NO3725 : The standing stone that isn't

taken 12 years ago, near to Bottomcraig, Fife, Great Britain

The standing stone that isn't
The standing stone that isn't
As you approach it, this looks very much like a curvaceous standing stone, but on closer examination it turns out to be metal. It is in fact one of the propeller blades of the White Star Line's RMS Oceanic, a sister ship to the Titanic. Launched at Harland and Wolf in Belfast in January 1899 she plied the North Atlantic for 14 years. Then, on the outbreak of the Great War, the Admiralty took her over and converted her into an armed merchant cruiser. Sadly, her Naval career lasted barely a fortnight. After a difference of opinion between her joint Merchant Navy and Royal Navy captains about the correct course to sail (joint captains; surely a recipe for disaster?) she ran aground on Hoevdi Grund, a reef off Foula Island in Shetland and sticking fast she was abandoned. A gale then blew up and when it had passed the Oceanic had vanished from view. The wreck lay undisturbed in the Shaalds of Foula for decades, protected by the vicious and supposedly undiveable waters of the Shaalds until Simon Martin and his colleague Alec Crawford of DeepTek based here at Kilburns, read of the Oceanic while visiting Shetland and decided to investigate her. Soon they set about recovering the tons of valuable metals lying on the sea bed in some of the most difficult wreck-diving conditions that can be encountered. The propeller blades are here in Fife and the ship's bell is in the Shetland Museum in Lerwick.
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NO3725, 21 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Monday, 10 September, 2007   (more nearby)
Tuesday, 25 September, 2007
Industrial heritage > Industrial heritage   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NO 376 252 [100m precision]
WGS84: 56:24.9097N 3:0.7201W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NO 375 251
View Direction
East-northeast (about 67 degrees)
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