Ramsey remembers tragic loss of ship 100 years ago

A memorial service for the local crew of HMS Ramsey, sunk during the First World War''Geoff & Tim Perry, with Tim's children Catherine (10), Samuel (8) & Tim (4)

A memorial service for the local crew of HMS Ramsey, sunk during the First World War''Geoff & Tim Perry, with Tim's children Catherine (10), Samuel (8) & Tim (4)

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A service to commemorate the loss of the HMS Ramsey and 21 men who died when she was sunk was held on Saturday at the war memorial in the Courthouse Gardens in Ramsey.

As a mark of respect, the town’s commissioners pledged to place a simple wooden cross for each individual on the 100th anniversary of their loss.

Wreaths were laid and a two-minutes’ silence was observed.

The Ramsey was built for the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Company by Barrow Shipbuilders and sailed on the Fleetwood and Belfast route as the Duke of Lancaster.

In 1912 she was bought by the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company and named The Ramsey.

After completing the 1914 season on the Liverpool to Douglas route, she was taken over by the British government and fitted out by Cammell, Laird and Company as an armed boarding vessel.

At the outbreak of the First World War, 11 of the 15 ships of the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company were requisitioned or chartered by the Admiralty for use in war service.

On August 8, 1915, HMS Ramsey intercepted a steamer flying the Russian flag, and signalled for her to stop.

As the two vessels closed, the stranger hauled down the Russian flag and hoisted the German ensign.

It was the raider Meteor in disguise.

Almost as soon as she had revealed her true colours, she opened fire on the Ramsey with devastating effect, eventually sinking her.

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