On Tuesday 28th August 1956 Monarch rescued two men from a small dinghy, called Dumbo, off the Old Harry Rocks in Poole Bay whilst on passage on her regular route between Swanage and Bournemouth.
Monarch’s master, Capt Harry Defrates, said that both men were almost naked, shivering with the cold and frightened “So frightened that I don’t think they will go to sea again in a small boat for a long time.”
Both men were given food and drink by the crew and a couple of passengers gave them mackintoshes to try to warm them up. Capt Defrates went on to say “They had no sail and seemed to have only one oar so I think they would have lost their lives unless they had been spotted.”
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 28th August 2019.