SHIPS A Story Of Glory … (No. 38)

Posted by on 3. April 2012

Charles Lightoller

Lightholler of „Titanic“ ...


... and his yacht from Dunkirk

„Sundowner“ is a motor yacht, formerly owned by Charles Lightoller, 2nd Officer of  the „Titanic“ – and a survivor of the iceberg desaster in 1912! On 31 May 1940, she was requisitioned by the Admiralty to sail to Dunkirk to assist in the evacuation of British troops, fleeing masswise from the Nazis. Lightoller, aged 66 and retired, volunteered to sail across the Channel, took a total of 130 soldiers on board („Sundowner“ is 52 feet or 17 m long only!) and returned to Ramsgate, avoiding fire from enemy aircraft through evasive manoeuvres. Lightoller died in 1952, and his wife Sylvia continued to cruise in „Sundowner“, taking the helm when she led the Armada on the 25th Anniversary of Dunkirk in 1965. After passing through several other owners, the yacht was purchased by the East Kent Maritime Trust, to be restored and exibited at the Ramsgate Maritime Museum. Go there, the next time you are in England, touch her lightly and think of Lightoller, a hero of maritime history

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