Penarth Dock, South Wales - 150 years - the heritage and legacy  
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Volume Three - The Pontoon Era - The Great War 1914 - 18 . . .

1915 - Another sad loss of the war, after sailing from Penarth, was the 'Strathnairn' owned by Burrell & Son of Glasgow. She was a freighter of 4,336 tons, built in 1906 by A. Rodger & Co., at Port Glasgow. On the 15th June 1915 she was torpedoed by the German submarine U.22 when 25 miles north by east of Bishop Rock on passage from Penarth for Archangel, loaded with Welsh steam coal. Her captain and 21 of her crew were lost. [144] 

1917 - Baby Submarine - Dutch Steamer Carrying Coal to Canary Islands Stopped by U-Boat of New Type - New York - March 3. - 'Officers of the Dutch steamship 'Domberg', in today from Penarth, Wales, via the Canary Islands, told of meeting what they called a "baby" German submarine on January 31, the day before the inauguration of unrestricted warfare.

"We left Penarth with coal for Las Palmas on January 30," said one of the ship's officers. "The next day, when 45 miles southeast of the Scilly Islands, we were stopped by a submarine firing two shells across our bows. We sent a small boat to the submarine with our papers."

After inspecting the papers, the submarine commander returned them with the remark : "You were lucky to have met us today. We will let you go this time, but don't show up around these waters again."

The submarine, according to the ship's officers, was unlike any they had ever seen. It was so small that there was hardly deck space upon which to stand. They believe the craft was a new type, perfected for blockade purpose.' - The Daily Colonist - [689] [684] - 4th March 1917.

The following is an interesting entry in the diary of Edward Nicholl, a former director of the Penarth Pontoon and Slipway Company who at the time of WWI was a Commander in the Royal Naval Reserve and was later knighted for his services :

'Reported to me that a man had been observed on a certain mud hopper intently examining, through binoculars, the defences at Lavernock and Penarth. At once communicated with the police, and a little later one of the crew of the mud hopper, who admitted he was a German, was arrested. When he was brought before the magistrates he claimed that he was naturalised. He was discharged and, I am told, almost immediately rejoined the hopper.' - [690] [684]


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150 years of Penarth Dock History and Heritage

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