Plymouth Diving


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The Persier, formally known as the War Buffalo, was a 5000 ton merchantman built in Newcastle in 1919 and took part at Dunkirk in 1940. She nearly sank while doing convoy duty from America to Britain in 1941.

persier plymouthShe remainded stranded off Iceland for over a year until she was towed back to Britain to be repaired. In 1945 on convoy duty off Eddystone she was hit by a couple of torpedoes from UB-1017. Support vessels managed to rescue the crew and passengers and she was left to drift into the night. She sank but no one knew where.

In 1969, a fisherman found the wreck in Bigbury Bay. Divers from Plymouth Sound went down and brought up the ship's bell which now lives in Ray Ive’s Diving Museum in Plymouth. They bought the wreck for 300 pounds and still own her.



diving persierThe Persier is at position 50:17:06N; 03:58:07W at a maximum depth of around 30m. Diving can be done at much any time - there is little tidal flow around her. She lies on a sandy-rocky bottom with extensive and interesting reefs around her. Her bows and stern are fairly recognisable, but the midships is a mess of plates and wreckage.

The bow is quite upright and stands some 10m above the sea bed. Three large boilers can be seen. The remains of the engine with large pistons scattered over the wrecked plates are easily found. The Persier supports an amazing amount of fish life. Bib and pollack are especially common. The visibility and water quality is usually quite good.

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Venture Charters

Pete Fergus

The Coach House
Rockdale Road
Devon PL8 2DZ


Tel: 01752 396934

Mobile: 07948 525030

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To secure booking please make cheque payable to Peter Fergus at the above address

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