This vessel was built by W B Thompson & Co Ltd., of Dundee (Yard No 261) and launched in November 1887. She was powered by a triple expansion steam engine of 282nhp and her dimensions were 242.2′ x 33.2′ x 15.3′.
The Glasgow steamship Glanmire, originally built for the City of Cork Shipping Company was purchased by the Ranking Line of Glasgow to serve on the Grangemouth to Amsterdam North Sea route. She set off for Leith and Grangemouth from Amsterdam with a general cargo in July 1912. The Glanmire sailed this route on a regular basis departing from Grangemouth every Saturday and returning the following week carrying cargo and passengers between the two ports. On this voyage she was skippered by Captain Band and, although he was an experienced navigator and it was not his first voyage on the route, he was later to admit that he was somewhat unfamiliar with the coastal waters of Scotland – a lack of knowledge which was to prove fatal for the steamship. He had a crew of 19 men aboard and only 17 paying passengers despite her 66 first class and 37 steerage berths and a cargo of sugar and other general goods.
In the early hours of the morning of the 25th , as the ship approached the last part of it’s voyage and neared the entrance to the Firth of Forth, she was enveloped in a dense fog dramatically reducing visibility in the early morning light. Without warning the ship ran aground and was holed. The crew immediately launched the ship’s lifeboats and efficiently managed to disembark all the passengers, who had been in the cabin preparing themselves for disembarkation at the moment of impact, before clambering aboard the lifeboats themselves and pushing away from the stranded ship. The captain had clearly lost his bearings in the fog and had run her aground just north of St Abbs Head. As the passengers and crew pulled clear of the wreck she floated off the rocks and foundered within an hour of striking leaving her partially submerged and clearly a total wreck. The distress signals from the ship had been spotted by local inhabitants and, despite a problem with the local lifeboat, a number of fishing boats were manned and rushed to the scene to guided the ship’s lifeboats with the passengers and crew aboard through the narrow to the harbour at St Abbs.
The Glanmire later floated off the rocks and drifted out to sea on the rising tide where she foundered and became a total loss. The wreck of the Glanmire lies in position 55°55.228’N, 002°08.242’W oriented 039°/219° with seabed depths around 27 metres.
The wreck is well broken but is a very popular dive lying across a gently sloping seabed on its port side. The boilers and engine are still clearly visible and the bow section the most ship like portion of the remaining wreckage which is strewn over a wide area. At the stern end of the wreck the rudder and propeller are also still visible. The wreckage is covered in colourful sealife making it a favourite destination for underwater photographers.