Latest news on this wreck.... We finally think we have found this ships missing anchor.
This from the pen of Jack Gayton whom with along with Roy Graham; were the Royal navy divers who first found the Association wreck site. It is another article from an old copy of Triton Magazine -October 1967 edition. This edition is from the time of the discovery of the wreck -ie -before the Roland Morris or Blue Sea divers teams had even arrived on site. The article explains all about those very first days and even gives us a couple of quotes about the anchor the Navy team had then found. It announces that their first discovery was a single gun after which Gayton wrote: 'A systematic search was organised around that cannon and soon many others were discovered, together with an enormous anchor (shaft 19ft long and 12ft across the flukes).' .........'the size of the anchor indicates a ship of the tonnage of Association' Roy Graham was one of the most archaeologically minded among them, therefore, Gayton and Graham, must have physically measured the navy anchor as they tried to identify the wreck they had just found. This is also the earliest quote I have seen giving it to be 19ft long etc. (Our anchor is measured at 18ft-3 inches long and 11ft wide and this includes the thick sandy concretion)
So, where exactly did the Navy team put their salvaged find? This information is crucial if the Navy teams anchor is to be considered as the same as the one we recently discovered. The following information was published some 30 years after the event:
Below is a picture of a big cruise ship parked up right over where our anchor lays today. She is much bigger than the Colossus was. Note the wind is on her starboard beam and coming at her from the South east- it is only a breeze in the picture- but note how she is opposing the wind on her beam with her stern facing toward southard well. When anchoring there to dive-due to the tides here- our boat is side on to any wind-no matter how strong it is. (not that we’d go out in a gale!) Furthermore, at a period in the ebb tide cycle, there is also another tide that joins the one from crow here at this point- it flows south out of Tresco channel and meets the other tide coming from Crow and both are forced together and go around the southard well reef.
Mr Larn went on local TV to dispute our find by saying it was the navy dive teams anchor we had found-even though he had never dived the site, or even spoken to us about the find and its exact position, but had previously updated and published his 'research' to the contrary above. He recently wrote to Diver Magazine (Oct 2013 page 122) stating that Roland Morris -'confided in me (Mr Larn) only in the late 1980's, shortly before he died, that he had not stolen the navy team's anchor, as many believed. He confirmed that it still lay off Nut Rock' -So why did Mr Larn publish the above contradictory information in his book later in 1999 then? Go figure!
Given all this evidence- can our anchor really be the one deposited in St Marys Roads by the navy? I dont see how.For one thing we have no position of it other than Mr Larn saying he looked for it but failed to find it-where ever that was?? If one looks objectively at the artifact we actually have and takes away the history of HMS Colossus and navy activity with HMS Association- one must come to the conclusion that the artifact we have is a mid to late 18th century naval anchor that fits well with a 74 gun ship of that period and the same as the one below-in my view.
However, as nobody else seems to be prepared to put forward a proper case for the anchor possibly being from the gilstone; here are some facts and ideas in favour of the possibly of it being from that site- ie- Association and not Colossus. Someones got to do it!
His timeline, in a nut shell, is this:-
The anchor was raised by the Navy in 1967 and placed in St Marys Roads. (True enough)
He dives the spot in 1968 but fails to relocate the anchor. (He clearly has a position)
He also states that: 'numerous diver searches also fail to relocate the anchor' (They clearly also have a position).
He then says that the Navy team believed their anchor had been removed by salvageman Roland Morris. (Why?-probably because they cant find it as its not where they left it?)
He then publishes to the contrary that the anchor is actually: 'still there to this day' (How does he know if its never been relocated?)
He then states that in the late 1980's that he spoke to Roland Morris and in Mr Larn's own words- "the truth emerged" when 'apparently' Morris is supposed to have said that he did not in fact remove the navys anchor that they placed in St marys Roads. -Being 'the truth'-therefore it must still be there?
So with that in mind Mr Larn then publishes in 1999 (again to the contrary) that the anchor was- 'lifted and taken to the mainland'- he clearly didn't believe Morris and must know for a fact that it has gone. Evenso:-
We find 32 anchors in St Marys roads during our survey of the area in 2013. This area is roughly one and a half miles square. Richard Larn now states emphatically that the one anchor we have lifted is his 'missing' anchor. He has no idea of the position from which our anchor has actually come from-any more than he knows where his missing anchor is-or was. Therefore he is merely guessing that ours is the same anchor that he and his associates have continually failed to relocate-even though they clearly have a position for it.
Roland Morris did in fact lift an anchor and take it to the mainland and there is an image of it in his book 'Island Treasure' and he states that the anchor came from that wreck. There are 2 Royal naval angle crown anchors on display in Penzance.