Continuing intensive efforts to locate two missing Tarbert fishermen.
Above: Candles were lit on Tarbert pier to guide the two missing fishermen home.
An intensive search operation to locate skipper Duncan MacDougall and crewman Przemek Krawczyk, missing since the Tarbert trawler Nancy Glen sank in Loch Fyne on 19 January, continued throughout last week, reports David Linkie.
Up to 20 local boats from Tarbert, Carradale and Campbeltown searched every day last week in the area where Nancy Glen is lying in 143m of water in Loch Fyne, three miles from harbour.
Forty-eight hours after the 13m vessel capsized suddenly while towing, candles were laid along the pier at Tarbert to light the way home for the missing men.
This tribute stemmed from an idea by Tarbert woman Jean Lawrie, who posted on a local Tarbert Facebook page on Saturday afternoon: “I know I won’t be the only one feeling this way. I just feel at a loss and would like to do something we could all take part in. Some light to guide these boys home and some light to show support to the families.”
A large number of local residents later gathered on the quay in silence and lit candles, some of which were assembled to form Nancy Glen’s TT 100 registration.
The following day, the Clyde Fishermen’s Trust formed the Nancy Glen Campaign to provide support for the families of the two missing men.
The fund immediately attracted generous and widespread support, both locally and from the wider UK fishing industry. As Fishing News went to print, over £150,000 had been donated in just five days.
A spokesperson for the Clyde Fishermen’s Trust said: “It is very likely that the men are still in the boat, given the circumstances. Currently, the site of the accident is in view for the families, and it would be fair to say they are tormented, knowing their boys to be so close but unrecovered. The families are absolutely desperate to reclaim their men, and this would involve the lifting of the vessel. Neither family is interested specifically in the boat, just the men. One wife is keen to send her husband home to Poland; the other family just wish to rest their son, father and husband in his home of Tarbert.
“We will need the support of MAIB, the Royal Navy, our politicians, our media, our communities and the wider public to help work towards the retrieval of the vessel to offer, in some sense, a little closure in these heart-breaking circumstances.
“The Clyde Fishermen set up this campaign because it was entirely the right thing to do for the families, who are currently devastated. We are a close-knit community who stick together. We were due to celebrate together as a community on Saturday at our Burns Supper. Instead, we mobilised in grief and supported that same community. It’s a loss to the community and the nation to lose such brave men at sea; the least we can do is offer our help. We will do our utmost to ensure the missing men are recovered.”
In addition to financial support, CFT have been inundated with offers of practical assistance in their attempts to locate and recover the two missing fishermen.
The tragedy occurred at 18.00hrs on Thursday 18 January, when Nancy Glen is reported to have capsized very quickly. Having managed to scramble along the rapidly inclining deck, crewman John Miller was safely recovered from the water by a passing fish farm vessel.
After capsizing, Nancy Glen continued to float on the surface, as two boats were able to attach ropes to support the upturned hull for a few hours. During this time, plans for the supply vessel Northern River to employ a heavy lift crane to keep the trawler on the surface, were quickly put in place.
Sadly, before the lift could take place, the ropes parted and Nancy Glen sank.
Separate MAIB and police investigations were carried out last week.
Anyone wishing to make a donation can do so directly at: clydefishermenstrust.com/the-nancy-glen-campaign
Or by cheque to:
Clyde Fishermen’s Trust
The Briggait, Unit 227
141 Bridgegate, Glasgow
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