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14/05/2009 - Lord Nelson
We spent an uneventful night at anchor just off Lundy Island. We awoke to a more promising day; it was bright with a bit of watery sunshine. We had gained a neighbour during the night, the cruise ship the ‘Sunbourn Princess’. After breakfast there were assisted climbs, where our wheelchair users and others who wanted a bit of help went aloft. The sun got to work and lifted the mist over the island. At around 11am we started our preparations to ferry the crew ashore, although the cruise ship was by then disgorging passengers at a prodigious rate. The small landing stage on Lundy resembled a busy shopping street, the ferry ‘Oldenburg’ had also arrived from Bideford, and was adding her human cargo to the melee. A snake of people could be seen trudging up the steep path to the village on top of the island.
When all was ready, the ‘RIB’ (aka our DOTI boat) was loaded with bodies and wheelchairs and made three trips ferrying crew members ashore. The first impression of Lundy Island was a bit disappointing – the landing stage area was a tad scruffy. This was soon dispelled though when the steep path was conquered, some on foot, others by a Landrover driven by some very helpful islanders. The small cluster of buildings at the top (pub, shop, farm and even a fire station/shed!) was very picturesque. All the buildings were made of weathered island stone. Not surprisingly, the first port of call was the pub ‘the Marismo Arms’ for fluid uptake requirements. The crew then went about their various ways on the tranquil island, which was by then reasonably warm and sunny, taking in fantastic views and craggy cliff top paths. For more detailed information about the island visit www.lundyisland.co.uk As usual Steve the Mate had been very insistent that no one missed the return ‘rib’ rides to the ship. The crew returned to the quay in dribs and drabs, tired but well satisfied with the visit. When all the crew were safely back on board, we celebrated with ‘Sundowners’ – a fruit punch taken on the wheelhouse deck. This was topped off with a roast beef dinner – the ‘perfik end to a perfik day’!!
Allan W/L Fwd Port