Wednesday, 13 October 2010

In Memory Of The Lifeboat Gem 13/10/2010

Today was the centenary of the wrecking of the St Davids Lifeboat Gem and the loss of 3 of her crew. The Gem had been launched in the early hours of October 13th 1910 following the sighting of distress flares in Ramsey Sound.

The 12 man crew of the Gem took an hour to row the mile across the Sound in a NE gale and very rough seas to the Ketch Democrat. With great effort the 3 man crew of the Democrat were taken on board the Gem.

The crew of the Gem were unable to row against the wind and tide  as a result the lifeboat was subsequently swept onto the Bitches and wrecked. Fifteen men managed to clamber onto the Bitches where they clung on for 12 hours before being rescued by 2 local boats. Sadly 3 of the lifeboat crew Henry Rowlands, James Price and the Coxswain John Stephens were drowned.

There were a number of events to mark the anniversary with both St Davids Lifeboats laying a wreath at the bitches reef, a service was held at St Davids Cathedral and the above plaque being unveiled in the Cross Square.

A very poignant reminder of the tremendous work that the RNLI have done and still do today.

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