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Empire Gunner

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NPRN274910
Map ReferenceSM65SE
Grid ReferenceSM6896753698
Unitary (Local) AuthorityMaritime
Old CountyMaritime
CommunityMaritime
Type Of SiteWRECK
PeriodModern
Description
The wreck believed to be the EMPIRE GUNNER lies with its keel orientated 045/225 degrees. It is approximately 80m long and has a height of 9m above the seabed.

Event and Historical Information:
The EMPIRE GUNNER was a steel-hulled steamship built by Grangemouth Dockyard Company Ltd in 1906. Technical and configuration specifications are given as 4492gt; 370ft (112m) length x 52ft breadth; screw propulsion powered by four steam boilers linked to triple expansion engine. The ship had begun its service life as the STRATHEARN owned by Burrell & Son, Glasgow, but was sold to General Maritime Trust Ltd in 1919. The ship's name was changed to CONSTANTINOS when it was sold in 1924 to P C Lemos, Greece. PC Lemos changed the ship's name to KOSTANTIS LEMOS in 1925. In 1928, the ship was sold to Constantine & Lemos, Greece and the name changed to DANAOS. In 1939, the ship was sold to Genoa, to Soc.di Nav.Polena, and renamed MOSCARDIN. On 10 June 1940, the ship was captured at sea and incorporated into the Ministry of War Transport and put into service as the EMPIRE GUNNER. The ship was carrying 6,300tons of iron ore when it was attacked by German aircraft on 6 September 1941 at the southern end of St George's Channel. The ship was abandoned and sank early the next day at 4am. A non-submarine contact, believed to be a rocky outcrop 360ft long and 60ft high, was reported in July 1945 and again in December 1945. HMS BEAGLE confirm the presence of a wreck in May 1980.

Sources include:
Goddard, T, 1983, Pembrokeshire Shipwrecks, pg118
Larn and Larn Shipwreck Database 2002
Mitchell, W H and Sawyer, L A, 1990, The Empire Ships (2nd Ed)
UK Hydrographic Office Wrecks and Obstructions Database. ? Crown Copyright and database rights. Reproduced by permission of the Controller of Her Majesty's Stationery Office and the UK Hydrographic Office (www.ukho.gov.uk)

Maritime Officer, RCAHMW, July 2009.