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Captain's Log

February 2010

Help Save Dunkirk Little Ship Lucy Lavers

Help Save Dunkirk Little Ship 'Lucy Lavers'

Help Save Dunkirk Little Ship 'Lucy Lavers'

This year sees the 70th anniversary of the Dunkirk evacuation, codenamed Operation Dynamo, when in 1940 with World War II less than one year old 338,266 soldiers were rescued by the hastily-assembled fleet of 850 boats. During this dramatic evacuation of Dunkirk, 126 merchant seamen lost their lives. In May this year, in remembrance of Operation Dynamo, this historic event of WWII will be marked with a flotilla of up to 50 of these extraordinary boats who will sail once again to Dunkirk accompanied by the Royal Navy.

Previously, Nauticalia customers have helped raise more than £65,000 for nautical charities including the RNLI, HMS Victory, Cutty Sark, Gipsy Moth, King George’s Fund for Sailors, and most recently the Mission for Seafarers – from personal donations and royalties we pay on product sales.

To commemorate the 70th anniversary of Operation Dynamo, we are proud to be supporting the Dunkirk Little Ships Restoration Trust (DLSRT). The charity has two aims, first to acquire Dunkirk Little Ships in danger of neglect and destruction and move them to a place of safety, and second to encourage the boatbuilding and conservation skills necessary to restore them.

Your donations will help restore Lucy Lavers, an ex-RNLI lifeboat that served in Operation Dynamo and the evacuation of Dunkirk between 26 May and 4 June 1940.

Built in early 1940 by Groves & Gutteridge on the Isle of Wight, Lucy Lavers had only just arrived at her station in Aldeburgh, Suffolk, when she was called into service. Her exceptionally shallow draught of only 2' meant that she (and 18 other lifeboats) were ideal for rescuing British troops from Dunkirk's beaches.

Lucy Lavers returned to service in Aldeburgh, where she is credited with saving seven lives. Following retirement from the RNLI in 1968, she became a pilot boat in the Channel Islands, a fishing boat and a dive boat before eventually being stripped to restore another vessel. The hull, still in good condition is now in the hands of the DLSRT in Southampton. You can donate online, or call us on 01932 235550, and we'll pass it straight on.

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