The Little Ships’ 75th Anniversary trip to Dunkirk

Our pal Mick Nolan went with them and took a mass of photos… And has now made a YouTube of them. What’s more, he added a soundtrack of our Julie’s singing accompanied by my old concertina! Thanks Mick!

Lifeboat Little Ship Lucy Lavers Dunkirk appeal

Lucy Lavers Dunkirk trip stopovers

The folks restoring lifeboat Little Ship Lucy Lavers are appealing for financial help to get her ready for a 75th anniversary trip back to the beaches at Dunkirk. If you can, chip in your few bobs here.

In May 1940 the then newly-built lifeboat was part of the fleet of ‘little ships’ that sailed to Dunkirk to evacuate the British and Allied forces stranded on the beaches. In May this year, 75 years after the great rescue from the beaches of Belguim, she is to make a return to Dunkirk after a loving restoration and repair job by the folks at Norfolk’s Rescue Wooden Boats.

It’ll be an emotional trip together with a convoy of other Dunkirk Little Ships. Before she leaves the UK, she is scheduled to call in at Lowestoft, Southwold, Aldeburgh and Harwich (see dates overleaf), before joining the fleet of Little Ships gathering in Ramsgate to make the crossing to Dunkirk.

The crew will include lifeboat men, and at each stopover there will be a land-based exhibition and an opportunity for the public to go aboard.

After Lucy Lavers returns from Dunkirk, visitors will be
able to book a trip afloat on her in Wells-next-the-Sea, as well as see her story displayed at RWB’s visitor centre at Stiffkey.

Little Ships to return to Dunkirk for the 75th anniversary


Over 50 Dunkirk little ships are to return to Dunkirk next year for the 75th anniversary of the evacuation of the British Expeditionary Force in 1940. My thanks to the Association of Dunkirk Little Ships for the above photos.

During the famous evacuation, some 338,000 British and French troops were saved from German forces.

Many are over 85 years old, and they will make a remarkable spectacle as they voyage down the Thames into the Thames Estuary to Ramsgate, and then to Dunkirk and back.

Just before and just after the Dunkirk date will be good days to be on the water around North Kent, and to take some photographs.

The ADLS‘s officers have published the following timetable of events:

  • 16-17th May – little ships will be gathered at Royal Docks, London
  • 19-20th May – little ships gather at Ramsgate
  • 21th May – little ships depart for Dunkirk
  • 22th May – back up departure day in case of poor weather
  • 23th May – beach memorial service at Dunkirk
  • 24th May – ADLS commemorative service, 1100 local time on quayside
  • 25th May – little ships return to Ramsgate
  • 26th May – back up return day in case of poor weather

Here are some photos I managed to take on and around the Medway last year: