S.T. Elise FD164

Additional information courtesy of Ron Young (Shipwrecks of the North East Coast) and the late Bill Butland


Official Number: 124697
Yard Number: 272
Completed: 1907
Gross Tonnage: 238.91
Net Tonnage: 72.40
Length: 126.5 ft
Breadth: 22.0 ft
Depth: 11.6 ft
Built: J Duthie Torry Shipbuilding Co, Aberdeen
Engine: 400ihp T.3-cyl by W V Lidgerwood, Coatbridge
Boiler: Wallsend Slipway & Engineering Co Ltd, Wallsend-on-Tyne


9.11.1907: Launched by John Duthie Torry Shipbuilding Co, Aberdeen (Yd.No.272) for John Millington Jackson, St. Anne’s-on-the-Sea & Walter Henry Dickenson, Fleetwood (64/64 joint owners) as ELISE.
23.12.1907: Registered at Fleetwood (FD164).
23.12.1907: Walter Henry Dickenson designated managing owner.
23.12.1907: Vessel mortgaged (64/64) to The London City & Midland Bank Ltd, London (A).
12.1907: Completed.
30.4.1909: Mortgage (A) discharged.
31.5.1909: Sold to John Millington Jackson, St. Anne’s-on-the-Sea.
2.6.1909: Mortgaged to The London City & Midland Bank Ltd, London (B).
3.6.1907: Thomas Frederick Kelsall, designated manager.
31.5.1912: Mortgaged to William Deacons Bank Ltd, London (C).
3.6.1912: Mortgage (B) discharged.
14.2.1913: Sold to J. Marr & Son Ltd, Fleetwood.
18.2.1913: James H. Marr designated manager.
18.2.1913: Mortgage (C) transferred to J. Marr & Son Ltd.
1.1.1914: Tonnage altered to 98.73 net under provision of Merchant Shipping Act 1907.
6.1915: Requisitioned for war service as a minesweeper (1-6pdr) (Ad.No.1622).
11.11.1916: James A. Robertson designated manager.
16.10.1917: In the afternoon, left Marsten, Norway escorting a west bound coal convoy to Lerwick, with destroyer MARY ROSE (P.No.J360) (Lt Cdr Fox RN convoy commander) and later joined by destroyer STRONGBOW (P.No.G44) (Lt Cdr Edward Brooke RN), armed trawler P. FANNON (Ad.No.1816) (A349) and twelve merchant ships, two British, one Belgian, one Danish, five Norwegians and three Swedish.
17.10.1917: In early morning when some 65 miles east of Lerwick met up with German minelaying light cruisers SMS BRUMMER and SMS BREMSE disguised as RN warships. In poor visibility, STRONGBOW at rear of convoy sighted and challenged the cruisers several times before realising that they were German and going to action stations. BRUMMER opened fire and STRONGBOW was hit and main steam pipe fractured, immobilised she was hit again and at 7.30am. the order to abandon ship was given and destroyer foundered at 9.30am. The convoy was attacked again and nine Scandinavian vessels sunk. ELISE engaged enemy with 6pdr whilst manoeuvring to pick up STRONGBOW survivors which including the wounded Lt Cdr Brooke, but forced to withdraw out of range when shelled by both cruisers. In the meantime MARY ROSE having gone ahead to meet the east bound convoy turned back to engage and when some 2,00yds from the cruisers the German gunners got the range and she was hit and heavily damaged. Abandoned and foundered quickly with heavy loss of life. Cruised for four hours looking for survivors and picked up a further twenty-nine Norwegians and Danes and brought into harbour. Only three steamers, two British and one Belgian, escorted by the P. FANNON survived. MARY ROSE survivors in a raft with Sub Lieut. Freeman managed to reach the the Norwegian coast near Bergen.
22.9.1918: On patrol NE Coast, ‘…blown up 2 miles North east Saint Mary’s Lighthouse at 1722’. ‘… presumed torpedoed. No survivors one body found’. ‘Approx position 55.6.30N 1.26W’. (Possible. Struck mine laid by enemy submarine 2 miles off St. Mary’s Lighthouse, Whitley Bay. Sank immediately. OR torpedoed by U-boat as above (not authenticated, no claims made).
22.9.1918: Ceased to be on Admiralty Charter.
9.10.1918: Fleetwood registry closed “ Vessel lost whilst on Admiralty service 22nd September 1918 “.

(Lost – Ty/Skipper Henry James RNR; Charles W. Clarke, 2nd Hand; James Low & Harry Painter, Enginemen; Septimus Bagshaw, Ldg Deckhand; William Smith, AB; Cecil R. Sharman, Seaman; Frederick Barnes, James W. Burnett, William Hearing, Stephen Sheriff & William Simpson, Deckhands; David Armitage & Myles Fitzpatrick, Trimmers.)

Notes: Today, the wreck lies on hard sand and stone at a depth of 24m. The engine room has collapsed in on itself although the bow section is still intact, minus its gun. The winch lies some 50m away and there is wreckage scattered around.

19/12/2008: Page published. 4 revisions since then.
17/12/2014: Information updated.
23/06/2016: Information updated.
07/06/2020: Updated information.