Curtain to fall on Solway Harvester after storm delays

Solway Harvester The scrap metal is being shipped to Morecambe in Lancashire

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The scrapping of the Solway Harvester should be completed by the end of the month, according to the company dismantling the ill-fated vessel.

The Scottish scallop dredger sank in heavy seas off the Isle of Man coast in January 2000 with the loss of all seven Galloway fishermen on board.

Stephen Carter, from the Laxey Towing Company, said the final sections will be removed from the water this week.

He said: "It's been 14 years and I hope it brings closure for all involved."

The dismantling of the vessel started in early November but Mr Carter's workforce has had to work through weeks of storms and gales.

Mr Carter added: "The weather has been appalling with all the storms but we have battled through and the final curtain is about to fall.

"The final section will be removed from Douglas harbour this week and dismantled before being shipped to Morecambe."

The wreck was found on 15 January 2000 lying on her starboard side in 35m (115ft) of water.

The Isle of Man government spent more than £1m to raise the vessel and retrieve the bodies.

On board were skipper Andrew Mills (known as Craig), 29, his brother Robin Mills, 33, their cousin David Mills, 17, Martin Milligan, 26, John Murphy, 22, David Lyons, 18, and Wesley Jolly, 17.

The men were all from the Isle of Whithorn area of Dumfries and Galloway.

The Laxey Towing Company was one of the firms to help recover the bodies.

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