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Tyne and Wear HER(12997): St. Mary's Island, Ferryhill - Details

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N Tyneside

St. Mary's Island, Ferryhill

St. Mary's Island


Maritime Craft

Transport Vessel

Cargo Vessel




A steamer of 1086 tons, which struck a mine on 1st January 1940. She lies 2200 metres off Seaton Sluice at N 55 06 00 W 001 27 00. She was 221 feet long with a beam of 33 feet. Built by Hall Russell and Co. in 1919 and owned by the Aberdeen Coal Company (Collings). Steel, 1,086-ton 67.38m long, 10.16m beam and 4.26m draught, British steamship, registered in Aberdeen. She was built in 1919 by Hall, Russell & Co. at Aberdeen for the Aberdeen Coal & Shipping Co. Ltd. Her single steel propeller was powered bya three-cylinder, triple-expansion steam engine using two boilers. She had one deck, four watertight bulkheads and a superstructure consisting of a 39.8m quarter-deck, a 4.8m bridge-deck and a 8.2m forecastle. On 21 January 1940 (Spokes and NMR database records the date as 1st January 1940), the Ferryhill was carrying a 1,200-ton cargo of coal, on passage from Blyth for Aberdeen when she detonated a mine laid by a German submarine. The vessel keeled over and foundered in minutes, taking her crew of eleven down to the bottom with her. The wreck, which lies approximately 1.5 miles north-north-east of St. Mary’s Lighthouse, was dispersed with explosives by the Ministry of War Transport in 1955. The Ferryhill lies orientated in a north to south direction, on a hard, flat seabed of sand and stone in a general depth of 20m. The remains are totally collapsed and well broken up, with her boilers, condenser and engine standing upright, surrounded by a mass of broken machinery, steel framework, iron pipes and bent hull plates, spread out over the seabed. Ian Spokes database gives an alternative size as 221 x 33 x 14 (possibly in feet). Grid reference conversion made 18.01.2011 with with Lat/Long referenced as N 55 05 40 W 01 26 56




Peter Collings, 1991, The New Divers Guide to the North-East Coast, page 48; Young, R. (2001) Comprehensive guide to Shipwrecks of the North East Coast (The): Volume Two, Tempus, Gloucestershire. p. 175, Ian T. Spokes Wreck Database, Inga Project, National Monument Record

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