Wreck Wreck

S.V. Sumatra

The Maidens

Average score: 0

Site name: S.V. Sumatra
Location: Descriptive location referring to nearest landfall i.e. town, village, harbour or island
The Maidens
Type: Describes whether this dive site can be dived from the shore, from a boat, or both
Wreck: Dive sites which include a shipwreck (or part of a shipwreck) are labelled with a ‘Yes’
Min. dive depth (m): The approximate minimum depth of the dive given in metres
Max. dive depth (m): The approximate maximum depth of the dive given in metres

Max. seabed depth (m): The maximum depth of the seabed at the site taken from the intersect between the dive site point and the depth contour on an Admiralty Standard Nautical Chart

Diving experience (min level): The recommended minimum level of diving experience for a specific site, described as Novice (<50 dives in temperate/cold waters and minimum certification of PADI Open/Advanced Open Water, BSAC Ocean Diver or CMAS 1 star), Intermediate (50-100 dives in temperate/cold waters and minimum certification of PADI Rescue Dive, BSAC Sports Dive or CMAS 2 star) or Advanced (>250 dives in temperate/cold waters and minimum certification of PADI Divemaster, BSAC Dive Leader or CMAS 3 star

Optimal wind direction: The general wind direction which causes minimal exposure at the site, corresponding to 8 points of the compass: North (N), North East (NE), East (E, South East (SE), South (S), South West (SW), West, North West (NW)

Exposure: The approximate level of exposure to wind and wave action at the site on any given day, described as Sheltered (inshore sites surrounded by a form of shelter on all sides), Moderate (sites which are partially sheltered) or Exposed (sites with little to no shelter)

Tidal strength: Anecdotal description of tidal strength at the site

Marine Protected Area: A Yes or No highlighting whether or not the site occurs within a Marine Protected Area

Visibility: Anecdotal description of the typical underwater visibility at the site
Visibility tends to be quite good, averaging close to 10 metres.
Best time to dive: Anecdotal recommendation for the best time to dive the site for optimal underwater conditions. This typically relates to the stage of the tide
30 minutes before HW or LW Belfast
Getting there: Directions for getting to the site

By boat launch from Portmuck or Ballylumford, the site is approx. 30km north-east of Larne Harbour, on the east side of Highlandman Rock to the North of the Maidens.

Facilities: Details of nearest facilities to dive site i.e. public car parking and toilets, slipways etc

Portmuck Harbour provides free car parking, a slipway and public toilets. The pier is 25 metres long, 6.5 metres wide and in good condition.

Free parking, a slipway, public toilets and outdoor changing facilities are available at Ballylumford Harbour as well (access to slipway restricted to Islandmagee Boat Club members; email: info@islandmageeboatclub.co.uk).

Nearest tank filling is DV Diving, Mount Stewart, Newtownards.

Hazards: Anecdotal information on possible hazards at the site for divers and snorkellers

  • Port of Larne can be busy, contact harbour master on VHF 11 to get permission to exit/enter port.
  • Be aware of ferry traffic (site is located very close to the Larne to Cairnryan ferry lane) and commercial fishing boats.
Description: A general description of the physical features of the dive site

The wreck is badly broken up but easy to spot and lying in 18 metres. The surrounding seabed is mostly bedrock (80%) and pebbles (20%).

History: The history of the wreck provided by the Senior Marine Archaeologist from the Department for Communities Historic Environment Division (only included for wreck sites)

Date of loss 17/11/1882. Full-rigged iron sailing ship built in 1882 in Glasgow. En route from Greenock to Rangoon with coal. Went ashore on Highlandman Rock, north of the Maidens. The 28 crew were all saved. The wind direction was SSW in a Force 5. At the Inquiry both the “master and first mate found guilty of careless navigation”. The former had his certificate suspended for 12 months and the latter for three months. This is the largest sailing ship lost on the East Antrim coast.

(Sources: Larn & Larn 2002; WA F119). WA (Wilson Archive)

Information drawn from Historic Environment Record of Northern Ireland (HERoNI), Department for Communities, Historic Environment Division.

Biodiversity: A description of the species composition at the site. Species of interest are highlighted. Follow the links for more information about the species on the NBN Atlas Northern Ireland website

Species recorded from the site include dead man’s fingers Alcyonium digitatum, the sandalled anemone Actinothoe sphyrodeta and several hydroid species. The Maidens are particularly rich in sponges, with over 11 species recorded from this site.

View all species records from this site

A link to the dive site location on the NBN Atlas Northern Ireland website, showing all species records from within a 1km boundary of the site centroid. Any new species records from the site submitted to Seasearch, iRecord, CEDaR Online Recording or iNaturalist will appear here
Local charters: A link to the website for the nearest Dive Centre to the site. A map of all dive centres is provided under ‘Go Diving’

DV Diving

North Irish Diver

Environmental and Historical Designations: A list of any environmental or historical designations attributed to the site, or overlapping it. Follow the link for more information

The Maidens SAC

More information: Links to additional information found online for the dive site

Irish Wrecks Online
Irish Underwater Council – Co. Antrim Wrecks
Northern Ireland Marine MapViewer

Safety: Safety tips

  • In an emergency call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.
  • Follow VHF radio Channel 16 (156.8 MHz), the international distress frequency. Send a distress alert followed by ‘MAYDAY, MAYDAY, MAYDAY’ and ‘This is [boat name]’.
  • Find nearest defibrillator (AED) here.
  • Portmuck/Ballylumford Harbour: 028 9336 6666
Latitude, Longitude: The approximate XY coordinates for the dive site in Decimel Degrees (DD). These can be converted to DMS or DDM by following the link below
54.952867, -5.73025

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