A memorial service will take place in Stranraer tomorrow, Tuesday 31 January to mark the 70th anniversary of the sinking of the MV Princess Victoria.
The vessel sank during a severe storm in gale force winds shortly after leaving Stranraer bound for Larne in Northern Ireland on 31 January 1953, with the loss of 135 lives.
The sinking is the worst peacetime maritime disaster to occur in British coastal waters.
The Royal Antediluvian Order of the Buffaloes have arranged the Memorial Service which will be held at 11:00am on Tuesday 31 January at the Princess Victoria Monument in Agnew Park, Stranraer.
As part of commemorations marking the 70th anniversary of the disaster, Dumfries and Galloway Council will plant a commemorative tree in Agnew Park.
A new MV Princess Victoria Community Exhibition, ‘Our Roughest Storm & Strongest Anchors’ will be unveiled, which will “explore Stranraer's story of loss, bravery, love and community through visual display, spoken word and music.”
There will also be a prize giving for local school children who have been asked to submit stories inspired by the MV Princess Victoria and based on the theme of bravery.
Convenor of Dumfries and Galloway Council, Councillor Stephen Thompson, said: “The loss of the MV Princess Victoria is still felt in communities across Dumfries and Galloway. As in each of the 70 years since the tragedy, we gather again to remember those who died, and to pay our tributes. The new exhibition and remembrance tree will raise awareness and allow us to continue to reflect on this loss.”
Councillor Linda Dorward, Depute Convenor of Dumfries and Galloway Council added: “Remembering those who lost their lives is an important part of showing our respect for their lives, and part of the grieving process for our communities.
“We recognise especially the missed opportunities for life of the children and young people.
“We also remember the many people who came to the rescue of the ailing vessel – the RAF aircraft, Merchant ships, and of course the local lifeboat crews.”
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