Wilfred Claxton and
ANOR of Ramsgate
19?? - 19??
Vessel Type: Aux Cutter (Motorised circa 1920)
Built: 1909 at Looe, Cornwall.
L 45.5'. B 14.3'. D 7.3'. 21grt. 45 hp. 4cyl, type 4.V.R.B.M.R, diesel engine by Ruston Hornsby.
Official No: 135797
Skippers report of damage sustained on the 31st March 1951.
"Whilst on the fishing grounds off Margate, wind at gale force, with rough sea, the "DAWN" was proceeding to Ramsgate with sails reefed, turned round and returned to Margate Roads for shelter.
Whilst off Broadstairs, the strong wind blew out the mainsail, the sail was re-stowed and vessel proceeded under power to Ramsgate, arriving 1st. April, 1951. On the 2nd. April the damaged sail was stripped out, and on the 3rd. April, 1951, the vessel proceeded to sea. The weather was calm and the vessel did not use the her sails, returned to Ramsgate Harbour same evening. On the 4th. April, left Ramsgate Harbour and proceeded to Margate Fishing grounds, wind moderate, slight swell.
Whilst off North Foreland, the spare sail was set to steady the vessel whilst fishing. The “DAWN” carried on fishing until midnight on the 5th. April, when the main mast broke and hung in the rigging. The vessel returned to Ramsgate Harbour, under power, arriving 5.15 a.m., 6th. April, 1951.
The damage is stated to have been caused by the mainsail blowing out during the gale on the 31st. March, 1951, straining the mainmast which subsequently parted and broke on the 5th. April, 1951.”
(During examination of the damage, it was noted that the mainmast showed a clean break in way of the fore stay securing band, the mast wedges were found to be strained and slack and two wood double sheave blocks, broken.)
Skippers report of damage sustained on the 26th October 1953.
“On Monday October 26th. we left Ramsgate Harbour at 12.15.p.m. and proceeded to the fishing ground off Margate Sands, reaching there at about 1.20.p.m., we then stopped and lowered our fishing gear and while doing so the vessel payed off astern and the net ran aft with the tide and got round the propeller.
We tried by all means to clear the net but could not do so, and as we could not do so, and as we could not use the engine and as we were on a lee shore and the wind was becoming stronger all the while, we got the sails ready and set them with the intention of sailing back to Ramsgate.
We got under weigh with the wind blowing from S/S.E. and increasing, and when we reached the open sea at the Foreland found it was blowing near gale force.
When off the Foreland, the foresail canvas was blown off the head rope and flapping loose, so we lowered the sail and refastened it to the headrope as best we could and hoisted it again, we continued sailing for about half an hour when the sail was burst by the wind and became almost useless.
About a quarter of an hour after the foresail gave out, the main sail split from the gaff down to the first reef, but as we could do nothing to remedy this we carried on.
After sailing under these conditions, we eventually reached Ramsgate Harbour at approx. 8 p.m. without assistance, and berthed alongside the wall of the Outer Harbour with the aid of a motor boat, as the wind was still blowing almost a gale."