Classic Luftwaffe yacht in embarrassing grounding

Sea Scamp on the rocks - photo by Owen Buggy
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Oops! A 41ft classic yacht being sailed by a non-profit British club as a sail training vessel had some embarrassing moments this week when she went aground, firmly, on the Isle of Wight.

The 1936 Bermudan-rigged Sea Scamp was circumnavigating the Isle when she hit Quarry Ledge, just east of Thorness Bay.


RNLI lifeboats went to the aid of the six people aboard. Crews then tried to stabilise the yacht, but had to wait until midnight to refloat it.

They then escorted it back into Cowes where it is now being inspected to see if it can safely return to its base at Shamrock Quay, Southampton.

Originally named Zeisig, Sea Scamp was built in 1936 for the Luftwaffe by boatyard Abeking and Rasmussen near Bremen in Germany, and for eight years was used for navigation training and recreation by the Luffwaffe.

At the end of the war the British forces found some 200 yachts in German harbours, and took them as prizes of war. Called the 'windfall' yachts, they were sailed to England and distributed to service units all over the world. Thousands of British servicemen were trained to sail in them.

Among the yachts thus 'liberated' by the British forces were Sea Scamp, but since 1984 has been owned and sailed by the Sea Scamp Syndicate.
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