From Historical Hastings

The Midge was a 130 ton schooner that from around 1850 was registered at Rye and belonged to Messrs Putland and Sons[1] that was destroyed upon re-launching after delivering coal to St Leonards.

Events leading to disaster

On the 13th of September 1861, the vessel was en route from Hartlepool to St. Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex, with a cargo of coal[2] and had been beached near to the London Road/St Leonards Archway landing slip to unload. At high tide, once unloading had been completed, the hawser attached to the mooring buoys (by which she was being pulled off the beach) snapped. As a result of the forces generated by this, and the high seas, led to her being driven ashore broadside onto one of the groynes. Over the next 24 hours, the seas continued to batter the vessel with the result that her back was broken and she was declared a complete wreck[1].

The bow portion was completely upside-down and about a quarter of the ship floated some distance away to the east, with the other timbers eventually being lost to the tide.


References & Notes

  1. a b Sussex Agricultural Express - Tuesday 17 September 1861 pg.2
  2. The Sunderland Site Page 121: The Sunderland Site Page 121, accessdate: 28 December 2019