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The Rothsay Castle was built on the Clyde in 1816 as a river boat. (See bar708~On the Rothsay Castle Steam-Boat and also bar666~Clyde Steamers 1818)

She was moved to Liverpool where she was used for day trips along the coast of North Wales; a task for which she was too small and, by 1831, too old. At around midday on August 17, 1831, she left the Mersey carrying 150 passengers and soon met strong wind and rough sea. A passenger asked Captain Atkinson, to return to port, but Atkinson was drunk and refused to go back. By 10 p.m. there were two feet (61 cm) of water in the stokehold. The pumps did not to work; the single lifeboat had a hole in the bottom; and there was no signalling apparatus to attract help. At around 1 a.m. on August 18th the Rothsay Castle ran aground and broke up. The captain and the two mates were swept to their death when the funnel collapsed. Only 23 passengers were rescued; 130 passengers and crew were lost. The coroner's jury concluded: "had the Rothsay Castle been a seaworthy vessel and properly manned, this awful calamity might have been averted. They therefore cannot disguise their indignation at the conduct of those who could place such a vessel on this station (i) Bodies were washed up over a wide area of Anglesey and the Welsh mainland. In 1832 the Reverend William Williams won the prize for poetry at the Eisteddfod in Beaumaris for a poem telling the story of the disaster. (ii)



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