The discovery in Canadian Arctic waters of one of the two Royal Navy vessels which disappeared during a tragic expedition over 150 years ago has excited the heritage centre team at Pembroke Dock, where one of the ships was built.
HM Ships Erebus and Terror disappeared in 1848 on the ill-fated expedition, led by Sir John Franklin, to chart the Northwest Passage. The Canadian Prime Minister announced this week that one of the ships had been located.
HMS Erebus was built at Wales’ only Royal Dockyard, at Pembroke Dock, and launched in June 1826 as a bomb vessel. It was later converted to a survey ship for polar regions.
The naval vessels left the Thames in May 1845 but disaster overtook them and they were finally abandoned in the ice three years later. Both crews were lost.
Following this discovery Pembroke Dock Heritage Centre – located in the former Royal Dockyard Chapel – is planning a new display featuring the Erebus and the Expedition.
The Heritage Centre already has volunteers working on the exhibition. “It’s a very exciting and important discovery,” said naval historian Ted Goddard, a Volunteer with the Sunderland Trust which runs the Heritage Centre. “This has been one of the great maritime mysteries.”
For further information please contact John Evans, Pembroke Dock Heritage Centre, on 01646 684220. E: john.evans@sunderlandtrust