|Name(s): HMS Carentan.
Location: Swanage (1/4 mile east of Kyarra site)
Description: French submarine chaser, seized by British and later
during WW2 handed over to the Free French. 120ft long with only
20ft of beam and perhaps carrying too much ordinance/weapons?
(A heavy gun was bolted to the deck and many depth charges, some
of which are still on site!) She capsized and sank on the 21st
December 1943. while escorting the incoming British submarine
HMS Rorqual in a storm.
Only 6 of the 23 crew survived 1 being picked up by Rorqual
and the remainder saved by the Swanage lifeboat from the upturned
hull! The lifeboat crew returned to Swanage to get cutting gear
from a local garage. then returned to the Carentan in a full
gale to try to rescue the sailors trapped in the upturned ship.
Unfortunately she had already slipped to her final resting place.
Lots of ammunition and ordinance on this wreck, including depth
charges, so leave well alone!
This is a war grave. so please respect it as such.
'In my youth I had the privilege of hearing first hand the
tale of this wreck from "old hands" who were on the
lifeboat which answered the call, very moving, and something
that obviously had a deep effect on them.'
Text kindly written by Mike Marsh.
Divernet wreck tour.