ST Sea Alarm

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Sea Alarm, formerly Empire Ash.
Name: Empire Ash (1941-46)
Flying Fulmar (1946-56)
Sea Alarm (1956-98)
Owner: Ministry of War Transport (1941-46)
Clyde Shipping Co Ltd (1946-56)
C J King & Sons Ltd, Bristol (1956-73)
Welsh Industrial and Maritime Museum, Cardiff (1973-98)
Port of registry: United Kingdom Glasgow (1941-56)
United Kingdom Bristol (1956-98)
Builder: John Crown & Sons Ltd, Sunderland
Yard number: 201
Launched: 13 August 1941
Completed: 17 October 1941
Identification: Official Number 168694
Code Letters BCRK (1941-46)
Fate: Scrapped 1998
General characteristics
Tonnage: 263 GRT
Length: 107 feet 8 inches (32.82 m)
Beam: 26 feet 2 inches (7.98 m)
Draught: 12 feet 5 inches (3.78 m)
Propulsion: 1 x triple expansion steam engine (Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson Ltd, Newcastle upon Tyne) 102 horsepower (76 kW)

Sea Alarm was a 263 ton tug which was built as Empire Ash in 1941 for the Ministry of War Transport (MoWT). She was sold in 1947 and renamed Flying Fulmar. She was sold in 1956 and renamed Sea Alarm. On retirement in 1973 she became an exhibit at the Welsh Industrial and Maritime Museum, but was controversially scrapped in 1998 after the forced closure of the museum.


Empire Ash was built by John Crown & Sons Ltd, Sunderland as yard number 201. She was launched on 13 Auguast 1941[1] and completed on 17 October 1941. [2] She was built for the MoWT.[1] On 15 May 1946, Empire Ace was sold for £18,750 to Clyde Shipping Co Ltd, Glasgow and renamed Flying Fulmar. In May 1956[3] she was sold to C J King & Sons, Bristol[1] and renamed Sea Alarm. Operated under the management of the Alarm Steam Tug Co Ltd. In January 1973 she was sold to T W Ward Ltd, Briton Ferry for scrapping, but was resold the following month to the Welsh Industrial and Maritime Museum, Cardiff.[3] She was restored by 1978[1] and was dry-docked for many years at Roath Dock.[3] The museum closed on 1 June 1998 and Sea Alarm was scrapped apart from her engine.[4] Questions were asked by the Select Committee on Welsh Affairs about the scrapping of the tug as there was public outcry at the time.[5]

Official number and code letters

Official Numbers were a forerunner to IMO Numbers.

Empire Ash had the UK Official Number 168694 and used the Code Letters BCRK.[6]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Mitchell, W H, and Sawyer, L A (1995). The Empire Ships. London, New York, Hamburg, Hong Kong: Lloyd's of London Press Ltd. p. 316. ISBN 1-85044-275-4. 
  2. ""5315943"" (subscription required). Miramar Ship Index. R.B. Haworth. Retrieved 1 February 2009. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 "INDUSTRIAL SUNDERLAND - PAGE 15 / SHIPBUILDERS - PAGE 4". Thomas Hemy. Retrieved 1 February 2009. 
  4. "Shops replace ships as maritime history goes west". The Independent. Retrieved 1 February 2009. 
  5. "Publications and Records". UK Parliament Publications. Retrieved 1 February 2009. 
  6. "LLOYDS REGISTER, STEAMERS & MOTORSHIPS UNDER 300 TONS, TRAWLERS &c.". Plimsoll Ship Data. Retrieved 1 February 2008. 

External links