Fascinating drone footage exposes shipwrecks scattered across Lowestoft waters
PUBLISHED: 09:10 28 March 2019 | UPDATED: 16:24 28 March 2019
These shots offer fascinating insight into the dozens of shipwrecks scattered across the waterways of Lowestoft and Oulton Broad.
Taken by Lowestoft firefighter Ben Horne using a drone, the images show ruined vessels sitting at the foot of Lake Lothing - many of them untouched for decades.
Across two flights, Mr Horne captured footage showing dilapidated trawlers, wartime drifters and research boats, before beginning an extensive research process to find out more about these symbols of days gone by.
The eventual result was a video focusing on four of the beached vessels, which has already generated widespread local interest.
“I’m Lowestoft born and bred so doing this was very important to me,” said Mr Horne, who has been using his drone for three years. “These boats are a big part of local history.
“The Yellowtail, for example - I can remember that from when I was young. It laid at Oulton Broad for years before the road bridge was built and I was fascinated by it as a child.”
Mr Horne’s finished product tells the tale of Yellowtail, Platessa, Probe and Eadwine, each with her own unique story and purpose.
Built in 1945, Yellowtail once operated as a sidewinder trawler in Lowestoft but has been anchored since 1976. Beside it can be found Platessa, used as a fisheries research vessel for 21 years before being sold into private ownership and sinking in the Hamilton dock in 1975.
Probe was built in 1942 and, after being sold to Norway for use as a hospital ship, returned to Lowestoft to look for North Sea oil and gas reserves. Eadwine, the oldest of the four, served as defence vessel in the First World War and a patrol drifter during the Second World War.
But while there were once more than 100 shipwrecked vessels on the north and south shores, many have been broken up and moved on in recent years as surrounding land is redeveloped.
“There were about 120 abandoned steam drifters and sailing vessels at one stage,” added Mr Horne. “A lot have disappeared over the years due to redevelopment in the area.
“It’s been nice to collate the information because there is some really interesting history behind these boats. A lot of people nowadays pass them off as a few boring old sunken ships, but they’re more than that.”