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Last updated on August 5th, 2017 at 03:46 am
A guest post from the brilliant Gideon Haigh:
I have shared your pleasure in Pasha Bulkermania, as it reminds me of the grand old days of shipwreck tourism. For instance, next year marks the centenary of one of our most popular wrecks, the barque Falls of Halladale. For the month after it grounded on a reef near Peterborough, it became a popular attraction, drawing folk from miles around, fascinated by the ship’s beauty, and also the busy salvage operations. Check out the delighted throng in this photo. Imagine the conversations:
Child: What’s on television, mother?
Mother: Foolish child. At least forty-eight years will elapse before such a fiendish contraption! We’re going to see the Falls of Halladale again …
Child: But mother, we have seen it twice already. And we saw the Speculant and the La Bella …
Mother: Hush child! This is the Edwardian era. We must make our own entertainment!
My favourite story of this wreck concerns the second mate, Griffin, who liked Peterborough so much that he bought land there, emigrated, enlisted in the AIF, was wounded at Gallipolli, and returned to live at Banool and Colac where he died in June 1956 – just too soon to see TV sweep shipwrecks away as a form of mass entertainment.
Sail on, mighty Bulker!