On Sunday 17th June 1956 Red Funnel’s paddle steamer Bournemouth Queen ran down and sliced in half a sailing dinghy off Fawley in Southampton Water on her scheduled run on her usual service connecting Southampton, Ryde and Southsea.
Bournemouth Queen’s master, Capt G Hinch, said:
We were passing Fawley Jetty when I saw the 14ft sailing dinghy crossing from port to starboard. I ordered the man at the wheel to port his wheel to pass under the dinghy’s stern. But instead of keeping on his course the chap steering the dinghy put his helm down and tried to get over on the other tack. Unfortunately we did not have time to clear him.
The three occupants of the dinghy who were all soldiers were picked up by a launch from Fawley unharmed.
Capt Hinch ended by saying “It is the first accident I have had in 48 years’ sea-going.”
Kingswear Castle returned to service in 2023 after the first part of a major rebuild which is designed to set her up for the next 25 years running on the River Dart. The Paddle Steamer Kingswear Castle Trust is now fund raising for the second phase of the rebuild. You can read more about the rebuilds and how you can help if you can here.
This article was first published on 17th June 2021.