Penlee disaster

Bob S
28th July 2006, 20:54
There is a documentary on UK TV BBC1 on Tuesday 1st August at 22:35 describing the Penlee lifeboat disaster.

More info on: http://www.rnli.org.uk/who_we_are/news/news_detail?articleid=130569

Pat McCardle
29th July 2006, 11:16
I was on Stevie Clarkes 'Washington' & we had just dropped the pilot off at the Sunk pilot station when we saw 'Union Star' & I remember Capt'n Bill Sutherland commenting on how 'Union Star' was taking a good battering before she was even into open waters, little did we know what fate would decend upon Her, Her crew, the Penlee lifeboat crew & the people of Mousehole that weekend. 25 years on & it still seems like yesterday?

gdynia
29th July 2006, 13:06
I was on the Goya one of McAndrews that day either departing/arriving Southampton - A great tradegy for all but shows time and time again how devoted our Lifeboat crews are (Applause)

treeve
29th July 2006, 13:30
And still this so vital part of everyday life is provided by donations,
I suppose any form of government finance would involve all
manner of controls and would probably end with much of our
coastline being without any form of rescue facility. I often wonder
whether or not any shipping companies make contributions;
and I mean in response to the sometimes poor ships or company
policy that has occurred over the years.

Such Selflessness and Dedication to Life and Duty is Rare and Precious.
(Applause) (Applause) (Applause)

wully farquhar
31st July 2006, 18:48
Hi all, I was thirty two years involved with RNLI, twenty eight years as coxswain at Thurso on the north coast of Scotland, my first shout on the boat was the Longhope disaster and to me being a first tripper(not so much training in them days) on the boat was a little horrendous.All i can say is that if the government were involved we would not have the super- duper boats that we have today,nowadays the men can very near go to sea in their slippers and i am sure if the gov. were to do with the insitution,i think the men would be still going to sea with sou-westers on,so a wee bit of thought for the ladies who are shaking a collecting tin on the steet corner.
Cheers,---------------Wully. (Thumb)

treeve
31st July 2006, 18:53
Well, Wully, if I had a hat, I would take it off to you and your
so precious crews. And you have confirmed what I have believed.
Lang may yer lum reek....

muldonaich
31st July 2006, 23:40
i could not agree more i well remember the night the barra lifeboat capsized and righted herself the night she went to the assistance of the lone dania luckily no lives were lost brave men every one of them.

nhp651
31st July 2006, 23:59
I am one of the fortunate many who can honestly say that they would not be on this beautiful planet today had it not been for a lifeboat man fishing me out of the fast ebbing River Wyre on my 8th birthday when I had become trapped under the lifeboat slip at Fleetwood whilst doing what all little boys of that age do best.create mayhem.he kicked me up the bum after dragging me up the slipway and told me to get home to my mum.never did tell her what really happened but on june 3rd every year for the past 48 years,I've said a little prayer and shed a little tear,and said THANK GOD FOR MEN LIKE THAT MAN,AND FOR ALL THE WULLY FARQUARS AROUND THE COAST OF BRITAIN.THANKS TO YOU ALL.

billyboy
1st August 2006, 00:03
its all been said, what could i add. one of the finest organisations known to man. excellent craft and exeptionaly well trained men, the finest i have met. i have been a life govenor for about 10 years now and am proud to have been part of a fund raising team.
as someone so rightly pointd out, if the government had it, new posts would be created and the valuable donations would be swallowed up by extortionate salerys and pleasure trips.
long may the RNLI remain an independant and sucessful service. "Hero's all"

sandman
1st August 2006, 09:55
I can remember my late father coming into my room and waking me in tears,When I asked him whats wrong he said the penlee boats gone.I said what do you mean gone,he said gone and all the crew,I have lost some bloody good friends.(father was cox of appledore boat from 1970-1994).

gdynia
1st August 2006, 10:09
The Lifeboat Prayer

Merciful Father, all things in heaven and earth are held within your loving care; look with favour upon the Royal National Lifeboat Institution. Protect and bless the crews of all its lifeboats andall who risk their own safety to bring help to others. Guide all who work for the Institution that they may be faithful to the vision of its founders,sothat it may always be seen as a beacon of hope and light to those who find themselves in peril on the seas. Through the same Jesus Christ, to whomwith You and the Holy Spirit be honour and glory, now and forever. Amen.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

hawkey01
2nd August 2006, 16:55
I recorded the Penlee programme last night having been in hospital yesterday for an op. I am writing this feeling very emotional after watching the tragedy unfold and the amazing men who so gallantly lost their lives. Time does not heal those types of wounds so easily and I am sure that all our respects go out to those still serving the RNLI and to those heroes of the past and their families. (Applause) (Applause) (Applause)

On a slightly lighter note I have also been watching the trawlerman series with great interest and admiration. (Thumb)

Regards
Hawkey01

Peter4447
2nd August 2006, 17:16
Although I had no personal involvement, I can recall this great tragedy all too clearly and I am not ashamed to say that having watched the programme yesterday evening, I found myself sat for a long time afterwards with a lump in my throat and moist eyes.
Peter4447

treeve
2nd August 2006, 17:25
You and me both, Peter, no shame in it ....
I remember when it happened and the feelings that ran
through Mousehole, Newlyn and Penzance .... Our family
were in tears, and a pall of blackness covered life here.

King Ratt
2nd August 2006, 18:12
I am in total agreement with Wully Farquhar. Government involvement would involve lots of "suits" producing rules and regulations. I am sure Trevelyan Richards and Dan Kirkpatrick would have concurred. May they and their crews rest in peace. Regarding the ladies with their collecting boxes retired Coxwain George Davidson of Kirkcudbright lifeboat penned the following:-

A Cautionary Tale.

Mayday, Mayday, Mayday,this is "Annie", "Annie", "Annie",
Mayday, one mile South of Brandy More.
There's a rope in my propeller and the bloomin' anchor's dragging
And the wind and tide are setting me on shore.

I should have veered more cable, but now I'm quite unable
For reasons you could never hope to guess.
I find it hard to say how things came to be this way
But I've never ever been in such a mess.

When the rope went in the screw, there was nothing I could do;
I knocked her out of gear and tried astern;
But even as I tried, the bloomin' engine died
And the shaft is quite impossible to turn.

The gland is leaking badly and I tried the pump but sadly
There wasn't any water coming through.
I took the pipes asunder and found the fault - no wonder
For the valve was jammed wide open by a screw.

I tried to shift the thing with a wire and then with string
It wouldn't budge and desperate at last
I poked it with my finger, and now till death I linger
With my index digit in the pump and FAST!

I've got communication for I'm trapped in a location
By the wheelhouse and the window's open wide
The VHF is handy but the hacksaw and the brandy
Are miles away across the other side.

In utter desperation I've considered amputation
But with 'Martell' anaesthetic out of reach
And the saw I need is too, there's nothing I can do
But pray that I'll be washed up on the beach.

In the bilge the level's rising at a rate that's quite surprising
I can feel her lurch and wallow in the swell
And should poor Annie sink - the thought I dread to think -
When Annie goes Yours truly goes as well.

I've never shot an albatross - don't even have a gun
Yet 'Lady Luck's' abandoned me, but why?
The only slightly wicked thing I know that I have done
Was to make the Lifeboat Lady pass me by.

I saw that Lifeboat Lady with collecting box and flags
Her eyes alight - I knew that I'd been spied;
I hesitated, feigning I was fumbling for my fags
Then altered course across the other side.

Forgive me God, I realise the move I made was mean -
Not like me - I recall it with dismay.
If you could find it possible to scrub my record clean
I'll keep it thus for ever and a day.

I hear the lifeboat coming, I recognise the drumming
Of the diesels when they're running out of synch.
Any moment now I know, they'll board and rig a tow;
How they'll free me from this pump I dread to think.

'Silence Fini', now its past. On the harbour wall at last,
I'm waiting to beach 'Annie' on the tide.
'Mong the faces on the quay, there's one that frightens me
Her eyes alight - I know that I've been spied.

At sea I wasn't queasy, but now I'm damned uneasy;
Not the trauma nor the prospect of a wreck,
Nor the very narrow shave - its the look THAT lady gave
And conscience like a millstone round my neck.

slick
3rd August 2006, 06:55
All,
I also watched the "Penlee Disaster" programme and was humbled, I recalled from somewhere.
"On a sailor's grave no flowers bloom"
Always remembered.
Yours aye,
Slick

Santos
3rd August 2006, 21:48
There are no roses on sailorís graves,

Nor wreaths upon the storm tossed waves,

No last post from the Royals band,

So far away from their native land,

No heartbroken words carved on stone,

Just shipmates bodies there alone,

The only tributes are the seagullís sweeps,

And the teardrop when a loved one weeps

Amen.

John Tremelling
3rd August 2006, 23:08
Nice words King Rat and Santos.

John T

slick
4th August 2006, 07:22
Thank you Santos, I had a very vague memory of the prayer, it was almost a prompt I was reasonably sure someone would recall it.
Yours aye,
Slick

doug rowland
7th August 2006, 23:28
A well made programme which made me somewhat emotional,remembering that foul night when we were battering our way down the English Channel,
catching odd snatches of the tragedy unfolding whilst monitoring VHF 16.When the loss of the lifeboat was confirmed on the news our crew rallied a large collection to go to the dependents in the Penlee community in the compassionate way seafarers respond to such tragic events. As a seafarer,I have only the highest regard for the selfless devotion to their work and bravery of all our lifeboat men. A marvellous organisation the RNLI much admired round the world!
Doug

barrahead
25th August 2006, 00:54
i could not agree more i well remember the night the barra lifeboat capsized and righted herself the night she went to the assistance of the lone dania luckily no lives were lost brave men every one of them.


How many people would you get to go out to sea in the teeth of a gale when everybody else is coming in??

MANXPEDRO
13th September 2006, 20:23
ive been a member for a long while now and this is my first reply, so here goes........!!!!

i also saw the programme back in august, which i thought, did the community/families, lifeboat crew of mousehole and the rnli credit.

i've read the loss of a lifeboat book by Michael Sagar-Fenton, several times now, and is very discriptive, giving excellant detail, and i think, while reading it, you could almost imagine being there.

i was only 8 years old when the desaster occured, and remember very little about it. when i joined my local lifeboat station some 6 or 7 tears later, i began to learn more about the incident.

i some how recall, a television drama, called "run for the lifeboat", which must be going back 20 years or so, which i think, was based on the penlee disaster. please correct me if im wrong. ive looked all over the internet to find a copy, with no joy.

anybody else remember the programme im on about??

kepowee
10th November 2006, 12:47
hi all does anybody remmember the samtamper tragedy april 23 1947 in a 70mph gale in the bristol channel she dragged her anchors and came ashore on scer rocks not far from scer point 37 crew lost their lives and also the crew of the mumbles lifeboat edward prince of wales ken powell

Peter4447
10th November 2006, 13:33
hi all does anybody remmember the samtamper tragedy april 23 1947 in a 70mph gale in the bristol channel she dragged her anchors and came ashore on scer rocks not far from scer point 37 crew lost their lives and also the crew of the mumbles lifeboat edward prince of wales ken powell

Hi Ken
There is a very good description of this tragedy in a book entitled The Grey Widow Maker by Bernard Edwards (ISBN 0-7088-5241-6) published by Futura Books in 1990, including a photo of the Samtampa broken in two off Sker Point.
Regards
Peter4447(Thumb)

kepowee
10th November 2006, 13:48
hi peter i have the two photos of the samtamper on my computer but thanks for the infor i only live 2 miles away from where she went on the rocks at low tide you can still see the remians of her ken

nhp651
18th December 2006, 19:19
On the eve of the 25th aniversary of this sad disaster I would like to offer a prayer to all seafarers and all lifeboat men,wishing them a safe and happy christmas,and hope that in our jovialities and festivities over the Christmas period we can think about those less fortunate than ourselves, with some humility.Please, God, keep them all safe and sound.

hawkey01
18th December 2006, 22:27
I second your thoughts
hawkey01

Peter4447
19th December 2006, 00:04
On the eve of the 25th aniversary of this sad disaster I would like to offer a prayer to all seafarers and all lifeboat men,wishing them a safe and happy christmas,and hope that in our jovialities and festivities over the Christmas period we can think about those less fortunate than ourselves, with some humility.Please, God, keep them all safe and sound.

Amen
Peter4447

meechingman
19th December 2006, 16:39
But for the seamanship and bravery of the crew of a previous Penlee boat, I wouldn't be here writing this. They rescued my father from the waters of Mounts Bay when his ship Taycraig foundered on the Gear Rock. The conditions were similar to those when the Solomon Brown was lost.

God bless our lifeboat crews in all their endeavours. Watch over them and bring them home safe and sound.

Amen

Andy

Tmac1720
20th December 2006, 18:42
What words are ever adequate to thank someone for your life? I stand in unashamed awe of the lifeboat crews and the job they do in selfless devotion to duty and the preservation of life. Brave men who show their courage by deeds rather than words. I am honoured and humbled to stand in their company.

JOHNKITTO
9th May 2007, 19:47
If you have the slightest trace of the sea in your blood then a visit to Cornwall is not complete without a visit to the Penlee Lifeboat house.
After such a visit, I regretted not buying a copy of Michael Sagar-Fentons book "PENLEE the loss of a life boat" Wanting to buy it for me for my birthday, my wife searched all the local book shops without success. She went to our lifeboat station (Scarborough) and they gave her theTelephone number of the Newlyn life boat house. My wife rang them and spoke to a lady who was most helpful. She obtained a copy and had it signed by the author. Only after we had received the book did she accept any Money. The lady........ Mrs J Madron the widow of Stephen Madron, the engineer of the Solomon Brown.

captainchris
9th May 2007, 22:55
I knew the Master of "Union Star", Mick Morton, who was Mate with me on coasters, and as I used to live in Penzance, I knew some of the crew of "Solomon Brown" , my local landlord for one!! It was a real tragedy, not only for us that knew people involved, but the general situation.
Regards,
Chris

janathull
18th May 2007, 07:17
I was on leave when it happened. In the morning I phoned my father who was an engineer with Stevos and he told me they had passed the coaster before things got in a mess and offered him a tow but this was refused less than politley. If they had put a line on him they could have pulled him clear and none of the tradgedy would have happened. Regards Jan.