As we search for the remains of the Hercules we are often reminded just how much lies at the bottom of the English Channel. This is the wreck of a British minelayer from WW2 and back in the 90’s we were the first divers to visit her. She is upright largely intact 130ft long and lies in 210ft of water. By the time we complete our search we should have a nice little sonar image library of mid channel wrecks, not a bad little by-product to have.

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  1. Odyssey were condemned for trying to salvage the Victory but they found a lot of other wrecks while searching for it and other treasure wrecks they had targeted. Deeper Dorset is finding new wrecks and getting better definitions of known wrecks by sidescan or underwater video and photos and photogrammetry whilst searching for the Hercules. Like Odyssey, Deeper Dorset is self funded mainly by Grahame and Penny Knott and without them all this maritime history would be lost and with Historic England running out of money with resulting job redundancies there is no money coming from Government sources. Divers have been condemned over recent years and been hamstrung by ridiculous rules re lifting objects from the seabed to identify them and the wrecks. Permission to excavate wrecks involves paying a lot of money for a licence. In the meantime some wrecks that have been dived for years are now being “protected” preventing further investigation of those wrecks. This can only be to justify the administrators’ posts. They have lost the vast information they used to get free from divers regarding new wrecks. It will be interesting what comes first, Deeper Dorset being funded to find new wrecks or Receiver of Wreck once more losing all the information from droit returns as they did for the 60s and 70s. When it comes to our Maritime History it is the amateur, in the sense of being unpaid and not in the unprofessional sense, who has found our historic shipwrecks over the years and who now seek to unlock the secrets and stories from the deep. Keep up the good work!

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