Local RNLI crews mark the 70th Anniversary of the MV Princess Victoria

Lifeboats News Release

RNLI crews from Portpatrick and Stranraer lifeboat stations attended a memorial service to mark 70 years since the MV Princess Victoria Disaster. It remains the greatest maritime disaster in UK waters since World War Two.

Man lays wreath at Princess Victoria memorial

RNLI/Jeanette Hardy

Jonathon Pearson lays a wreath on behalf of Portpatrick RNLI
On the 31 January 1953, the Stranraer to Larne ferry - the MV Princess Victoria - sank off the coast of County Down during the Great Storm. All women and children were lost.

Crews from Portpatrick and Donaghadee RNLI Lifeboat Stations were involved in the search and rescue operations, enduring many hours at sea in horrendous storm conditions. The limited communication of Morse code on the Princess Victoria at the time resulted in delays locating the stricken vessel. Only 44 survived.

Communities in and around Portpatrick and Stranraer came together at 11am at the Princess Victoria monument in Agnew Park, Stranraer to remember all those who were lost. Crews from Portpatrick and Stranraer RNLI Lifeboat Stations were in attendance and laid memorial wreaths at the Victoria Monument.

A new MV Princess Victoria Exhibition was later unveiled at a Civic Reception held at Stranraer Millenium Centre. Entitled ‘Our Roughest Storm and Strongest Anchors’, the exhibition explores the Princess Victoria story of loss, bravery, love and community and features a photograph of the Portpatrick RNLI lifeboat volunteer crew at the time when the MV Princess Victoria disaster occurred.

Notes to editors

· Portpatrick lifeboat station has been operating since 1877. To learn more about the lifeboat station go to: https://rnli.org/find-my-nearest/lifeboat-stations/portpatrick-lifeboat-station


RNLI media contacts

Jeanette Hardy, Lifeboat Press Officer, [email protected]

Natasha Bennett, RNLI Regional Media Officer for Scotland, 07826 900639, [email protected]

Martin Macnamara, RNLI Regional Media Manager for Scotland, 07920 365929, [email protected]


RNLI Press Office, 01202 336789

Wreaths at the Princess Victoria Memorial

RNLI/Jeanette Hardy

Many wreaths were laid including those from RNLI Portpatrick and Stranraer
Eight male lifeboat crew

RNLI/Jeanette Hardy

RNLI Portpatrick Crew at the time of the Princess Victoria Disaster

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