Official No:  99469   Port Number and Year: 12th in South Shields, 1894 (SSS16)

                                                                               3rd in Milford, in 1903

Description: Wooden side liner; steam screw; coal burner.  Ketch rigged: two masts, mainsail and mizzen.

Crew: 8 men (1903).

Registered at Milford: 7 Aug 1903

Built: A. Marr, Leith, in 1894

Tonnage: 99.82 grt  15.72 net

Length / breadth / depth (feet): 87.5 / 18.6 / 9.4

Engine: C 2-Cyl. 30 h.p.  Engine: J. P. Rennoldson & Sons, South Shields



As SSS16

1894: John Murray, 18 Baring St., South Shields.

Managing owner.


As M185

7 Aug 1903: George Henry Hart Way, 57 High St., Mountain Ash, Glamorgan.

Manager: John Pettit, St. Ann's Rd., Hakin.


16 Apr 1904:  William Jenkins, 'Denmark House', Priory Rd., Milford.

Managing owner.


Landed at Milford:  28 Apr 1902 - 26 Jan 1909


F. Self cert -, age 36, born Westhall, residing 9 Harmond Rd., Grimsby; signed on 13 Jul 1905

William Summers -, 49, Exeter; 16 Aug 1905

H. Pook 5219, 28, Grimsby, 40 St.Anne's Rd., Hakin; 10 Nov 1905; 13 Jan 1906

William Nicholas -, 44, Cornwall, 19 Gwili Rd., Hakin; 14 Apr, 4 Jul 1906; 4 Jan 1907; 1 Jan, 18 Mar, 10 Sep 1908; 5 Jan 1909

H. Tyvold -, 37, Norway; 13 Apr 1907

J. W. Pook -, 31, Ipswich; 18 Mar 1908


Life Brigade is a volunteer search and rescue organisation assisting HM Coastguard in coastal emergencies.  It was established in 1865, after the wreck of the steamer STANLEY.

7 Mar - 14 Apr 1907: Laid up for repairs.

8 Feb 1909: Foundered 10 miles NW of Pendeen Lighthouse. [See below.]

Cert. Cancelled & Milford Registry Closed: 15 Feb 1909.

 Accidents and Incidents 

Log book entries:



St.Ann's Head ENE, 15 miles.

Carried away taffrail and  bulwarks, damage estimated at fifteen pounds. Shipping a sea.

    W.Bevan. (Skipper)





Lost anchor and 31 shackles and chain, damaged compass, port bow, boom and rudder. In Lundy Roads, struck by wind and sea.

    William Nicholas. (Skipper).




From The Pembrokeshire Herald and General Advertiser of Friday 17th July 1903:



    On Wednesday last the liner "Life Brigade" was offered for sale, at the Lord Nelson Hotel, by Messrs Evans and Roch, and after some spirited bidding was knocked down to the first mortgagee. 



The Times, Wednesday, Feb 10, 1909; pg. 16; Issue 38879; col F
     News in Brief

shipping accidents.-  ..............  The steam fishing boat Life Brigade, of Milford, struck some sunken wreckage off Pendeen on Monday night and foundered an hour later.  Captain William Nicholas and his crew of seven hands took to their boat and landed at St.Ives yesterday morning with a ground sea running and a strong southerly wind blowing.  The crew had a trying experience for eight hours in an open boat.  During the night they signalled to two passing steamers, but one took no notice and the other gave a blast on the whistle and passed on.




From The Pembrokeshire Herald and General Advertiser of Friday 12th February 1909:



    The news arrived on Tuesday morning that the steam liner "Life Brigade," had sunk off the Cornish coast. The vessel belonged to Messrs. W. Jenkins and Sons, engineers, etc., and was skippered by Mr. William Nicholas, of Greville Road. The crew, we are happy to state, were rescued, but their belongings went down with the ship, not a vestige being saved. It will be remembered that on Monday night the weather was very rough. The skipper and crew arrived at Milford on Thursday morning. 



From The Pembrokeshire Herald and General Advertiser of Friday 9th April 1909:



How Steam Liner's Crew were Paid.

    An interesting case of importance to persons engaged in the fishing industry was heard at the Haverfordwest County Court on Wednesday by Judge Bishop. Alfred Farrow, 102, Charles Street, Milford Haven, sued William Jenkins, Priory Road, Milford Haven, for 18 11s. 10d. for groceries supplied to the liner "Life Brigade," of which the defendant is owner, between 19th December, 1907, and March 4th, 1908. Mr. W. J. Jones appeared for the plaintiff and Mr. R. D. Gilbertson defended.

    Mr. Farrow, the plaintiff, said in his evidence that he had been supplying the steam liner "Life Brigade" for some time before this disputed account, and sent in his bill to Mr. J. H. Bishop, of Haverfordwest, the manager for Mr. Jenkins, by whom the accounts were paid. The skipper of the "Life Brigade" gave the order, and told plaintiff to send in his bill to Mr. Bishop. When he heard the skipper had left, he (the plaintiff) went to Mr. Bishop and asked what about his account? Mr. Bishop replied that the ship had not been doing very well and he must wait. The plaintiff said he was quite ready to wait if the account was all right. The plaintiff next saw Barnes, the chief engineer, and asked him about the account. Barnes replied, "All I know my account for wages has been kept back at the office." Afterwards he saw the defendant Jenkins, who said he had nothing to do with it.

    In cross-examination by Mr. Gilbertson, plaintiff said he was not aware of the custom that the men on liners were not paid wages but a share of the catch. It was not true that he gave credit to the crew. He debited the account to the owners of the ship.

    Re-examined: No tradesman would give credit to the crew, who were here to-day and gone to-morrow.

    Captain Nicholas, skipper of the "Life Brigade," said he knew of his own knowledge that the plaintiff's account had previous to this particular account been paid at the office. Replying to Mr. Gilbertson the witness said that men on liners were paid a share of the catch, after all expenses had been paid. The grub was paid for out of the shares coming to the men.

    Re-examined, the skipper said that when the goods were ordered the ship's credit was pledged.

    Mr. J. H. Bishop, fish merchant and agent of Haverfordwest and Milford Haven, was then called on behalf owners of the "Life Brigade." The custom of the port was, he said, that the crews of liners should pay for their own provisions out of their share of the catches. In the case of the "Life Brigade" there were twelve and a quarter shares; the owners took five shares, the skipper one and a quarter, and the remainder of the crew had one share each. There was a crew of men on a liner. The provisions were paid for out of the crew's shares.

    His Honour: Suppose they do not earn enough to pay expenses?

    Witness: Then it is carried forward and debited to the next voyage.

    The witness added that he told the plaintiff that the crew had not earned anything that voyage, that he could not pay him, but that he would do go when they did earn enough.

    His Honour: The owner is not responsible to anybody as far as it apparently goes. It is either you or the skipper who must be responsible.

    Witness: I cannot be responsible. We all get a loss occasionally.

    His Honour: I am sure you must. As far as I can see the owner has nothing to do with the food.

    His Honour said he would take time to consider his verdict. It was a very important matter.


From the Haverfordwest and Milford Haven Telegraph of Wednesday 19th May 1909:


Milford Fishing Custom


    Yesterday His Honour Judge Bishop gave an important decision at the Haverfordwest County Court in a case affecting the custom on steam liners at Milford.

    At a previous court Alfred Farrow, baker and grocer, Charles Street, Milford Haven, claimed 18 11s from William Jenkins, owner of the "Life Brigade", Milford Haven, for bread and groceries supplied to the crew of his liner.  Mr. W. J. Jones was for the plaintiff, and Mr. Gilbertson, Pembroke, for the defendant.

    His Honour now gave judgement.  He said the goods were ordered by the skipper, and the skipper being the owner's agent in the management of the ship, the question was whether the owner was liable for his action in matters connected with the sailing of the ship.  The skipper had to select the crew and make other arrangements, and it seemed to him that under these circumstances the skipper was the agent and the owner ought to be responsible for his orders and acts.  A skipper was like a butler in that the owner paid for all goods ordered.  The only peculiarity was that the wages were paid by another agent, Mr. Bishop, who had to divide the proceeds of the fish caught in certain proportions.  But defendant's liability was not by any means upset in consequence of that.  It would be ridiculous to suppose that tradespeople were supplying each individual member of the crew.  The reasonable view was that the grocer supplied the ship, and he held that the liability of the owner of the ship had been established.  He gave a verdict for the plaintiff for the amount claimed.

    Mr. Gilbertson said that His Honour had not taken notice of Mr. Bishop's evidence that on liners, as distinct from steam trawlers, the custom was for the crew to supply themselves.

    His Honour:  This is a steam trawler.

    Mr Gilbertson said it was not, and at the port of Milford the custom on liners was different from that on steam trawlers.

    His Honour replied that that did not affect his decision.

    Mr Gilbertson: I need not ask your Honour for a new trial today.

    His Honour:  If you did you would not get it it.




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