Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

30 years since Penlee

Collapse
X
Collapse
Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts
  • pagen01
    St Mawganphile
    • Aug 2007
    • 10711

    30 years since Penlee

    Incredibly it is 30 years since this terrible tragedy unfolded, litrally to the moment.

    The Solomon Browne Watson Class lifeboat was launched from the Penlee slip at 20.12 after the horrendous weather conditions rendered the Sea King rescue attempt of the captain, his family, and crew from the powerless Union Star inefective.
    As we now know the Solomon Browne and her brave crew were all lost alonf with the ships crew.

    Coxswain Trevelyan Richards
    Second Coxswain/Mechanic Stephen Madron,
    Assistant Mechanic Nigel Brockman
    Emergency Mechanic John Blewett
    crewmembers Charlie Greenhaugh
    Kevin Smith
    Barrie Torrie
    Gary Wallis

    Captain Henry Morton
    Mate James Whittaker,
    Engineer George Sedgwick,
    Crewman Anghostino Verressimo, and
    Crewman Manuel Lopes
    Dawn Morton
    Sharon Morton
    Deanne Morton

    Russell Smith the American exchange pilot of 'Rescue 80' said this about the crew,

    "the greatest act of courage that I have ever seen, and am ever likely to see, was the penultimate courage and dedication shown by the Penlee [crew] when it manoeuvred back alongside the casualty in over 60 ft breakers and rescuing four people shortly after the Penlee had been bashed on top of the casualty's hatch covers. They were truly the bravest eight men I've ever seen who were also totally dedicated to upholding the highest standards of the RNLI"

    This link is worth reading through, http://westcoast-news.org/story-penlee.htm

    There is a programme on this tomorrow on BBC4 at 22.00.
    http://www.abpic.co.uk/search.php?q=...t=most_popular
  • longshot
    Rank 5 Registered User
    • Aug 2008
    • 1676

    #2
    Penlee Lifeboat

    Exercising with a Wessex off Penzance Promenade 2 years before it was lost

    Penlee Lifeboat, 'Solomon Browne', August 1979


    RNLI Solomon Browne, Penlee Lifeboat August 1979

    This was part of the RNLI Summer Holiday event on Penzance Promenade, shot from the prom with a 200mm lens .
    Last edited by longshot; 20th December 2011, 10:25.

    Comment

    • Lincoln 7
      Better than Rank 1 user
      • Jun 2010
      • 8403

      #3
      The RNLI do a fantastic job, and 9 out of 10 times, although conditions are atrosious, they manage to pull it off and save lives.

      Considering they are prepared to go to Sea in any weather conditions, and are not paid, speaks volumes for these unsung heroes.
      Having had several boats, (Sea going) myself, I realise the value donations to the RNLI mean, WTSHTF.
      Jim.

      Lincoln .7
      Last edited by Lincoln 7; 20th December 2011, 12:13.
      There is no such thing as a problem, just a solution!!

      Comment

      • pagen01
        St Mawganphile
        • Aug 2007
        • 10711

        #4
        Lovely (and touching) shots Longshot, would you be prepared to post them on the 'Sea King 80' thread in the Historic section?
        http://www.abpic.co.uk/search.php?q=...t=most_popular

        Comment

        • roadracer
          Rank 5 Registered User
          • Feb 2009
          • 657

          #5
          Fully endorse what has been said here about the tragedy that occured 30 years ago as well as the courage of those who put their lives on the line to save those in peril on the seas. Their's is a special kind of courage.

          Comment

          • longshot
            Rank 5 Registered User
            • Aug 2008
            • 1676

            #6
            Loss of the Union Star

            As I recall it this accident was an example of the dilemma calling for help both sea and aircraft captains face with mechanical problems .....the Union Star was a brand new coastal ship on its first commercial voyage and had engine failure in filthy weather in the English Channel off Cornwall.... the Captain delayed calling Mayday and the ship drifted in too close to the coast in worsening conditions for an effective rescue
            Last edited by longshot; 20th December 2011, 22:28.

            Comment

            • pagen01
              St Mawganphile
              • Aug 2007
              • 10711

              #7
              I think that was the basics of it, though ISTR the operating company balking at potential towage and insurance costs.
              The fact that the Captain had his wife and two teenage daughters aboard at the time only adds to the tragedy.
              There is no starker illustration of what RNLI crews knowingly face when they launch in such conditions, the Sennen Lifeboat had also launched but couldn't get around Lands End due to the weather and sea state being against it.
              My uncle was with coastguard at the time, but wasn't on duty, he went to the cliffs near Tater Du and recalls the smell of diesel and oil and the feeling of utter helplessness.
              There's two very sad events that I remember vividly as a child in Cornwall, this and the loss of the S-61N on the way to the Scillies, an operation that my Grandad worked for.
              Last edited by pagen01; 20th December 2011, 13:12.
              http://www.abpic.co.uk/search.php?q=...t=most_popular

              Comment

              • Dr Strangelove
                Doktor Merkwrdigliebe
                • May 2008
                • 1384

                #8
                Was on the same engineering course at Camborne tech with a guy who lost a relation on the The Solomon Browne, think it was his cousin IIRC
                Sometimes it's better to be a bumblebee than it is to be Professor Heinkel.

                Comment

                • PeeDee
                  The Big O.T.
                  • Mar 2010
                  • 1260

                  #9
                  Originally posted by Lincoln 7 View Post
                  The RNLI do a fantastic job, and 9 out of 10 times, although conditions are atrosious, they manage to pull it off and save lives.

                  Considering they are prepared to go to Sea in any weather conditions, and are not paid, speaks volumes for these unsung heroes.
                  Having had several boats, (Sea going) myself, I realise the value donations to the RNLI mean, WTSHTF.
                  Jim.

                  Lincoln .7
                  More than 9/10 Jim! 999/1000 more like.
                  I think the whole of the World respects them.

                  One of the best ever "This is your life" programmes was the Cox. of a Lifeboat. They brought on stage some of the people he'd rescued..to not have a tear in yer eye would be unnatural. IIRC, it was a special, 2 hours long? The only other special was Lord Mountbatten.
                  I'd really like to see those again.
                  Higher than Gods, in Concorde or a Mozzy.

                  Comment

                  • pagen01
                    St Mawganphile
                    • Aug 2007
                    • 10711

                    #10
                    That was Matt Lethbridge, coxswain for the St Marys Lifeboat, mainly on the Guy & Claire Hunter Watson boat, before the Robert Edgar Arun class.
                    he was involved with many couragous rescues including the British airways Sikorsky crash in 1983 that I mentioned earlier.
                    http://www.abpic.co.uk/search.php?q=...t=most_popular

                    Comment

                    • PeeDee
                      The Big O.T.
                      • Mar 2010
                      • 1260

                      #11
                      Pagen01.
                      Oddly, I had a memory of this TV programe being in the 70's...and mid 70's at that.
                      My brain needs a reformat and OS re-install!
                      Higher than Gods, in Concorde or a Mozzy.

                      Comment

                      • pagen01
                        St Mawganphile
                        • Aug 2007
                        • 10711

                        #12
                        It went out in Jan 1984 according to this, http://www.eofftv.com/t/thi/this_is_..._1969_main.htm
                        As far as I know he was the only RNLI crew of his standing to have appeared on the show, but could be wrong.
                        http://www.abpic.co.uk/search.php?q=...t=most_popular

                        Comment

                        • richw_82
                          White Knuckle Airlines
                          • Nov 2009
                          • 1680

                          #13
                          Just read the link in your first post. I'm speechless... those guys were heroes, without a shadow of a doubt.

                          Comment

                          • pagen01
                            St Mawganphile
                            • Aug 2007
                            • 10711

                            #14
                            I've just watched the programme on BBC4 and they really were (and still are) the ultimate heroes, volunteer locals, friends, and family who will launch in any conditions and not give up.
                            If you can catch the programme (Cruel Sea: The Penlee Lifeboat Disaster) on I player it is a must see, with great interviews with relatives, witnesses, and the Sea King pilot and winchman - it takes a lot for me to be moved by something I watch, but this programme is incredibly moving.
                            The pilot describes the Lifeboat being lifted out of the sea and dumped down upon the deck and hatches of the Union Star, my uncle also told me this from a witness there, but he recalls that as the lifeboat had hit the deck all its timbers split in the force and that was effectively the end for the Soloman Browne.

                            I didn't realise that this disaster was what introduced the Coastguards authority to be able to order a tow over the captains own wishes.
                            Last edited by pagen01; 20th December 2011, 23:44.
                            http://www.abpic.co.uk/search.php?q=...t=most_popular

                            Comment

                            • longshot
                              Rank 5 Registered User
                              • Aug 2008
                              • 1676

                              #15
                              Lifeboat Solomon Browne Song

                              Found on youtube via the Sea King 80 thread, Cornish Wurzells involvement? and the current Penlee crew singing backing....on the pop side of folksong I guess
                              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTr41...eature=related

                              and a link to pagen01s BBC4 program
                              http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode...boat_Disaster/
                              Last edited by longshot; 21st December 2011, 13:17.

                              Comment

                              Unconfigured Ad Widget

                              Collapse

                               

                              Working...
                              X