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Updated Wed, 19-Sep-2012

Conway moored in the Mersey

Conway at her moorings

Conway at Rock Ferry
Conway in the Mersey off Rock Ferry

Conway at Plas Newydd

HMS Conway training ship at her Plas Newydd anchorage off Anglesey in the Menai Strait. The Conway was laid down in October 1826 at HM Dockyard, Plymouth as HMS Nile, a two deck second rate sailing line-of-battle ship; 4,375 tons LOA 205 feet, depth 54 feet. A 92 gun vessel with ten 8 inch guns and eighty two 30 pounders. Built entirely of wood, her construction cost £86,197. Sister ships were the Rodney and London.
She became the training ship HMS Conway on the 24 July 1876, moored in the Mersey, off Rock Ferry, replacing the original Conway, which opened on 17 Aug 1859. The Conway was moved to Glyn Garth Mooring off Bangor in May 1941 due to German bombing, before finally moving to her last ancorage at Plas Newydd, off Lynas Point in the Menai Strait, on the 12 April 1949.

Tugs struggling to save the ship from going aground.
Britannia tubular railway bridge in the background

Conway aground - Menai Bridge behind
Firmly aground and her back broken - a total constructive loss

Conway Aground
Such a sad sight

Aerial view of the Conway Grounding

HMS Conway aground on 'The Platters' rocks in the Swellies in the Menai Strait. The Menai Suspension Bridge is in the background.

The ship went aground on 14th April 1953 whilst under tow to Birkenhead for refit. The unexpectedly fierce currents were too much for the tugs and she sheered to starboard with the falling tide and broke her back on the Platters rocks. She burned out in mysterious circumstances three years later. The Conway (Nile) was Britain's last floating commissioned, wooden walled Ship-of-the-Line. Victory is still in commission but not afloat.

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