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Strandings & Sinkings: shipwrecks in Manx waters

By Ray Stanfield

Shipwrecks are always fascinating.  For an island like the Isle of Man whose history is so much bound up with the sea, anything which affects shipping affects a large number of people.

Much of the Manx coast is rocky and currents can be tricky, so the sea around Mann is something of a ship’s graveyard.  It would be impossible to include all the ships which came to grief around the island, so Strandings & Sinkings approaches the subject from a slightly different angle.  It concentrates on the photographs.

Unsurprisingly, pictures of wrecks are not particularly common.  If your vessel is sinking beneath you you have better things to do than pose for a selfie, and the weather is unlikely to be bright and sunny.  However, the book gathers together a remarkable collection.  There are drone pictures of wrecks hidden in secluded coves, underwater photographs of boats lying on the seabed and several of rescues in progress.

These ships were mute witnesses to great heroism (and occasionally great idiocy), and their stories provide an insight into the lives of those who crewed them.  And not all the boats featured were truly wrecked.  There was no saving some, but many of the boats were raised, repaired and refloated.

Strandings & Sinkings covers nearly 200 years of shipwrecks, including that of Racehorse, the wreck which prompted William Hillary to found what became the RNLI.  As the RNLI celebrates its 200th anniversary this year, Strandings & Sinkings shows why an organisation devoted to saving lives at sea is so necessary.

Welcome to Loaghtan Books

As a reader have you ever felt that the books you really want to own are just too expensive?

So did we!

To rectify that we at Loaghtan Books keep our prices as low as possible and the quality of our books as high as we can.

We are a small but growing independent publishing house publishing books about the Isle of Man, the UK and other parts of the world. In fact the sort of books we want to read but can’t find elsewhere.

We don’t restrict ourselves to specialising in certain subjects, preferring to base our books on what readers tell us interest them. Whatever the subject each publication is researched thoroughly and imaginatively illustrated. Our books aim equally at education, illumination and entertainment or, to put it another way, learning and fun.

Some of our books are based on unique historic material; manuscripts and photographs not previously published to which we have added commentary so that our readers can understand allusions in the text not obvious to modern eyes.

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01624 818292


Caardee, Dreemskerry Hill,
Maughold, Isle of Man, IM7 1BE