Tyne and Wear HER(13792): South Shields, Ragni (Ebchester, Hillbrook, Frith of Eide) - Details
South Shields, Ragni (Ebchester, Hillbrook, Frith of Eide)
Steel, 1,264 ton, Norwegian-registered cargo vessel, 69.9m long, 4.69m beam, 4m draught. She was built as the Frith of Eide by the Campbeltown Ship Building Co. in 1919 and owned at the time of loss by Rederi A/B Ragnito. Her single propeller was powered by a three cylinder, triple expansion steam engine, employing two boilers. Her machinery was built by Ross & Duncan Ltd at Glasgow. She had one deck, a well-deck, a 14.6m bridge-deck and an 8.2m forecastle. She was equipped with a brass, pedestal-mounted telegraph and steering-helm. On 15 December 1939, she was on passage from Hull for Malmo with an unspecified cargo of coal and a crew of six, when she detonated a German-laid mine, six and a half miles east-south-east of the Tyne north pier. The explosion almost blew her bows off and she foundered immediately, taking all hands with her. The wreck lies fairly close to that of the steamship H.C. Flood. Although neither wreck has been positively identified, both of the vessel’s dimensions match those of the wrecks, while their condition makes them almost certainly to be from the Second World War, as they are close to the reported sinking positions for the two ships in question. She is lying on her side, 6.5 miles ESE Tyne N. Pier, oriented in a south-east to north-west direction and standing 9m proud of the hard sand seabed at a general depth of 52m (Spokes/NMR records it as 50m). She is very substantial with her superstructure still fairly intact with quite a lot of damage amidships and to the bow. Bridge equipment and navigational instrumentation is intact and the ship’s bell is thought to be on-site. The NMR has two entries listed for this ship-NZ 46 NE 102 and NZ 57 SE 1.
Young, R. (2001) Comprehensive guide to Shipwrecks of the North East Coast (The): Volume Two, Tempus, Gloucestershire. p. 147, Ian T. Spokes Wreck Database; National Monuments Record (1368222 & 908753); Richard and Bridget Larn 1997 Shipwreck index of the British Isles, volume 3. The east coast of England : Essex, Suffolk, Norfolk, Lincolnshire, Yorkshire, County Durham, Northumberland, Section 6, County Durham (CF); 1989 Lloyd's war losses: the Second World War 3 September-14 August 1945, Volumes I and II, Page(s)28; Dave Shaw and Barry Winfield 1988 Dive north east : a Diver guide, Page(s)57; Hydrographic Office wreck index 09-MAR-1993; Maritime and Coastguard Agency: Receiver of Wreck Amnesty (23-Jan to 24-Apr-2001)