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Otranto: Machir Bay, Islay, Atlantic

Steamship (20th Century), Trawler

Site Name Otranto: Machir Bay, Islay, Atlantic

Classification Steamship (20th Century), Trawler

Alternative Name(s) Ortranto; Orsay Island; Ortranto; Machair Bay; North Channel; Otranto; Hms Otranto

Canmore ID 102481

Site Number NR16SE 8001

NGR NR 18576 61707

NGR Description NR c. 185 617

Datum WGS84 - Lat/Long

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/102481

Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2018.

Administrative Areas

  • Council Argyll And Bute
  • Parish Maritime - Argyll And Bute
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Maritime
  • Former County Not Applicable

Archaeology Notes

NR16SE 8001 c. 185 617

N55 46 W6 29.3

NLO: Machir Bay [name: NR 197 626].

Formerly entered as Site no. 9110 at cited location NR 1856 6170 (N55 46 W6 29.25).

(Photographs, location map, transits and drawings of armament reproduced).

S Blackburn 1986.

Quality of fix = PA

Horizontal Datum = OGB

General water depth = 16

Circumstances of Loss Details

-----------------------------

The ORTRANTO was built in 1909. It drifted ashore and was totally wrecked following collision with P&O liner KASHMIR. It was owned at the time of loss by the Orient Steam Navigation Co. The vessel had been taken over as an auxiliary cruiser and armed. It was being used to transport American troops to France. Many lives were lost.

Source: Dictionary of Disasters at Sea.

The rescue of most of survivors was done by HMS MOUNSEY.

Surveying Details

-----------------------------

16 October 1918. The wreck's position was given as 6 miles N of Orsay Island.

Report by Commanding Officer, HMS MOUNSEY.

4 September 1967. Only the propellor, prop shaft and engine block remain. Mr Jessop wishes to purchase this wreck. The Ministry of Transport will try and obtain the exact position from Mr Jessop.

Report from a telephone communication via the Ministry of Transport.

14 August 1978. The wreck was located in Machir Bay, at 55 46 00N, 006 29 00W approximately, by sub aqua divers. It contains motor bikes, army vehicles, and locomotives.

Report by Staff Diving Officer, FOSNI.

17 November 1982. The wreck is badly broken up and spread over an area of about 100 square metres. The deepest part lies in about 16 metres, due west of the old radar tower. The boiler is the highest part coming to within 9 metres of the surface. The site is littered with live shells. The site is owned by Tim Epps, Port Charlotte Hotel, Islay.

Report by Excersie Scoobie Scoop, 3-17 September 1982.

(The position given is 55 46 00N, 006 29 15W approximately).

Hydrographic Office 1995.

(Classified as armed merchant cruiser of steel construction, carrying army stores: date of loss cited as 5 October 1918). Otranto: this vessel drifted ashore in Machair [Machir] Bay after being in collision (Kashmir). Capt. Davidson.

Registration: London. Built 1909. 12124grt. Length: 160m. Beam: 20m.

(Location of loss cited as N55 45.77 W6 28.67).

I G Whittaker 1998.

The published photographs (taken both before and after conversion for war service) illustrate a large passenger liner with a near-straight stem and cruiser stern. The greater part of her length is taken up by a lengthy superstructure, which has two funnels, numerous lifeboats and a small bridge. Masts forward and aft indicate the locations of two holds forward and, possbly, a third aft. There is no focsle structure as such, but the ship has a small poop.

Information from RCAHMS (RJCM), 23 July 2003.

S Blackburn 1986.

Material reported under RoW amnesty (2001):

A146 1 porthole ring, 18ins diameter (name cited as Otranto, Machir Bay, Islay)

A252 1 14cm brass nut (from seabed, possibly from this wreck).

NMRS, MS/829/33.

Material reported under RoW amnesty (2001):

A1385 iron nut and bolt: from seabed

A1791 1 telephone, 1 shellcase: from seabed

A2883 1 shellcase: from seabed

A3708 1 hand guard of sword: from seabed

A4274 2 portholes, 6 shell cases: from seabed.

NMRS, MS/829/35.

The location assigned to this record is essentially tentative.

Information from RCAHMS (RJCM), 12 February 2010.

Activities

Loss (5 October 1918)

(Photographs, location map, transits and drawings of armament reproduced).

S Blackburn 1986.

(Classified as armed merchant cruiser of steel construction, carrying army stores: date of loss cited as 5 October 1918). Otranto: this vessel drifted ashore in Machair [Machir] Bay after being in collision (Kashmir). Capt. Davidson.

Registration: London. Built 1909. 12124grt. Length: 160m. Beam: 20m.

(Location of loss cited as N55 45.77 W6 28.67).

I G Whittaker 1998.

Evidence Of Loss (1995)

Quality of fix = PA

Horizontal Datum = OGB

General water depth = 16

Circumstances of Loss Details

-----------------------------

The ORTRANTO was built in 1909. It drifted ashore and was totally wrecked following collision with P&O liner KASHMIR. It was owned at the time of loss by the Orient Steam Navigation Co. The vessel had been taken over as an auxiliary cruiser and armed. It was being used to transport American troops to France. Many lives were lost.

Source: Dictionary of Disasters at Sea.

The rescue of most of survivors was done by HMS MOUNSEY.

Surveying Details

-----------------------------

16 October 1918. The wreck's position was given as 6 miles N of Orsay Island.

Report by Commanding Officer, HMS MOUNSEY.

4 September 1967. Only the propellor, prop shaft and engine block remain. Mr Jessop wishes to purchase this wreck. The Ministry of Transport will try and obtain the exact position from Mr Jessop.

Report from a telephone communication via the Ministry of Transport.

14 August 1978. The wreck was located in Machir Bay, at 55 46 00N, 006 29 00W approximately, by sub aqua divers. It contains motor bikes, army vehicles, and locomotives.

Report by Staff Diving Officer, FOSNI.

17 November 1982. The wreck is badly broken up and spread over an area of about 100 square metres. The deepest part lies in about 16 metres, due west of the old radar tower. The boiler is the highest part coming to within 9 metres of the surface. The site is littered with live shells. The site is owned by Tim Epps, Port Charlotte Hotel, Islay.

Report by Excersie Scoobie Scoop, 3-17 September 1982.

(The position given is 55 46 00N, 006 29 15W approximately).

Hydrographic Office 1995.

Evidence Of Loss (2001)

Material reported under RoW amnesty (2001):

A146 1 porthole ring, 18ins diameter (name cited as Otranto, Machir Bay, Islay)

A252 1 14cm brass nut (from seabed, possibly from this wreck).

NMRS, MS/829/33.

Material reported under RoW amnesty (2001):

A1385 iron nut and bolt: from seabed

A1791 1 telephone, 1 shellcase: from seabed

A2883 1 shellcase: from seabed

A3708 1 hand guard of sword: from seabed

A4274 2 portholes, 6 shell cases: from seabed.

NMRS, MS/829/35.

Note (23 July 2003)

The published photographs (taken both before and after conversion for war service) illustrate a large passenger liner with a near-straight stem and cruiser stern. The greater part of her length is taken up by a lengthy superstructure, which has two funnels, numerous lifeboats and a small bridge. Masts forward and aft indicate the locations of two holds forward and, possbly, a third aft. There is no focsle structure as such, but the ship has a small poop.

Information from RCAHMS (RJCM), 23 July 2003.

S Blackburn 1986.

Note (12 February 2010)

The location assigned to this record is essentially tentative.

Information from RCAHMS (RJCM), 12 February 2010.

Reference (2011)

Whittaker ID : 207

Name : HMS OTRANTO

Latitude : 554546

Longitude : 62840

Date Built : 1909

Registration : LONDON

Type : AMC (STEEL)

Tonnage : 12124

Tonnage Code : G

Length : 160

Beam : 20

Draught : 12m

Position : Exact Position

Loss Day : 5

Loss Month : 10

Loss Year : 1918

Comment : Collision and drifted ashore in Machair Bay (KASHMIR). Capt. Davidson

Cargo : ARMY STORES

Reference (19 April 2012)

UKHO Identifier : 003713

Feature Class : Wreck

Wreck Category : Dangerous wreck

State : LIVE

Classification : Unclassified

Position (Lat/long) : 55.76667,-6.48750

Horizontal Datum : ORDNANCE SURVEY OF GREAT BRITAIN (1936)

WGS84 Position (Lat/long) : 55.76658,-6.48845

WGS84 Origin : 3-D Cartesian Shift (BW)

Position Quality : Approximate

Depth : 9.0

Depth Method : Found by diver

Depth Quality : Least depth known

Water Depth : 16

Water Level Effect : Always under water/submerged

Vertical Datum : Lowest Astronomical Tide

Name : OTRANTO

Type : ARMED SS

Flag : BRITISH

Length : 163.1

Beam : 19.5

Draught : 11.9

Tonnage : 12124

Tonnage Type : Gross

Cargo : MILITARY EQUIPMENT

Date Sunk : 06/10/1918

Bottom Texture : Rock

Debris Field : SPREAD OVER 100MTRS SQ. AREA

Contact Description : Entire wreck

Original Sensor : Reported Sinking

Last Sensor : Diver Sighting

Original Detection Year : 1918

Last Detection Year : 1999

Original Source : Naval Vessel

Last Source : Divers

Circumstances of Loss : **VESSEL, BUILT 1909, DRIFTED ASHORE & WAS TOTALLY WRECKED FOLLOWING COLLISION WITH P&O LINER KASHMIR. OWNED AT TIME OF LOSS BY ORIENT STEAM NAVIGATION CO., VESSEL WAS TAKEN OVER AS AN AUXILIARY CRUISER, AND WAS BEING USED TO TRANSPORT AMERICAN TROOPS TO FRANCE. MANY LIVES WERE LOST.MOST OF SURVIVORS RESCUED BY HMS MOUNSEY.

Surveying Details : **MO15595 16.10.18 POSN 6M N OF ORSAY ISLAND. (HMS MOUNSEY).

**N/CP58643/66 19.10.66 REPD SUNK AFTER COLLISION IN 1918.

**H1768/67 4.9.67 ONLY THE PROPELLOR & PROP SHAFT & ENGINE BLOCK REMAIN. (MIN OF TRANSPORT, TELECON). CHART AS DWPA IN 554600N, 062930W. NC 2722.

**14.8.78 WK LOCATED IN MACHIR BAY IN 554600N, 062900W APPROX BY SUB AQUA DIVERS. CONTAINS MOTOR BIKES, ARMY VEHICLES, & LOCOMOTIVES. (STAFF DIVING OFFICER, FOSNI TELECON)

**H1270/78 17.11.82 BADLY BROKEN UP AND SPREAD OVER AREA OF ABOUT 100 SQ MTRS. DEEPEST PART LIES ABOUT 16MTRS, DUE W OF OLD RADAR TWR. BOILER ARE HIGHEST PART COMING TO WITHIN 9MTRS OF SURFACE. SITE IS LITTERED WITH LIVE SHELLS. WK OWNED BY TIM EPPS, PORT CHARLOTTE HOTEL, ISLAY. (EXERCISE SCOOBIE SCOOP, 3-17.9.82, REPORT). POSN INDICATED ON CHARTLET: 554600N, 062915W APPROX. CHART AS WK PA 9MTRS. BR STD.

**12.5.99 VERY BROKEN AND SALVAGED. SIX BOILERS STANDING 5MTRS HIGH IN CENTRE OF WRECKAGE. (DIVER MAGAZINE APR'99).

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