Strangford Lough Wreck List
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Vessel Type:

Former Target Towing Vessel

Location:Co. Down
Date of Loss:23rd May 1985Place:Strangford Lough
Cause of Loss:Struck rocksBoat Dive from:Portaferry or Strangford
Charted Depth:10mIrish O.S. Map:Discovery Series No. 21
Height of Wreck:ScatteredAdmiralty Chart No:2156
Hull Material:WoodLatitude:
Type of Seabed:GravelLongitude:
Average Visibility:5 - 10mDiving Experience:Experienced Novice
Image available?Yes - see below
 
Diving Information:
  • Lies off Kilclief, Strangford Lough Narrows
  • Wreck broken up during winter storms of 1985/86.
  • Slack water is essential, and should be dived during slack low.
  • Boat should be well anchored as tidal run can be very strong.
  • Dead slack water does not seem to occur in this area. The tide just swings round on the turn.
  • The propellers were removed in September 1985.
  • Ideal boat dive for novices, as it is shallow with good visibility.
 
Historical Information:
  • Formerly a Royal Navy target towing vessel, and Mine Sweeper during WW2, she had been converted for private use. 64.6ft x 17.9ft x 10ft and grossed 50 tons. Powered by a diesel engine (various makes supplied) driving a single shaft = 9 knots. They carried no fixed armament, but could always carry machine guns.
  • These MFVs were based on a commercial design and built in large numbers in WW2 as general purpose harbour tenders, mainly used to transport personnel and perhaps stores in anchorages and local waters. They were built with an eye to disposal post war, as there would be a ready market for such vessels. This is probably MFV.110. Built by Ouvery at Oulton Broad, Norfolk. Ordered 22 Oct. 1942 and launched in December 1943.
  • In December 1948 she was attached to HMS DRYAD, the navigation training school at Southwick, and remained in this role until 1962 when she became a training vessel for the RNR at Belfast. She was sold out of service in 1966 to become the Tornamona.
  • While on charter to the Isle of Man, with motorbikes and riders due to take part in the TT Races, she struck St. Patrick's Rock and lost her rudder.
  • Drifting in the strong currents, she then struck Angus Rock and began to sink rapidly. Luckily everyone managed to take to the liferafts and were rescued by the Portaferry Lifeboat shortly afterwards.
  • During the next few days all the bikes were recovered.
  • A notable passenger on board was motorcyclist, Joey Dunlop.
 

© by kind permission of Jack Noble


 

© by kind permission of Jack Noble


 

© by kind permission of Jay Johnston

© by kind permission of Jay Johnston


 
 
Source Publications:
"Shipwrecks of the Ulster Coast"
byIan Wilson
Impact Printing 1997 - ISBN: 0948154993
 
Other Sources:
Randal Armstrong
-
Castlereagh SAC (1985)

Strangford Lough Wreck List

Last update - 01-Jun-2014

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