Hunstanton RNLI crew inspect wreck of Vena during exercise (Credit RNLI Hunstanton)
Author: Geoff Needham, Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer
At 11.52am on Wednesday 10 August, Yarmouth Coastguard requested the launch of Hunstanton lifeboat to a report of eight people out on the wreck sands at Brancaster and in danger of being cut off by the tide as it started to flow.
As the lifeboat, Spirit of West Norfolk, was about to enter the water, Yarmouth Coastguard reported that the people were now off the sands and safe on the beach. The crew were stood down to return to station.
The wreck of the Vena, a reminder of the second world war, was placed on the sands to be used as a target ship, having been towed from Yarmouth where it was to have been used as a block ship in the event of invasion. These days, it is like a magnet, drawing visitors out on to the sands to have a look.
Visitors must be aware of the tide times, as when the tide turns it comes in round the sands from both ways, and the channel that they paddled through becomes very deep very quickly, before completely covering the sands.