December 2018

Monday, December 31 2018

December 2018

This is a text only version of the newsletter. To view the newsletter online, click here.

December 2018 

This month's edition of the Heritage and Education Centre (HEC) Newsletter includes an update on our new website, the annual Proctor Lecture and a sneak peek of next year! 

New Website 

The Lloyd's Register Foundation Heritage and Education Centre are currently in the final development stage of our new website and will be launching it soon!

As part of the launch new content and resources will be available, including digitised documents from the Ship Plan and Survey Report collection, the World Fleet Statistics, Casualty Returns and new blogs.

Look out on our social media pages and other platforms to find out when we're launching it!

Proctor Lecture

This year the Lloyd's Register Foundation Heritage and Education Centre were once again thrilled to host the annual Proctor Lecture. 

The Proctor Lecture celebrates David Proctor’s great contribution to maritime history both in Britain and internationally.

This year David J Starkey, from the University of Hull, gave a fascinating presentation on 'Top Predators: Privateering, Trawling and Marine Environments'. 

Thank you to everyone who attended. We hope you enjoyed your evening as much as we did! 


The Lloyd's Register Foundation Heritage and Education Centre have lots of exciting things planned for 2019 including... 

A new exhibition!
Continuing our digitisation work!
More events, lectures and visits at 71 Fenchurch Street!

The Heritage and Education Centre will continue to grow and look at new ways to use our unique collection in order to ensure the public education and outreach in marine and engineering science and history.

Make sure you're following our social media pages and visiting our website to find out more about everything we have planned!  

Interesting Enquiries 

Earlier this month the Heritage & Education Centre received an interesting research enquiry from a Basque-based independent salvager and local historian. The request was for any correspondence, survey reports and plans for a local wreck with a tragic story; the French cargo vessel SS Lyndiane. After preliminary survey of the site the aim of this researcher was to photograph and film the wreck with a view to producing a publication on the local area. Attempts would also be considered as to the ability to salvage any equipment or finds from the wreck. For these purposes, the researcher requested the assistance of the Foundation and the records under our care. After some correspondence what emerged was an infamous story well known in the region. Built at Sunderland as the Robina in 1883 by J. L. Thompson & Sons Ltd, the vessel was an iron screw steamer measuring roughly 260 feet in extreme length and was just under 1700 gross tons. Over the course of her life she passed ownership many times and underwent five name changes before her new owners, De Chanaud et Cie of Le Havre, finally christened her Lyndiane in 1913. At the outbreak of war Lyndiane worked as a cargo ship ferrying vital supplies back to war torn France. Working in this way for nearly four years, Lyndiane finally met her end in the Bay of Biscay on 16 July 1918 85 miles NW of San Sebastian. On a trip between Kaolack, in modern Senegal, to Fecamp, she was ambushed by U-Boat 103 and torpedoed twice, an attack which destroyed her guns and forced the crew of 42 into the lifeboats. Sadly for the crew the attack was not over; the U-Boat finally sank the Lyndiane with gunfire before turning around to ram the lifeboats a total of four times. After eight hours holding on to wreckage, the crew were picked up by the Spanish naval vessel Villanil; only nine survived.
Looking into the archive and records of the Lloyd’s Register Foundation we were able to find a host of plans, correspondence and survey reports detailing the construction, repairs, layout and other details of the Lyndiane. These included a profile, a ballast section, midship section, and a combination of main and auxiliary boiler plans; documents only available through the Foundation. These documents from our collection will inform the means to film and salvage this unique wreck just over a century after she was lost…

It's Christmas! 

Please note that the Heritage and Education Centre will be closed throughout the Christmas holidays from the 22nd December through to the 1st January. We will open again on the 2nd January! 

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! 

Project Undaunted 

I am pleased to announce that Project Undaunted ends this year on a real high! The Lloyd’s Register Foundation project team are currently working with Max Communications, our digitisers and cataloguers, overseeing and managing what is a streamlined and efficient operation. Project Undaunted aims to catalogue and digitise the Foundation’s expansive maritime collection, the oldest and largest of its kind with a view to complete open access; 1.25 million documents, plans, technical drawings, and varying forms of correspondence. The rate of digitising and cataloguing is also extremely fast; after just two months, 25,000 records will have been digitised and catalogued by the end of this year. Continuing at this rate it is believed that our entire collection will be digitally available in around three years!

The Project Undaunted team have also been actively engaged in the creation of a bespoke Content Management System (CMS) that will hold the digital display images and catalogued data, ultimately allowing members of the public to access the entirety of our extensive collection. This is an exciting time for the project and will allow us to add to our knowledge of the collection and discover what unknown treasures lie within; at this point we have only scratched the surface.
The collection yielded an interesting and unexpected item earlier this month; a caulking sample! Wrapped in paper and slipped in an envelope pasted with documents; quick examination of the survey reports and correspondence showed that this was a sample from the 1889 Prince Edward Island built wooden barque Kathleen. Caulking; a process to seal and pack joints between the timbers of wooden ships is organic material made from cotton and oakum (hemp saturated in tar). Once driven in by mallet and caulking iron; a kind of chisel, the hull is then covered in melted pine pitch to complete the process. In this case; the Lloyd’s Register surveyor at Bideford cut a sample from the hull of the Kathleen to send to the Classing Committee at London, a fairly common practice evidenced by the thousands of survey reports. What is incredibly unusual is that these samples were usually thrown away after examination; except in this case, making it an entirely different kind of find!
To keep up to date with the progress of Project Undaunted, as well as the weird and wonderful finds from the Lloyd’s Register Foundation’s collection search #ProjectUndaunted on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!
From the Project Undaunted team, we wish you a Merry Christmas, and all the best for the New Year!

Did You Know?

2018 has been a big year for the Lloyd's Register Foundation Heritage and Education Centre! 

This year we.....

  • Worked on a brand new website! 
  • Catalogued and digitised 53,000 documents! 
  • Held an exhibition curated by Museum of London Archaeology exploring finds excavated at 71 Fenchurch Street! 
  • Published 17 blogs!
  • Welcomed 2228 visitors to our Open House event!
  • Launched Waterproof: Safety at Sea at the Rotterdam Maritime Museum which welcomed 51,146 in the first three months of opening! 
  • Held summer lectures on the First Wold War and workshops on research skills!
  • Funded the 1851 Trust Next Generation Roadshow which had 1000 students taking part! 
  • Conducted over 50 tours and visits!
  • Shared 542 (and counting) tweets, reaching over 350,000 engagements! 
  • We joined Instagram!
  • Reached over 170 countries through our website!

Thank you to all of our supporters, visitors, social media followers, researchers and everyone else in between, we couldn't do it without you. Next year we have even more planned make sure you're following our social media pages to find out more!