'Lord Rank' sail training ketch sinks off Antrim


IRELAND’s second sail training vessel, Lord Rank, sank off the Antrim coast early yesterday after it ran aground.

Six people were rescued from the 70-foot ketch owned by the Ocean Youth Trust when it ran aground on Carrickmannon Rock, just off Kinbane head.

The six were taken ashore by the RNLI Portrush lifeboat and RNLI Red Bay Atlantic inshore lifeboat. The Ballycastle Coastguard rescue team and the Irish Coast Guard Sligo-based Sikorsky helicopter responded to the call-out, co-ordinated by Belfast’s Marine Rescue Co-ordination Centre.

Belfast Coastguard acting watch manager Kyle Curran said all six on board were wearing lifejackets. “So despite the seriousness of the situation, the vessel could both rapidly summon assistance and keep the crew safe until help arrived.” The six included three Downtown Radiopresenters who were involved in a charity fundraiser.

Efforts were made to salvage the ketch, but it sank early yesterday. Lord Rankhad become the island’s only active sail training vessel since the sinking of the Asgard IIoff the French coast in September 2008.