Do you remember when . . . Steamer came to the rescue of local men in overturned canoe

Two Larne men were rescued by a cross-channel steamer after getting into difficulties in a canoe a few miles from the shore.

The pair managed to cling on to the overturned canoe until they were rescued by the ship’s crew.

A report in the East Antrim Times in June 1965 stated that part of the canoe had broken as it had been battered by choppy seas and they had started to drift.

A coastguard at The Maidens spotted the stricken men a few hundred yards from the lighthouse.

They sent several distress rockets from the lighthouse and contacted their headquarters, where staff notified the new Bangor Inshore Rescue Unit.

However, at that moment, a steamer and the Islandmagee ferry boat were racing to the scene.

The men were hauled to safety by crew members of the steamer just a few minutes before the lifeboat arrived.

One of the men said: “We got into trouble when the sea became rough. I have no idea how long we were in the water.

“It seemed like ages, although it was probably only about an hour.”