Waterbodies & Maritime => Wrecks & Disasters => Topic started by: HERB COLLECTOR on November 01, 2011, 21:51:59

Title: HMS London, lost 1665
Post by: HERB COLLECTOR on November 01, 2011, 21:51:59
From the diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 8 March 1665.
This morning is brought me to the office the sad news of 'the London' in which Sir J. Lawsons were all bringing her from Chatham to the Hope, and thence he was to go to sea in her, but a little a'this side of the bouy of the Nower, she suddenly blew up. About 24 [men] and a women that were in the round-house and coach saved. The rest, being above 300, drowned; The ship breaking all in pieces, with 80 pieces of brass ordnance. She lies sunk, with her round-house above water. Sir J. Lawson hath a great loss in this of so many good chosen men and many relations among them. I went to the 'change, where the news taken very much to heart.

Saturday 11 March 1665.
This day returned Sir W. Batten and Sir J. Minnes from Lee roade, [Leigh road, Essex] where they have been to see the wrecke of 'the London' out of which, they say, the guns may be got, but the hull of her will be wholly lost, as not being capable of being weighed.

HMS London was a 3 deck second rate 60 gun warship, launched at Chatham in 1656. She formed part of the squadron sent to collect Charles ll from the Netherlands to return him to the throne in 1660.

Naval historians have suggested two theories as to the cause of the explosion.
Richard Ender suggests that the blast could have been caused by an accumulation of methane gas from rotting organic matter that had built up in the ships bilges.
"Records show that a Lieutenant accidentally fell into the bottom of the hold [of the Lennox, 1690] and when the crew climbed down to rescue him they were rendered "in a manner dead by the stench." They were unconscious of course, it is not the smell that makes you unconscious, it is the methane, when you have that concentration of methane all it would take is someone being sent down there with a lantern to set it off. The powder room is in the hold as well."
Charles Trollope, an authority on naval ordnance from the period, believes that the explosion was caused by the "crew reloading old cartridge papers with gunpowder in the magazine, a common practice. When they stooped using secondhand cartridge papers there was no more explosions. Then again it could have been the two things together."

The wreck site was rediscovered in 2008 and designated a protected site in Oct of that year.
Contrary to a BBC programme, Thames Shipwrecks, June 2009, and some newspaper reports it is not a complete hull resting on the sea bed! but two areas of wreckage some 400 metres apart, 1 3/4 miles south of the tip of Southend pier.

In April this year 2 men were arrested in connection with the theft of items from the wreck site.
Title: Re: HMS London, lost 1665
Post by: HERB COLLECTOR on July 27, 2014, 22:57:56
Divers have recovered a series of objects from the ship called the London, which exploded off the coast of Southend in 1665.
The haul so far includes pewter spoons, coins and navigational dividers.
A project spokesman said: "The artefacts we can recover may be similar in scope to those...from the Mary Rose, but 120 years later in date."

More @ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-essex-28466331 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-essex-28466331)
Title: Re: HMS London, lost 1665
Post by: HERB COLLECTOR on August 13, 2015, 21:08:51
One of the gun carriages has been raised from the wreck of HMS London, complete with the tools and implements that the gunner needed to fire the gun.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-33901779 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-33901779)
Title: Re: HMS London, lost 1665
Post by: Bilgerat on August 14, 2015, 16:59:35
The gun carriage is so well preserved because it's made of elm, which is really heavy, dense wood. One of the few types of wood which doesn't float in fact.