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Wreck of the Helvetia, Rhossili Bay

Worms Head and the remains of the wreck of the Helvetia at Rhossili Bay, Gower, Wales. The Helvetia was one of 2 ships that ran into problems during a severe gale on 1st November 1889. Heavily laden with timber they were blown by the south-easterly wind  down the coast. One ship was lucky and made shelter at Lundy Island. The other, the barque Helvetia was swept out and struck the Helwick Sands, in the heavy swell it freed itself but was swept into the shallow water of Rhossili bay where it dropped anchor. The captain thought to wait out the storm but the wind changed direction and the ship dragged its anchor. The captain and crew abandoned ship and were rescued by the coastguard that evening. In the morning, the wreck of the Helvetia was seen in the bay surrounded by the 500tons of wood it carried. At each end of the 3 mile bay is a small island. To the south is Worms Head and to the north is Burry Holmes. Both can be accessed at low water via a short causeway. The remains of another wreck, the paddle steamer The City of Bristol can be found at the base of the cliffs. It was wrecked in 1840 with the loss of 27 passengers and crew.

Copyright: Richard Hope
Type: Spherical
Resolution: 16608x8304
Taken: 08/09/2015
Uploaded: 08/09/2015


Tags: rhossili; helvetia; barque; shipwreck; gower; swansea; wales; uk; 1889; 1840; 2015; city of bristol; paddle steamer; sea; beach; island; coast; worms head; burry holms; anchor; wood; storm; gale; coastguard
More About Wales

Wales (Cymru in the Welsh language) is part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.  The major cities are Cardiff, Swansea, Newport and Bangor.  The city of St. Davids is the smallest city in the UK with a population around 2000.  Wales itself has a population of around 3 million.  The Welsh language is spoken by around 20% of the population.

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