner.

No­body was in­jured and the coast­guard said the sink­ing did not cause any pol­lu­tion.

The RNLI was also called out to as­sist.

A spokesman said: “The call from UK Coast­guard at 2.20pm cited a pad­dle steamer on tow to­wards Ire­land tak­ing on water ap­prox­i­mately 10 miles west of South Stack.

“Holy­head’s Sev­ern class all-weather lifeboat Christo­pher Pearce launched and headed to the scene, ar­riv­ing there within 40 min­utes.

“On ar­riv­ing at the scene, it was ev­i­dent the 36 me­tre ves­sel was in trou­ble and be­gin­ning to sink from the bow.

“She was be­ing towed by tug to­wards Ire­land af­ter a pe­riod in the south of Eng­land.”

The crew found the pad­dle steamer did not have any­one on board and did not con­tain any fuel.

The spokesman added: “A very quick de­ci­sion was made by the coxswain that the sit­u­a­tion was too dan­ger­ous to try and put any crew on board the stricken ves­sel.

“Within half an hour, the ves­sel had sunk fur­ther into the sea, and at 4.20pm she sank com­pletely into the 50 me­tre deep wa­ters.”

Holy­head coxswain Tony Price said: “It was very sad to see such a lovely ves­sel sink like that, but for­tu­nately no one was en­dan­gered and the lack of fuel on board meant there were no en­vi­ron­men­tal is­sues.”

The steamer had been moored in Glouces­ter Docks be­fore be­ing sold and moved to­wards Ire­land.

GO­ING, GO­ING, GONE...

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.