Divers trawl for relics where attack launched by U-boat
- On 08/01/2009
- In World War Wrecks
By Alexandra Wood
As dawn broke more than 90 years ago over the North Sea a U-boat captain gleefully ordered the destruction of the Scarborough fishing fleet.
Long after his daring attack in 1916 which sent a dozen trawlers to the bottom of the North Sea, Karl Von Georg recalled: "What a massacre of ships that was!
"We steered back and forth firing at full speed with the bow gun. One after another the ships hit at the water line, listed and plunged, until all had vanished from the surface of the sea, save the one on which the survivors were crowded."
It could have been a lot worse – and Von Georg, of U-57, has gone down in history as a humanitarian who saved more than 120 lives, making sure they were all transferred to a boat to carry them home.
Now divers from Scarborough Sub Aqua Club have discovered the resting places of at least six of the trawlers, recovering three bells, and this year they will be trying to find yet more.